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re veggie options

(76 Posts)
fairy1303 Mon 21-Oct-13 13:33:18

I'm a vegetarian. Went to m&s cafe. They had one veggie option, tomato soup. Nothing else. All sandwiches had meat in.

Ordered my drinks, ordered my soup. She started making our drinks, then tells me they have run out of soup.

So I said, oh, well do you have anything else vegetarian?

I was offered fruit.

Apologised, said I would have to go somewhere else.

Girl looked me up and down and said ' well, I've made your drinks now, you will have to pay for them!

AIBU? I think that is ridiculous given that they had run out of anything I could eat and she had started making the drinks before she told me??

Goldenhandshake Wed 30-Oct-13 11:32:59

Sorry yes I mean Mildred's blush you'd think I'd know the name by now but for some reason I always call it Martha's!!!

SuburbanRhonda Wed 30-Oct-13 10:57:46

golden, just googled it - do you mean Mildred's?

SuburbanRhonda Wed 30-Oct-13 10:56:47

Sounds worth a visit golden, though tbh I haven't seen nut roast on a restaurant menu since the 1980s!

Goldenhandshake Wed 30-Oct-13 10:28:20

There is an amazing veggie restaurant in Soho called Martha's, I am a regular there and am not vegetarian, it does a booming trade because the menu is inspired, it doesn't offer the bog standard veggie options like nut roast that most places seem to, they have a bit of imagination!

mistlethrush Wed 30-Oct-13 09:19:26

When I was growing up we didn't have very much money so we didn't go out for meals very often. However, that was probably a good thing as there was only one restaurant in the nearby (large) town that had anything on the menu that we could eat and that was a Pizzeria that did Margarita pizzas. We could probably have got a good vege curry but at that time I didn't like curry. And that was it. Nothing else. So, when I go into a restaurant and see that I have a choice of 3 or 4 things that seems pretty acceptable.

For 'organised' events I do hate being offered fish for the 'vegetarian' option. Which is why I object to people saying they are vegetarian when they are actually pescatarians. I don't mind them eating fish at all - but wish they wouldn't give hotels the idea that fish is suitable for vegetarians.

Mushroom risotto - the worst I had was in a restaurant chain that is a large, stripy wild cat repeated twice. It was a solid lump of rice with hardly any mushrooms and served on its own, not even with a salad garnish - it was pretty inedible (and this was a Christmas menu and the only option).

However, I think Mushroom stroganoff is my least favourite option, having attended an event 4 nights in a week where we sang for our supper, and got the same each night...

SuburbanRhonda Wed 30-Oct-13 08:56:07

Oh, and there are lots of vegetarian replacements for Parmesan out there, but admittedly, many are difficult to get hold of. Waitrose used to sell the Twineham Grange one, but have stopped doing it [sasd]

SuburbanRhonda Wed 30-Oct-13 08:52:15

RE: the 2% of the population being vegetarian.

Whenever we order in a buffet lunch at work, it's usually about one quarter vegetarian. Most people prefer the vegetarian food, so unless you're quick off the mark, as a vegetarian you're usually left with some cucumber sticks and a few crisps. I honestly think if we ordered 100% vegetarian we would get no complaints.

I wonder if the whole resurgence in meat-eating thing is because of all the new trendy recipes - beef carpaccio, pulled pork (always sounds rude to me!).

I never go on my work Christmas do. Colleagues say, oh, but it's not about the food, it's about having fun - which is all very well when you get half a farmyard for your meal and I get fecking goats cheese tart again!

And if anyone wants the most amazing mushroom risotto recipe in the world (oven-baked so no endless stiriring, contains Madeira!), look it up on Delia online smile

Shockedmum75 Wed 30-Oct-13 07:46:40

But what about when the mushroom risotto is the only option and it contains Parmesan! I hate that, why do chefs not know that Parmesan isn't vegetarian?

RegainingUnconsciousness Tue 29-Oct-13 23:02:28

Hello, just resurrecting this thread to report a couple of experiences:

Both in Bath today: Jamie's Italian had a whole heap of veggie options (Italians are often good, but not all, we looked at carluccios too, and they had sod all DH could eat). DH actually had a proper choice without even modifying some dishes (no cheese either). So brilliant! grin

The restaurant at the thermae spa: awful. They did let him have two starters together, but the provision was rubbish. There was one veggie option, but all with intrinsic cheese and a lot of nuts.

So: yay! Jamie Oliver, you have succeeded in pleasing the veggies!

Greydog Wed 23-Oct-13 23:02:51

Hello Frog only just caught up - the squash option was a starter - my fault for not splitting up the menu better!

raisah Tue 22-Oct-13 21:15:40

We complained at our local m&s about the pior veggie options and they did improve a bit but still have a long way to go. I asked about a veggie option after sifting through x amount of meat sandwiches only to be offered egg mayo! This was ok for me as I follow a halal diet but not ok if I was a full veggie!

dogindisguise Tue 22-Oct-13 20:28:24

Agree the veggie options in M&S are rubbish. I made the mistake of having lunch there once!

