Archive for the ‘Restaurants’ category

The Post East

April 10th, 2016

 

So many new places to get lunch are popping up each day in the Nashville area. It can be overwhelming at times to keep up with them all. So much so that one can be overlooked that has been around for awhile.

This weekend we went for a quick lunch at The Post East in East Nashville. A look at the website gave us an idea of the vegan offerings so we knew we would have a few choices.

The Post East is situated on the corner of Fatherland and South 17th so depending on when you choose to visit parking may be a chore. They do have a small lot with about 6 spaces. Upon entering we were met with what I thought to be cats dying in a brawl while their tails were lit aflame. After discovering it was a just a bluegrass band I looked to see what outdoor seating was available only to find those 2 tables were already occupied, likely with people hoping to distance themselves from the barrage of bad banjo.

I shut the band out of my mind and we stepped to the counter to take a look at the menu. A tall bearded man greeted us in a gruff, hurried manner and we told him we would like a few minutes with the menu. We compared then brunch menu and the regular menu and decided on our lunch. I decided on the Tofu Italiano, Chickpea Salad Sandwich and the kid wanted the vegan Belgian Waffle. We were told they were out of tofu, so back the menu for a second I went and came up with the BLT with tempeh. I was interested to see how they prepared their tempeh and if they served it with a tempeh bacon like most vegan BLTs.

Finding a seat wasn’t too difficult. I think the fighting cats (read: bad bluegrass band) had driven off many or discouraged a few from dropping in. We found our table and waited. About 15 minutes passed and the kid’s waffle was brought to the table followed by, nothing. After a couple minutes of her staring at her food waiting for her parents to be served theirs before eating we told her to please eat. A kid needs her lunch regardless and manners have no place when hunger is in play. After reading every menu on the wall and discussing the coffee selection (The Post East only upcharges 25 cents for soy, almond or coconut milks in your latte) after 20 more minutes of waiting our sandwiches were brought to the table. Now, 20 minutes I could understand if perhaps the restaurant was so crowded it was standing room only or the sandwiches were some wild, fancy affair with a plethora of specially- prepared ingredients but before was was placed a chickpea salad sandwich consisting of a couple tablespoons of chickpea mixture with a slice of wilted lettuce on untoasted white bread served with blue corn tortilla chips. The BLT I was served caught my eye immediately. “that’s some fancy tempeh bacon.” I thought to myself only to realize that it was indeed pork bacon. I inspected the sandwich to find the aforementioned bacon resting on the stem tops of tomatoes, something that should never be served especially in a restaurant setting, between two pieces of toasted bread and served with the same blue corn tortilla chips.  After confirming that I had indeed requested the vegan BLT I told the server and she apologized and took it back. Less than one minute I saw her returning with my vegan BLT.  I thought this unusually quick considering it took over half an hour to prepare these sandwiches to begin. The sandwich I got back didn’t look much different. The bread seemed to be untoasted now as though the had rushed out a new sandwich and didn’t toast the bread to save time. I was OK with that. However on checking the kitchen had only replaced the top piece of toasted bread with untoasted. The pork bacon was now three thick slices of tempeh but the stem tops of the tomatoes were still there and the bottom slice of bread was the original toasted piece. Clearly they just pulled off the pork bacon, added the tempeh and put a fresh slice of bread on top. I won’t get into how many flavors of wrong this is.

Chickpea Salad Sandwich - The Post East - Nashville Vegan Nashveggie

The Chickpea Salad Sandwich was tiny and uninspired at $9.

I took a bite of the tempeh and found there was absolutely no marinating done. It was a cold piece of tempeh that had been on a grill for a few seconds at some point in its sad existence only to add some black marks to the exterior. Trying the chickpea salad sandwich gave no more happiness. Trying to come up with another word to describe bland is just bland. This sandwich could have used some type of spice or seasoning. It seemed it was just chickpeas tossed in a mayonnaise with celery, onion, raisins and little to nothing else. I set my eyes on trying the kid’s waffle which at this point was nearly gone with the time that had passed. Taking a bite I found it to be very good. Surprisingly so since I had set my bar quite low after the sandwiches. The waffle was done right and I only wish the sandwiches were as well.

Vegan Belgian Waffle at The Post East - Nashville Vegan Nashveggie

The kid’s vegan Belgian Waffle. An oatmeal waffle with maple syrup and a large sliced strawberry (extra charge). This was the one good item from our order.

Uninspiring and bland vegan food will win no meat-eater over. This is exactly what they expect. Vegans won’t return to eat the bland food. This is the worst thing I can think of to encounter in a restaurant serving a vegan menu because it plays right into the hand of the myth that vegan food is bad and has no flavor. The Post East is doing vegan food no favors with their vegan offerings. I will check back and hope things change at The Post East.

The Post East
1701 Fatherland Street
Nashville, Tennessee 37206
(615) 457-2920
Hours: 7AM – 6PM everyday

 

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New Vegan Choices

August 9th, 2015

There was a time not so long ago that if you wanted to find something vegan in a Nashville restaurant you were limited to a frozen veggie burger or a burrito joint. These days many new places have opened their doors in Nashville to vegans and some old places have expanded their menus to accommodate a vegan diet.

