Brown Grain Thai Restaurant

Brown Grain 1
Brown Grain
190 Timor St
VIC 3280
P: 03 5562 2576

We walked past Brown Grain on a hot day and swiped a take away menu from out front, later deciding it would be a good place to visit. Whilst Brown Grain are very willing to meet your dietary requirements as a vegan, there was a bit of a language barrier between me and the staff so I later submitted additional menu questions in writing to get confirmation of all the info I was seeking for my readers. Definitely visit this restaurant – but not without being armed with the info in this post!

Edit: I have been informed that Brown Grain have a separate gluten free menu. Sadly I didn’t get the opportunity to view it, so I can’t speak for what may or may not be suitable for vegans on it.

The restaurant was buzzing and is obviously popular with the locals. The decor was warm and inviting, though the chairs were hard and uncomfortable. We found the service to be absolutely stellar during the rush, but when it died down, I struggled to make eye contact with any of the wait staff and felt a little disgruntled by having to walk up to the counter twice only to be greeted by staff chatting amongst each other with their backs to me both times.

Brown Grain 2
#21, Larb Tofu

If you go for anything on the menu that’s a salad, request “no fish sauce” because all the dressings contain fish sauce; Brown Grain will be happy to subsitute soy sauce for you. I’ll be honest – I wasn’t a huge fan of this dish. I think it might have been the pounded rice that was stuck to the tofu; it was gritty and horrible, like when you haven’t washed your salad greens properly. I also found the tofu to be a little too soft/silken and “eggy”, and I’m quite sure that the dressing was tossed with lemon juice, not lime, which is what the menu specified.

Brown Grain 3
Satay Tofu with Salad (on request – this was basically a “special meal” I made up from what I could see on the menu)

THIS. WAS. BRILLIANT. I loved it! I was a bit tofu-ed out by the end of it, but it was soooo good. The satay was thick and dreamy, and not too sweet.

We really wanted to sample some dessert from the menu, but both vegan options had sold out for the night. SADFACE. Even Mr. AA was disappointed – and he’s not big on desserts. The vegan options were: sweet pumpkin in coconut milk or banana in coconut milk. We weren’t willing to be defeated though, so we ordered this:

Brown Grain 4
Black Sticky Rice

FYI, the item on top is a coconut custard and it is NOT VEGAN. So if you order this, ask for no custard. I do recommend ordering it – I sampled spoonfuls of black sticky rice and syrup (that weren’t touching the custard, of course!) and it was divine.

Below are some menu photos and tips for ordering that I wish I’d known before visiting. If you can, give Brown Grain a heads up about your visit – they have now had to deal with me, so they’re prepared for anything! (Ha.)

Brown Grain 6

  • #6 Golden Tofu: Vegan.
  • Soups: can be made vegan on request, ask for no fish sauce (they will use soy sauce instead). The soups do not contain any shrimp paste.
  • #21 Larb Tofu: can be made vegan on request, ask for no fish sauce (dressing will be made with soy sauce instead).

Brown Grain 7

  • #26 Green Salad: can be made vegan on request, ask for no fish sauce (dressing will be made with soy sauce instead).
  • Curries: all pastes are vegan (do not contain shrimp paste). Simply order the “vegetables and tofu” option.
  • Stir Fries: most are made with an oyster sauce base, but can be made vegan on request. Ask for no oyster sauce (stir fry will be made with soy sauce instead).

Brown Grain 5

  • The noodle section is a little harder to navigate. To be sure, specify no oyster sauce, fish sauce, eggs or egg noodles.

Brown Grain on Urbanspoon

3 thoughts on “Brown Grain Thai Restaurant

  1. I’m a coeliac foodie and Warrnambool local, and although I love your blogs just have to correct this one in regard to BrownGrains gluten free friendly status. This restaurant actually has Warrnambool’s most extensive gluten free menu, and actually have a dedicate gluten free menu to provide diners on request. And best of all, the staff are only too happy to cater to Coeliacs needs and wait patiently while I um and uh over the many options available. It’s hard to choose when you’re so used to being offered salad or salad as is the case at so many other local establishments. I love Brown Grain! And they now have a restaurant in Ballarat!

    • Thanks Michelle, I will update this post to include that information! Unfortunately I had some problems with ordering anything suitable here – perhaps the gluten free menu would have had better choices for me! It’s a shame it wasn’t offered to me – I saw no sign of gluten free options and didn’t think to ask.

      • Dear All,

        We are more than happy to improve our quality of food and services that delivered to our guests.

        However, for people who have a special dietary requirement please let our staff know before hand, then we can organise the proper food for you.

        Thank you so much Michelle for all your supporting.

        We will do our best serving good food and services to our local family, friends, and guests for both Ballarat and Warrnambool branches.


Chow down on this!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s