Mugi is a low-key takeout spot specializing in vegan Thai.
Located just steps from Bathurst station, this little boite serves up hearty bowls of curries, noodles, and rice, with nearly everything made from scratch.
There's not much in terms of seating here—it's mostly takeout—though there is a handful of bar stools along the wall, if you want to dine in.
It's hard to imagine Thai food without the flavourful trifecta that is fish sauce, oyster sauce, and shrimp paste. But wife-husband duo Anshan Chaiyakul and Asa Copithorne have managed to create healthy, meat-free dishes without skimping on the flavour.
The key is a housemade mixture made from dehydrated shiitake mushrooms, onions, nutritional yeast, and dulse, a type of red seaweed from the east coast.
Instead of meats, they use a lot of jackfruit, both young and ripe.
A favourite fruit in vegan cooking, you'll find this versatile ingredient in dishes like the Jackfruit Larb salad ($11.99), using a recipe from Anshan's hometown of Phrae.
Larb—which basically just means 'chopped' in Thai—is typically served with raw meats, but Mugi's version is a surprisingly spicy serving of unsweet young jackfruit, wood-ear mushrooms and zucchini.
For the Hang Leh jackfruit curry ($14.95), they use a non-viscous curry which utilizes the jackfruit with cauliflower, tempeh, ginger, and curry leaf.
All curry here uses a paste with up to 20 spices, all of which are roasted and ground in-house, and come with a portion of rice.
The Khao Soy ($13.95) is a non-fried version of the crispy favourite.
Rather than using crunchy egg noodles (which eventually soften down into the coconut milk sauce), these sweet potato noodles are served soft, opting out of its unhealthy deep-fried form.
'Mugi' actually translates to 'barley' in Japanese (Asa is half Japanese), so there's complimentary barley tea available for guests.
You also might get a little serving of delicious, sweet ripened jackfruit on a little side plate, on the house.