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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If going to brunch at a place that only has non vegan items on the menu such as pancakes, french toast, meat, egg stuff - have any of you had any luck asking the cook to make something for you?
Would it be bold of me to ask them to make something off their menu for me?
I plan on packing something in my purse and eating ahead of time, because of the limiting menu- but I kind of want to impress my friend I am meeting for brunch at a place she chose. She is on the fence about vegetarianism.

Have any of you ordered off the menu and gotten good results? Would there be something that the chef might be inclined to make me that is vegan - any suggestions of things I might suggest to the waitress? Its not a big deal- I'm just curious. (and wish we were eating at a vegan friendly place!
)

I was thinking something like using the spinach and tomatoes that they might use in an omelette and something with potatoes- maybe too far fetched?
 

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I have done the following to adapt:

Called ahead and asked to speak with the chef.

Looked at the menu online.

If you give a link to the place, I can make specific suggestions for you to make for the chef. That said, most places that serve brunch will have fruit, oatmeal, potatoes, vegetables and toast that can be assembled in a number of ways for a vegan.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
http://www.altonsrestaurant.com/menu...html#breakfast

I see oatmeal in small print


brunch seems to be more challenging than the rest of the meals. But I bet its doable. I appreciate the creative help to get me a yummy breakfast!

edit: reading the menu more carefully- I am totally amazed at how unhealthy this menu is altogether! Its like 99% animal products. Wow. My eyes are so much more open now its amazing. I am so glad I don't eat this garbage anymore
 

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So, it looks like they have fruit salad, toast, English muffin, hard roll, bagel, toast, cereal, oatmeal, blueberries (or topping), strawberries (or topping), walnuts, broccoli, mushrooms, spinach, onions, peppers and possibly more (ask what's in the vegetarian omelette). You can call ahead or email them if you're going in a few days and not this morning and ask about specific foods listed above to ensure they are vegan.

Once you know which of these things are vegan, you can assemble a meal!

I'd ask for all the veggies cooked and then top the home fries with them. I'd ask for fruit salad and see if they'll put some walnuts in it and/or also fruit topping and I would put this on toast or an English muffin. It will be bright, colorful, tasty and not look like you're being "deprived" at all!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
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Originally Posted by *AHIMSA* View Post

It will be bright, colorful, tasty and not look like you're being "deprived" at all!
Yes!!
This is the goal- I wouldn't care if it were just me eating, but I am looking to impress the girl- I think I will give a call before I jump in the shower. I appreciate the help! Being new at this I know it sounds silly, but I am not sure if it is a normal thing to do- to have them make something out of other things -I am new to these situations and know everyone has been through them before - really appreciate the advice. And I'm totally neurotic
 

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It's fine to ask for things - I've noticed a lot of vegans on here are shy to do so and it's a shame - in my experience chefs are always really helpful and some of the tastiest meals out I've had have been when I've had things arranged specially as there was nothing vegan on the menu. If I can't phone ahead, usually I just make the effort to be really polite and friendly, and people respond well to that. Think about it - what's the worst that can happen? They can say, no we wont do that - that's it (and that's never happened to me). Usuually if you phone ahead, they even say, "oh well I could make X or get Y in" which is beyond what I expect


In hotels, or when I'm eating breakfast out, I always ask for bits of the breakfasts together - usually some combination of: dry toast, beans, mushrooms, hash browns and tomatos. I had a look at the menu though, and realised a full english probally isn't what they do in the US!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, that didn't go as planned


The wait was an hour so she wanted to go to the place down the street. The menu was similar- but no oatmeal. I asked for potatoes and to take the spinach, tomatoes and mushrooms from the omlette and mix them with the potatoes instead. She said it was policy that they only go with menu items- no substitutions. I was like, "really? you can't take the spinach from over here and put them with the potatoes over there?"
She said no. Instead of making a big deal I just said okay, I'm fine with water. She said, "you don't want a pancake or anything?" I said "no thanks"
I sat and watched my friend eat gross bacon and crepes with butter and whipped cream all over them. It was kind of nauseating. I'm glad I already ate a terrific breakfast at home!

I don't think I want to patronize a place that won't accommodate vegans. I feel bad for people that have allergies- but I guess in their eyes its their business they can run it how they want. I'm just not going to give them any of my money. I was thinking of going on line and writing a review to let people know they won't reasonably accommodate vegans or dairy allergies.

And in my 2 whole months as a vegan, this is the first time I have run into an issue where a place wouldn't be flexible to accommodate me (except for my SIL's wedding). I think considering, thats pretty good. I think this place is just in poor customer service.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mollycakes View Post

Well, that didn't go as planned


The wait was an hour so she wanted to go to the place down the street. The menu was similar- but no oatmeal. I asked for potatoes and to take the spinach, tomatoes and mushrooms from the omlette and mix them with the potatoes instead. She said it was policy that they only go with menu items- no substitutions. I was like, "really? you can't take the spinach from over here and put them with the potatoes over there?"
She said no. Instead of making a big deal I just said okay, I'm fine with water. She said, "you don't want a pancake or anything?" I said "no thanks"
I sat and watched my friend eat gross bacon and crepes with butter and whipped cream all over them. It was kind of nauseating. I'm glad I already ate a terrific breakfast at home!