With the influx of new places to dine for a vegan one thing seems to remain constant when I ask people their favorite place to go: There’s no one place people pick over another. Many still choose a burrito place as their go-to and some swear by the upscale restaurants. So, what’s your favorite? Do you like to eat around or do you have a single place that you set your sights on anytime you have a chance to go to a restaurant? Bonus points for your favorite order at the restaurant.

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Sofritas at Chipotle

October 10th, 2014

 

Chipotle Sofritas

Every vegan has been in the situation before: Going out to eat and no vegan options so you settle for the burrito joint. You’ll be able to get a black bean and rice burrito with a spoon of guacamole if you’re lucky. Now nothing is wrong with black beans and I’m never one to shun some guacamole but sometimes you need a little extra on your burrito and I don’t mean lettuce and cucumbers.

Chipotle has been rolling out their Sofritas, a spicy seasoned tofu, for a while now. Presently, it is available in 24 states. On October 13th, that will expand to the south and southeast US. That means you’ll be able to get a little extra protein on your vegan or vegetarian burrito in Nashville.

I was invited to try Sofritas last week and even though I have traveled out west a couple times this year where Sofritas is now served at all Chipotle restaurants this was my first time trying it.

As you go down the line and and get you rice and beans the Sofritas is right there next to the chicken and beef. I know what you’re thinking – CROSS CONTAMINATION! – because, let’s be honest, vegans think about those things. If you’re vegan don’t lie, you think about it every single time someone touches cheese and then asks if you want it on your burrito making an assumption. Well, this is a fast casual eatery so things happen but it has it’s own spoon and at the restaurant I was at the Sofritas was behind all other animal products so no dripping would occur as other items were served. Set you mind at ease or don’t eat out, right?

Chipotle is a restaurant that is big on local and fresh ingredients. Of course sourcing local tofu all over the country is not an easy task so they have chosen one supplier, Hodo Soy of San Francisco, as their tofu supplier. Chipotle goes as local as possible with their other ingredients. They source from a 350 mile radius of the restaurant’s market for ingredients such as tomatoes, which are hand chopped each day in the restaurant, and lettuce. The rice used in the Nashville restaurants is grown in Arkansas. Bet you didn’t know there were rice patties in The Natural State!

When I tried the Sofritas I was expecting a bit of heat, just a mild bite, since it is seasoned with roasted poblano and chipotle chilis but it was a very mild, sweet flavor. The tofu is a super firm tofu and it is in tiny bits. It is very chewy and holds the flavor of the sauce very well.

A Sofritas burrito is $6.50. While you may be accustomed to getting your vegetarian burrito at Chipotle with a heaping scoop of guacamole included that is not the case with a Sofritas burrito, guacamole is extra. I opted for guacamole on my Sofritas but in the future may leave it off as I thought it didn’t blend well with the spices of the Sofritas and it made the burrito too heavy flavored. I would rather have the guacamole on the side with chips.

Now is your chance to try Sofritas courtesy of Chipotle and Nashveggie.com. I will be giving away cards for a free burrito. Leave a comment below tell me, and Chipotle, your favorite thing to order at Chipotle.  I will also choose another winner on Twitter. To enter there just retweet this tweet and be sure you follow @nashveggie:

 

All winners will be chosen at random on Friday, October 24.

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J. Alexander’s Update

May 30th, 2014

For a while J. Alexander’s had had an excellent veggie burger that has been vegan. However, on a recent visit I inquired about the veggie burger once again. I was told that the recipe for this burger had changed recently with a menu revamp and now contained eggs and that the bun now had an egg wash. Unfortunately, for the local veggie burger fans this is one less choice.

Do you have a favorite veggie burger in the Nashville area? Let us know in the comments where you find it and be sure to specify if it is vegan.

 

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Chipotle Pinto Beans Are Now Vegan (and Vegetarian)?

September 18th, 2013

Chipotle Pinto Beans Vegan Vegetarian No Bacon

Most of us know that Chipotle’s pinto beans have long contained bacon as an ingredient, as plainly stated on their menus. This leaves the vegan or vegetarian looking for a burrito at Chipotle with black beans as their only option.

I recently received an email form a reader to inform me that his local Chipotle was serving pinto beans that are vegan. I had to confirm this news so I called each Chipotle location in the Nashville area as well as the restaurant in Huntsville, Alabama just to get an outside-of-the-area report. With each call I was told that indeed the pinto beans are now bacon-free.

Checking the Chipotle website the ingredients for the pinto beans still list bacon. This ingredient change may be gradually moving out to locations and is still in progress. Be sure to ask before getting pinto beans on your burrito.

So, if pinto beans are your favorite burrito bean feel free to safely munch away at Chipotle. Also, let me know in the comments if your Chipotle is serving the new pinto bean recipe.

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