Mon-Sat, 11:30am-10pm; Sun, 11:30am-9:30pm
A, B, C, D, E, F, M at W. 4th St.-Washington Sq.
American Express, Diners Club, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
14th St. to Watts St., Hudson St. to Broadway
Unlike new-wave herbivore hangouts, this mature West Village spot makes no attempt to cloak meat substitutes in elaborate disguises. Instead, Quantum Leap makes a virtue of modest ambitions with old-school veggie comfort food. The comfy brick-walled room and worn wood furnishings attract a mellow mix of grizzled regulars, guidebook-toting Europeans, and sweatshirted NYU students. To a sax-heavy smooth-jazz soundtrack, they savor veggie burgers, Asian-accented tofu concoctions, and fish that—free of MSG or additives and assertively seasoned—taste as righteous as they sound. Large portions are augmented with brown rice or steamed vegetables, neither of which rises above steam-table level. Leave room for homemade desserts, though. Curvilinear lumps of banana or coconut “cream” pie are guilt-free pleasures sweetened by honey and dehydrated cane juice. After 30 years around the corner on West 3rd Street, Quantum Leap relocated to this non-chic strip of Thompson Street in 2004.Recommended Dishes
Fire rock burger, $11.95; broiled salmon filet, $13.50