Handbookers! I have a very special post today and it is dedicated to food! This is the first post of its kind on HNLH but it won’t be the last. That’s because I love to travel and I love to eat food. Only problem with that is I’m vegetarian. But wait there’s more. I am vegetarian and I do not eat cheese, eggs, or drink milk. I do eat chocolate and will sometimes partake in a pasta that has egg noodle so I am not a vegan BUT as you can imagine life is rough for a tasty food lover who has these dietary standards but also likes to go out to superb restaurants from time to time.
Me: excuse me do you have any vegetarian options?
Waiter: points to a standard aka boring salad or else something that is immersed in cheese
A version of this scenario has happened too many times for me to count or worse, when I am given something that is specifically catered to my needs, no love goes into it. Its like the chefs are like hmmm no meat, no cheese, no care. And it is very frustrating! It ruins my day/night and certainly that of my loving partner who heartily enjoys his meal but is silently praying that I don’t say anything hostile or storm into the kitchen to give the cooks a good fist shake and piece of my mind.
While trying bad, unconcerned restaurants is something that I will not likely escape from, what has been incredible on my tasty, veggie food journey is helpful reviews from others and even just luck of the draw. Today I want to share my most treasured places with you and the best part is, if you have loved ones who are meat- eaters then these places can fit their needs as well. All have options for carnivores and plant- eaters alike and the care and expertise that goes into their meals is nothing short of stunning. You’ll have to put your travel pants on for this one and if ever you are in any of these locations you absolutely must grab a chair, sit at the table, and munch munch munch.
San Antonio, Ibiza (Spain)
Don’t make me cry right now! Because that place right there is something to cry over… only when you are far away from it that is. Veterans know the place as Ravin Ruby and my goodness is it pound for pound delicious. The owner, Scott, is lovely and always there to look after the customers.
He makes sure that you are happy when you are eating. Don’t you love those kind of restauranteurs? Not all in your face but literally aware of their customers enjoyment or lack thereof. It’s got a 4.5 out of 5 on Trip Advisor which is pretty spanking high, and 87% of the reviewers rate it as excellent– the highest rating.
It’s and Indian and Balti Restaurant located very close to the West End in San Antonio, Ibiza. By the way, if you have not been to Ibiza yet, do yourself a favor and get there. You will probably have one of the best experiences of your life whether you are young or old. And stop at Rubys while your there and a huge smile will be plastered on your face all day and all night.
You can get various kinds of meat in your dish and anything they make with meat they can easily make without. Veggie options aplenty! My absolute fav is the Persian Karahi (vegetarian) with pilal rice, onion bhaji as a starter and peshwari naan (bread with coconut and raisin) to accompany it. The prices are so cheap and I believe my favorite meal ⇑ is about €14 :0 I know right! Everything is fresh, the vibe is chilled and relaxed, and the owner and the chef are just awesome.
The Brunch Club
You like English breakfast? I mean how could you not?! A traditional one has hash browns, toast, eggs, bacon or sausage (or both), fried tomatoes, mushrooms, and baked beans. At this point, if you are looking at it like its weird that must mean that you need to take yourself on a trip to England and try it for yourself.
I’m American and thought the idea of beans for breakfast was bonkrs. Um hello we eat syrup and pancakes for breakfast and I am not trying that! But after I did, I was sold… forever. It is a hearty way to have breakfast and oh is it so satisfying.
That being said, I don’t really eat anything on that list save for tomatoes, hash browns, toast, and baked beans. While that is more than enough for me to enjoy the breakfast, the Brunch Club takes it a step further with their vegan breakfast options. Cue the Cheshire cat smile!
Baked beans, sauteed spinach, hummus, whole wheat granary toast, avocado, fried tomato, tenderstem broccoli, and falafel patty (I add a hashbrown when I order). If you could see me now you’d pass me a towel to wipe the drool (not really) because woman is this breakfast amazing!