I don't think I want to patronize a place that won't accommodate vegans. I feel bad for people that have allergies- but I guess in their eyes its their business they can run it how they want. I'm just not going to give them any of my money. I was thinking of going on line and writing a review to let people know they won't reasonably accommodate vegans or dairy allergies.

And in my 2 whole months as a vegan, this is the first time I have run into an issue where a place wouldn't be flexible to accommodate me (except for my SIL's wedding). I think considering, thats pretty good. I think this place is just in poor customer service.
Did you tell the waitress that you had dietary restrictions? I can't blame restaurants for not being willing to cater to special requests to suit everyone's fancy, but if they won't make an effort to make the difference between you eating or not eating, then they deserve a thrashing.
 

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This is why My dream is to open a chain worldwide that is Vegan friendly and free from animal cruelty , I am tired of going places and or other Vegans or soon to be Vegans being hurt like this. I thought when you place an order of something its what you want and how you want it, its ashame you went through this.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
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Originally Posted by paperhanger View Post

Did you tell the waitress that you had dietary restrictions? I can't blame restaurants for not being willing to cater to special requests to suit everyone's fancy, but if they won't make an effort to make the difference between you eating or not eating, then they deserve a thrashing.
yes- I was thinking that- what about allergies?
I felt it was a reasonable accommodation. Really. I know what a kitchen looks like. You take your prepped potatoes over from this bin, you take the spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes form the omelette bins over here and you put them in a frying pan for 2 minutes. Not unreasonable at all. The prices were high too- its not like they are underpaid to do something out of the ordinary.

I am currently writing up my "review" on a word document. heh heh.
I will share with you when done!
 

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Oh wow what a shame
I feel really bad that it happened to you! From your posts, turning vegan has been awkward at times for you, I really wanted it to go well. I'm going to watch out for "No substitution" policies in the future, I know you can't add anything IN in wagamamas, but you can take stuff out, which I guess is the same thing. Although that said, I've had them swap the noodles for me before, so clearly it's not that strict.

Also... your friend didn't mind sitting there eating a big breakfast while you drank water? I mean, it's not wrong for her to do that, being vegan is your choice... but I'd feel really bad about that if it were me.
 

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I'm sorry the meal didn't work out for you, but I'm glad that you've decided to write a review for this place. Every time I hear things like this it surprises me again. We live in a world full of people who follow different diets for different reasons. The idea that a restaurant wouldn't want to at least try and make every customer happy baffles me.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
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Originally Posted by Identity_thief View Post

From your posts, turning vegan has been awkward at times for you, I really wanted it to go well.
thats really nice of you to say

Its not going so badly- I think in the beginning its just really tough for my family and friends to get on board- I am finding myself surrounded by very close minded people, and realizing just how non vegan friendly my city is. I think when you are a mom - making this decision for your family subjects you to more scrutiny than if you are doing it just for yourself.
I also come to you guys and vent/ let off steam- so you probably only hear the bad most of the time.
It has been overall positive for me and I am never looking back- I love my new lifestyle and the surprises that come with it! Its definitely a learning curve for me and my family- and I know it was a rocky start, but I expect to learn as much as possible and take the bad experiences as stepping stones in my journey.

Yes- my friend is weird. She was like- you aren't going to order anything? Just get the home fries plain!
I was like- no thanks, I shouldn't have to eat a side dish when everyone here is free to order a full meal. After that I tried to distract her from it with conversation- so she wouldn't try to make it an issue. I realized also that watching people eating bacon is gross. :p

I wrote a couple reviews- I will try Yelps too. I will post the links later on.
 

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Definitely post on Yelp. That's where I usually read reviews (in addition to veg-friendly phone apps). And I will not go to a restaurant that will not substitute or work with you. There was a place in my hometown several years ago that my family went to several times a month. They changed owners and they stopped letting my mom get steamed veggies instead of french fries. Not even if she paid extra. After that time, we didn't go back. So let me get this straight? I'm paying 15-20$ a plate, and I can't swap out something as simple as French fries? Similar thing happened at Coco's. I really hate ordering salads because more often than not they come with dead animal. A couple of weeks back I asked if I could swap out the chicken for a veggie patty. They could...but it was going to cost me an extra dollar...okay, so for $9 I get a head of lettuce and some tortilla chips? To get a veggie patty you are going to charge me MORE? I definitely am more choosey about where I'll go. Work with me? I'll come back and rate you positively online. Give me trouble? I won't come back and you'll get a negative review! Sorry you had to deal with this!
 

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I'm sorry you had to had to go through this. Perhaps you should choose the next time you go out. I've never understood why a restaurant would do that. It gets negative reviews, not only through yelp, but on messageboards and other websites like vb. I'm sort of with pvl, only not just veg*an, but allergien free (no wheat, soy, dairy, eggs, fish, shellfish, nuts or tree nuts). So anyone can have a lunch or dinner or brunch and not feel bad about getting a side while everyone else eats a big hearty meal.
 
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