My preference will be to eat at a vegan restaurant, but on the occasion that I go out to eat at a "regular" restaurant, here are a few tips on how to order.
People always ask what are you going to eat, how do I order at a restaurant that does not cater to vegans. Well here are a few tips to help.
- Check the menu. Most restaurants have their menus available online. You can go through it to see if there are any options at all available to you. Some menus have their dished coded to specify if they are spicy or vegan (vegan friendly/vegetarian).
- Call the restaurant. You can always call ahead and ask if they have vegan/vegetarian options or if they are willing to accommodate you.
- The predicable choice, order a salad. Many times the restaurant is perfectly fine in you customizing your order. If you opt to not have the cheese or the dressing with dairy, they can either substitute it with other vegetable options such as kalamata olives and/or a vinaigrette dressing on the side.
- Soups are also another option. Great options include lentil, squash or carrot & ginger soups.I would definitely recommend asking what is in the soup. Specially if it has chicken stock or dairy, etc just to be on the safe side.
- Custom make yourself a dish of some of the side dishes. Sometimes restaurants have vegetable options as simply a side dish such as spinach with garlic, brussels sprouts or french fries.
- At Italian restaurants, pasta with marinara sauce is a great option.
I recently went to Lightkeepers, an oceanfront restaurant and bar located in Key Biscayne Florida, which serves contemporary cooking with a focus on local and seasonal — the menu relies on locally sourced ingredients — cheeses from Winter Park, beef from Ocoee, and snapper from Key West.
To start off, I had the Young Kale & Belgium Endive Salad. The salad includes sand pears, heirloom radish, cured papaya with a pear vinaigrette. I opted to not have the Cypress Point Creamery Havarti as it is cream/dairy based.
I accompanied that with some simple garlic fries.
For desert, I decided to have their Coconut Sorbet. Sorbet contains just fruit and sugar—no dairy.
The Ritz-Carlton Key Biscayne
455 Grand Bay Drive
Key Biscayne, FL 33149