Finding truly vegetarian Thai food is something of an art due to their beloved and ubiquitous nam pla fish sauce: I had never eaten Thai in Paris until a couple of nights ago when a tip-off led me to Blue Elephant down by Bastille. It didn’t work out…

You certainly can’t accuse them of underdoing the décor. Even if they just had the indoor rain forest and hadn’t gone for the waterfall, that would have been quite striking, but they had both.

I had heard that they had a dedicated vegetarian menu, and indeed they had a page in their menu that really talked up their commitment to their vegetarian customers. But, you know me, I had to ask… how could they have Thai green curry when it is always made with that pre-made paste that almost always has shrimp paste and nam pla in it? Turns out that it was too good to be true: if the wait staff are to be believed, that item is indeed non-vegetarian.

Of the vegetarian items that we did order, it was a mixed bag. The rolls were good, and the cashew dish was tasty too. Unfortunately it was served inside a pineapple. OK we get it… we’re in a tropical wonderland!!!!!

Rolls

But the other vegetarian plat was unpleasant and the pad thai was sloppy and may also have been tainted with nam pla. Also, everything is rather pricy here – I suppose someone has to pay for the waterfall – such as the 9€50 coconut drink. By chance, I had just bought some coconuts in Chinatown for a Euro a pop so I really couldn’t justify that luxury.

Oh well, you can’t win them all.

Cons: The food and the prices
Pros: Complementary orchid for ladies on the way out

Blue Elephant

43-45 rue de la Roquette, 75011

Métro: Bastille

01 47 00 42 00

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