NoComet Tue 22-Oct-13 19:46:33

But are only 2% of the population veggies when eating some where like M&S

DSIS is a strict veggie always, DMIL was mostly a veggie after years of living with the above

My Muslim lab partner and my Jewish DF keep the food rules of their respective Faiths.

When eating out all these people generally and DSIL, her DH and DCs always choose the veggie option. (my Jewish DF will eat fish if they don't ruin it by adding prawns).

Having shared many a meal with this lot YANBU, vegetarian offerings' especially in cafes are hopeless.

fairy1303 Tue 22-Oct-13 19:15:00

I am SO glad the risotto issue has been raised. I bloody HATE risotto and it is everywhere! There is a restaurant my in laws like to go to and their veggie option is a cheese omelette. Vegans be gone!

What gets me is the ones that sneak meat into things that can easily be veggie - the M&S cafe had two soups that day - tomato (run out) and LENTIL... With bacon!

But don't fear... I forgot to tell you that I was offered a scone!

BrunelsBigHat Tue 22-Oct-13 18:40:05

I'm not veggie, but often can't be bothered with meat. So I like to see a variety of veggie meals on a menu.

I do judge places that have a poor choice of veggie meal

friday16 Tue 22-Oct-13 18:37:08

I can see the argument that only 2% of the population is veggie, but it doesn't mean there's a law against meat eaters (or pescaterians) eating veggie food.

No, but there's the problem that it's probably overpriced shit. I have experience: I was a vegetarian for some years, I cook meat or fish probably only about half the time and I regularly do order vegetarian good in curry houses especially the scruffier sort whose hygiene might be a bit iffy. I am a fan of veggie South Asian options on long-haul flights (especially on United flights out of Heathrow, because they get the food from a fantastic place in Southall).

But in general purpose restaurants (ie, not with a large vegetarian constituency because of the location or culture) the veggie option is likely to either be pre-made and reheated, or made from ingredients that have been hanging around, and will be palmed off on the junior staff to lash together. They just don't turn over enough of them to either keep the ingredients fresh, get good at making it or care overmuch: they assume (with some justification) that most veggies are more concerned with it being veggie than it being good, and therefore the kitchen produces quality they wouldn't dare send if it were a meat or fish dish.

I can see it from both sides. When I don't want to eat meat, I gravitate to balti houses simply because about half the menu is veggie and it's genuinely good. But what I don't do is order the veggie option in a random restaurant, because the chances are it's crap.

DrCoconut Tue 22-Oct-13 18:30:29

The thing I've noticed is that veggie options are always smaller than meat ones. As if no meat and doesn't eat are somehow the same, my 2 year old can eat some adult helpings I've had whole DH struggles to finish his! (He's not veggie).

RegainingUnconsciousness Tue 22-Oct-13 18:03:33

Umm, isn't recommending Harvester the same as offering a fruit shoot and pom bears? grin

But yes, curry is always a winner.

Not so helpful when looking for a cheap, quick lunch.

jellyboatsandpirates Tue 22-Oct-13 18:02:55

YANBU, that's crap! Just soup and then to be told "nope, soup's off?"
Hope you didn't pay up for the drinks,and said you didn't want them anymore as you'd come in for lunch (ie something to eat as well) and didn't want just a drink so you'd be off somewhere else!

fatlazymummy Tue 22-Oct-13 17:48:14

Try the Harvester. There's 3 or 4 vegetarian choices, and none of them are mushroom risotto (if I remember correctly).
Indian restaurants usually have a good selection of vegetarian dishes as well.

nicename Tue 22-Oct-13 17:38:22

Of course, I am a veteran vegetarian!

DontPanicMrMannering Tue 22-Oct-13 17:36:55

nicename have you checked your wine is vegetarian?

nicename Tue 22-Oct-13 17:31:23

I know lots of 'pretend' veggies (eat fish and/or chicken) and people who will go for the veggie option for religious reasons, plus some meat eaters who would pick a veggie option for health reasons (have you seen how much fat they can add to meat or fish on the cookery shows on telly??) or because they fancy an asparagus risotto for a change. So I think that its far more than 2% of people who would go veggie.

Vegans are another matter entirely.

And my mushroom risotto rocks! The secret is a helluva lot of wine and proper Italian mushrooms.

I wonder if you can make it with gin? I tried champagne once (nb it fizzes up like mad) when I was desperate and it wasn't commentable tbh.

Absy Tue 22-Oct-13 17:06:59

I can see the argument that only 2% of the population is veggie, but it doesn't mean there's a law against meat eaters (or pescaterians) eating veggie food. As mentioned upthread, Italian restaurants tend to be better at having "veggie" options, though they may not necessarily be on the menu to appease vegetarians, but because they're tasty.

RegainingUnconsciousness Tue 22-Oct-13 16:52:55

This thread has probably moved on but I want to jump on this bandwagon.

DH is veggie for medical reasons, he also can't eat cheese (or fish, or quorn), and eating out is a complete nightmare. Veggie options always contain cheese. Or too many beans.

Nowhere does a completely veggie no-cheese sandwich, or pot of pasta. He's often limited to asking for a selection of starters in restaurants (although the posh ones often send a chef out to have a chat with him and then make something unique, but we can't often afford that!).

Can we have a 'Feed the Veggies' MN campaign?!

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