Most places where I go to eat an English breakfast just eliminate the meat and egg options (and some even charge me the same price) but this one makes something special and I tell you it tastes amazing. The place is set up as you would expect. There are cozy chairs to choose from and various seating arrangements to eat your breakfast.
It is very close to John Lewis in Liverpool City Centre and you can pretty much see into the kitchen which is always a good sign. They don’t have anything to hide! They close at 5pm daily. They’ve got cocktails and different breakfast items and though it has eggs in it I have tried their pancakes before and they are some of the best that I have ever had in my entire life. Here is their menu and website.
Anyone who knows me knows that Berkeley is my heart. Yep I will retire there one day and live my days in constant thanks for the wonderful place surrounding me. Berkeley will spoil you with vegetarian and vegan options and I must admit since I have been away I have dearly missed being spoiled in such a way.
Saturn Cafe is an all vegetarian restaurant and its pretty remarkable. The first time that I ever went I was unaware of what I stepped into. After work it was established that the entire team would be going to this diner to have some food before going to collapse in our respective beds before work early the next morning.
I wasn’t really hungry so decided not to go but after a bit of convincing from my teamies, said I’d pop in for a little bit. Everyone ordered and I just got a water for myself knowing I wouldn’t be staying long. Their food came and my friend offered me a chicken tender. “Oh no,” I said, “I don’t eat meat, remember?” She laughed and said “this is a veggie restaurant!” And my jaw dropped to the floor.
I grabbed a menu and was like, “what you mean that right there that blatantly says chicken is not so?” And everyone at the table were all like, “yeah Manika no meat.” Mind blown. Of course I ordered straight away then returned the next day and the next and yeah ok I went a lot.
The company began in Santa Cruz and are really committed to making the world a happier healthier place through an innovative menu such as theirs. The website says that they “offer traditional American diner fare with a vegetarian twist” and that twist tastes good! The burgers are banging the burrito and fajita… forget about it (meaning is amazing), and everything is vegan upon request (vegetarian otherwise). You can hit up Saturn cafe in Berkeley or Santa Cruz but the only place I have ever been/tried is in Berkeley. Ask anyone and they will point you right to it!
Mama Thai Food
Koh Phangan, Thailand
Planning a trip to Thailand? Is Koh Phangan on your list of islands to visit? Do not leave without giving Mama’s a whirl. On the outside you will look at it and think hmmm doesn’t look like much. Try some of their food and you will think yeah I’ll be back here tomorrow. It is owned by a lovely Thai couple who are also new parents (as of 2017). Their baby is so cute and always at work with them!
Both the owners cook and both get down in the kitchen as much as the other; meaning both cook equally well. It is very small and so if you go in a big group and all order different things it can take a while to get to you, but it is also so very worth it.
Options for omnivores and for vegetarians. I personally love the massaman curry which has sweet potato, potato, veg like broccoli, tomato and the most savory taste. It comes over rice and omg its stunning. I also like the panang curry which is filled with veg and lovely flavored sauce over rice. One thing you mustn’t leave without trying is their spring rolls. Hand rolled and cooked to perfection with a sweet chilli sauce to dip it in. Never had better spring rolls in the whole of my life and certainly not on the island. They make fruit smoothies as well which again are the best that I ever tried during my entire 4 months in Koh Phangnan.
A Final Little Taste
The restaurants above never failed to put a smile on my face and the care that goes into the food feels like a blessing every time. All these restaurants use fresh ingredients and take care of you whether you are an omnivore or vegetarian. Whenever I find myself in these areas and hungry for some comida (food) they are at the top of the list. It is a beautiful thing when the health and care of people are at the forefront of a business and that’s what make these 4 the best. So you got your travel pants on right? Go forth and enjoy some of the best food in these locations! I’ll be back next week with 4 more restaurants from around the globe that have yummy veggie options, so subscribe to ensure you don’t miss it! Happy travels 🙂
- Have you eaten in any of these places before? What did you think of them? Have any suggestions on other places I should try with veggie options? Let me know that and any other thoughts you have by commenting below ⇓
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- Live long and eat good 🙂