Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Friendlier places for vegans to eat

Mike and I celebrated New Year's Eve last night at our favorite restaurant, Linger. The four course meal was one of the best I have ever had. Everything that we love about this restaurant was shining bright last night.

Linger is not a vegan restaurant. It's not a vegetarian restaurant. They happen to have the best (in our opinion) vegan food around, and they know how to treat customers. The service we get has always been extraordinary. Amazing vegan food and friendly, hospitable service. No wonder it's our favorite.

The owner, chefs and staff at Linger get it. They love food and know that they can be even more successful if they create delicious food that everyone wants to eat. Their menu is filled with items that are marked vegan, gluten free and nut free. Vegan without gluten and soy, no problem.

We are thrilled to have a restaurant like Linger where we live. There are more and more places to eat where good to great vegan food is found, and it's because of people who eat vegan going out in the world and asking for good vegan food (in some cases demanding it!). It's not difficult. And boy have times changed.

In the seventeen years that I have been vegan what I can choose from to order anywhere has completely changed.

Restaurant owners who hear from vegans about adding even one or two vegan items to their menu and listen to the request typically benefit from what they add to the menu. If they create delicious vegan dishes, word gets out. When one vegan wants to do a food gathering, such as a celebration, they can bring a bunch of people to a vegan-friendly restaurant that they love.

Just today we had lunch at a place we had stopped going to because of inconsistencies with vegan food. We had had very nice conversations with management and changes took place. The staff knows what is vegan and what is not vegan.

It starts with friendly conversation and a desire to be able to eat out and enjoy a nice vegan meal. It becomes big change, and at its' essence becomes a voice for the voiceless.

The first step is that restaurant owners need to know us. They need to know who we are and why we're vegan, and why we want their place of business to have more vegan items.

The restaurant business is not easy. Having friendly customers who want to make their business even better makes for a great day for the owner.

Try it. In the end you may just have more delish vegan choices the next time you go out to eat!

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