I almost forgot to mention the yummy meals I had in New Jersey! I think this oversight was due mainly to the fact that I ate so much home-made food at my parents' house. In fact, it was all so good, and there was such large quantities of it, that the restaurant experiences paled in comparison. That being said, there were three big winners as far as my NJ meals went.
For vegans and others dining together, Caffe Galleria in Lambertville takes the vegan cake. The menu actually declares CG to be "the place where the unapologetic carnivore and the dedicated vegan dine together happily." Now, that's my kind of place! With a plethora of dishes for everyone to choose from, our entire party left happy. I ordered from the brick-oven menu and got a vegan pizza loaded with veggies and garlic, while my uncle went for the cornmeal-crusted tofu special. My husband and aunt got regular cheese pizzas, while my parents enjoyed some vegan pasta dishes I can't really remember. Vegan chocolate silk pie was ordered for dessert. I was too full, but my family all insisted upon the yummy-ness of everything we ate. Below, you can see us outside after our meal. Notice how content we look. :) Two tips: 1. It's Bring Your Own as far as alcohol goes, and 2. I highly recommend a walk across the bridge to New Hope afterwards. It's just a nice thing to do. I will definitely be back next time I'm in NJ.
In a close second place, I gotta give props to Pad Thai in Highland Park. I've been coming here for years and it's always amazing. Such bold flavors and beautiful dishes. Plus, everything is the vegetarian section of the (HUGE!) menu is sans fish sauce, egg, and all the other things you need to worry about with Thai food. Should you find yourself in central Jersey, PLEASE go. It's awesome.
Lastly, I enjoyed a really good Mediterranean meal at Sahara in New Brunswick. It wasn't the best I've had, but some of the dishes - especially the slightly sweet dolmas and the hummus with ezme (spiced veggie tapenade)- were outstanding. It's a great place for vegans in the area, as it's reasonably priced and you can bring "others" with no problem. Luckily, I went with Joselle (below) and we just ordered gobs of food and shared.
I hope your holidays were as filled with great food, family, friends, and fun as mine were. Here's to more good eating together in 2009!