Most vegans in Chicago now know about Sue’s Thursday night vegan buffets at her Dragonlady Lounge, or at least they’ve heard of them. Having been to the buffet twice on Thursday and once this weekend for the Vegan Chicago Meetup, I am long overdue in posting a review of the spicy vittles Sue serves.

Normally, any Thursday after 6:30 pm, Dragonlady Lounge fills up with a gaggle of treehugging, animal loving, bicycle riding vegans who’ve been planning this outing all week. Which of course seems a little strange because it is more like a dive bar than an eco-center. And true to dive bar fashion, the lighting is dim, the tables few and the beer selection is swell. Because this is a Korean bar, they also have sake.

I forgot to take my regular camera but I don’t think it would have done much better than the iPhone unless I used a flash. So please excuse the photos, they are dim but the food was definitely not.

Everything in the buffet is amazing. There are only a few items I personally don’t care for but that’s not Sue’s fault. It’s usually something to do with me preferring broccoli over snow pea pods or something like that.

Just look at this spread:

There were 14 trays of Korean foods to try, not including the miso soup being served up from the kitchen window. This seemed to be a few more trays than she usually serves on a Thursday night but I’m sure that was because Vegan Chicago was managing the event and we had 46 prepaid attendees.

There was absolutely no way to try everything. Even though I went back for a second round, I ended up serving up my faves rather than trying something new. Here’s my plate and while I don’t know what everything was named, I’ll attempt to describe so if you go, you can look for these goodies.

Let’s start upper middle at 12:00. That’s the broccoli peaking out from behind the tofu. If you ever see broccoli on the buffet, you have to try it—awesome!

1:00 is a couple veggie sushi pieces. Not terribly Korean but still good. Go for the spicier fair since you can get veggie sushi just about anywhere.

2:00 Oh I forget what these little pockets are called but you see them at Asian markets and they’re like tiny wet pita pockets filled with rice. Tasty.

3:00 A very dark mahogany colored mushroom dish. The shrooms are cut into long slivers like noodles and spiced really well, not overpowering and the mushroom flavor comes through. This was one of my top choices for second helpings.

5:00 Brussels sprouts with sesame seeds. I love Brussels sprouts!

6:00 A spinach dish with slices of carrots and cucumbers. Really tasty, not a hot dish but more like a cold cooked salad.

8:00 Kimchee, very spicy, a little went a long way for me but I’m a woose.

9:00 There are two things in the 9:00 position because I ran out of room on the plate. On top are these tiny dumplings which were very yummy and underneath is a folded pancake with veggies in it. That pancake was also on my second helping plate. YUM!

In the middle is a fabulously marinated and spicy tofu cutlet. I grabbed two more of these they were that good. AND DH declared these to be his favorite item in the buffet.

And underneath it all is a great rice dish with beans.

If you should find yourself in Chicago on a Thursday night, this is the place to be. Sue never disappoints—except for the time she went on vacation and we didn’t know. But that’s Sue, she’s a spicy character just like her amazing food. So call ahead to be sure the buffet is still on and get there by 7:00 pm so you’re more likely to get a table or seat at the bar.

NOTE: Because this was a Vegan Chicago event, second rounds were allowed but I’ve been to the Thursday night buffet where they weren’t. Sue used to have a sign posted that asked us not to waste food by taking more than we can eat. Evidently that was a problem such that not everyone got served fairly. So be sure to clean your plate.