Observe the contortions of your favorite vegan's face next time they're enthusing over a new animal-friendly restaurant. You will witness a glorious emotional duel between heartbreak—"why can't all restaurants be like that!?"—and desire—"I want to be there right now, dammit." Vegans have had a historically rough go of it restaurant-wise, so this electric thrill of discovery is justified, never more so than when the ethical eater in question is raving about Portobello, which might just be making the finest vegan victuals in town. It is imperative that you order and devour the fig-and-rosemary crostata, a perfect sweet vs. savory showdown staged on an impossibly buttery crust. The melon with olive oil and basil is a simple delight that allows the constituent flavors to come to full, fuss-free life. It matches nicely with one of the fruity wines from Hip Chicks Do Wine, who produce their juice just short of three miles from your table. For dessert, try the tiramisu. It's not the traditional airy confection, but the dense, cookielike cake is a wonder all its own.
Order this: Fig-and-rosemary crostata. Is it an appetizer, a dessert, or something in between? Does it matter? It's amazing.
Best deal: Half-servings of the entrees are six or so bucks. Order two!
I'll pass: Heirloom tomato and watermelon salad. These two great tastes don't go great together.