Chef Marc Marrone is no stranger to Asian dining; he was the West Coast Corporate Executive chef of TAO Group until February 2019 when he opened Graffiti Bao at T-Mobile Arena. A huge success (please, get the vegan nachos if you’re at the arena), in September 2019 he opened another Graffiti Bao, and unlike the location at T-Mobile, it’s open every day. Needless to say, this talented chef hasn’t only impressed omnis, but the vegan options at Graffiit Bao impressed us, too.
Serving Chinese eats in a fast-casual setting, Marrone’s vegan dishes are some of the best in town if you’re looking for Asian cuisine (it’s also one of the reasons his restaurant nabbed top honors in the Las Vegas Vegan Food Guide 2020). His vegan options stick with seasonal produce and ingredients you can see, which we adore. Think the caliber of high-end restaurant dishes in a chilled out setting with price tags to match.
Of course, the first thing you have to order are the vegan bao buns, a soft sweet potato bun stuffed with seasonal veggies and served with dipping sauce.
If you love cauliflower, try the nuoc cham cauliflower made with fresh herbs, chilis and season citrus (like pomello, swoon). It’s slightly charred and the herbs and chilis with the citrus are incredible.
Another vegan option at Graffiti Bao is the roasted chili tofu, pillowy crispy tofu served with bamboo shoots, broccoli and black pepper. They’ve also got a vegan fried rice that has a little kick.
But, our favorite dish is the green chili garlic noodles, a heaping plate of noodles with kale and crispy garlic that is absolute perfection.
The vegan options at Graffiti Bao don’t end there. You can also customize the entree with crispy tofu and kung pao sauce.There’s even a small veggie section on the menu with two vegan options — Chinese broccoli made with apple hoisin and sesame seeds, and the bok choy with Shaoxing (fermented rice wine), soy and crispy garlic.
Marrone is just scratching the surface in Las Vegas. He’s slated to open two more restaurants in 2020 at The Bend — Italian Graffiti and Graffiti Pizza, and is also planning a rooftop concept Downtown. Obviously, we can’t wait to see what vegan eats he creates.
7355 S. Buffalo Dr., 89113, 702-323-6033, Monday – Saturday: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m., Sunday: 11 a.m – 9 p.m.
Diana Edelman is the founder of Vegans, Baby. A Las Vegas resident, she spent a decade in the travel blogging world before switching gears to work in elephant rescue in Thailand. Diana travels the world to meet chefs and try vegan food, as well as speak at events focusing on travel, tourism, veganism and entrepreneurship. She’s a partner with the prestigious James Beard Foundation and curates their Vegas Vegan Dinners at the James Beard House. Diana is alsoa partner with Life is Beautiful, curating the all-vegan Farm Stand.