Downtown Spokane Eats: Mizuna

Hey, hey, hey, it’s that time again. Restaurant review, Foodbeat NW style. You may remember the review on The Flying Goat I did a few months back.  This review, again, is written by me and brought to you in conjunction with Foodbeat NW.

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Spokane is often scoffed at, considered the neglected redheaded, freckled, stepchild of Seattle. While chain restaurants still cloud the northern, southern and eastern corners of our city, the downtown scene has picked itself up, cleaned itself off, and is here to offer residents and travelers quite a few dining options.


One restaurant that has called downtown Spokane home for many years is Mizuna. Mizuna touts itself as Spokane’s leading vegetarian restaurant, and for good reason. While many restaurants offer one or two vegetarian options, Mizuna has an entire menu dedicated to the herbivore crowd. Carnivores have no fear; many local meat options are available as well.

All entrée options sound interesting at first glance, and I am pleased to report that the menu rotates seasonally and features local northwest organic ingredients, earning it a Foodbeat Northwest stamp of approval. Also full of local favorites is the rather extensive Northwest wine list, featuring many of my favorite Washington wineries.

While considering the menu options, including the Pan Seared Halibut, Sweet Chili Marinated Tempe and House-Made Seitan, we nibbled on bread dipped in house-infused garlic rosemary olive oil. They chose the Pappardelle Pasta with Eggplant Meatballs and Vegetarian Carbonara with Vegan Bacon, peas, shallots, herbs, cherry tomatoes and shaved parmesan, (options I was salivating over). I selected the meat special of the evening: Lamb Shank Osso Buco with goat cheese polenta and gremolata braised carrots.


As a woman married to a bacon aficionado, (aren’t all men?), I enjoy a crispy slice every so often. I did not have high hopes for the vegan bacon in the Vegetarian Carbonara dish, but I was blown away! I couldn’t believe I was eating a vegan version of my beloved breakfast protein source. Equally enjoyable were the eggplant meatballs. These orbs were perfectly seasoned, smooth and moist in the center and crisp on the outside. I opted against stealing the entire plate and focused instead on my mouth watering, fall off the bone lamb osso buco. Although we were all rather full, we decided to split the famous vegan carrot cake. This vegan delight is hearty and chunky, and easily beats out any carrot cake I’ve ever eaten. I’m still slightly sad I did not order a second piece to take home.


All in all I was, and always am, very pleased with my Mizuna dining experience. The staff is knowledgeable, friendly and accommodating and you will be welcomed as though you were an old friend.