The Gay Vegans

A note to restaurant owners

Well, to be honest up front, this is more than a note.

Mike and I eat out often. We have our favorites and also check out new places to us often. I have have had so many “not good” experiences in the last several months that I decided it was time to write about them.

I won’t share which restaurants I have had experiences in. I’ll also add that we typically only go to restaurants where we think we can get a delish vegan meal.

First I’d like to offer a kind word of advice to restaurants that have no interest in serving vegan options or bringing in people who want a delish vegan dish. I guess this is more of a request. If you fall into this category, no judgement, simply let people know. That would be sweet. Then we don’t waste our time, and you and your staff don’t get irritated. I honestly don’t care if you think vegans are difficult to cook for or that you love beef. I’m there to have a delish vegan meal. I didn’t come into your restaurant to cause a ruckus or debate food with you. There are many ways to communicate to people that you don’t serve vegan dishes. Save us all the time. Thank you.

Now to restaurants that do want to serve delish vegan food and welcome people who want this type of food.

If you’re not an all-vegan spot, please label dishes that are vegan or can be made vegan. This is super helpful.

Please put as much time in creating delish vegan meals as you do other meals. We love amazing food. And serving crappy vegan food is not good for veganism (or for you).

Please teach your staff about veganism. Getting an “I’m not sure” when asking about whether a dish is vegan or not leads me to believe that the person serving me my meal is unsure of what they are serving me, which doesn’t bring a high level of confidence.

Please keep your unused tables clean. My expectation isn’t that a table is cleaned immediately after a customer leaves, which is different from walking into a place where more than half of the empty tables are dirty. The cleanliness deal also refers to your restrooms. If your restroom is dirty it makes me think that your kitchen might be dirty and then I question whether to stay or not.

When I write about restaurants I look at delish vegan options and hospitality. The way your staff treats people matters. Kindness is super easy. Guests asking about ingredients only want to make sure they’re not consuming anything they don’t wish to consume. A kind, friendly server is a huge deal.

I hope this short list is helpful. A couple of delish vegan options on your menu can certainly change your business plan and bring so many more people in. I am frequently going out to eat with a group of people and I am the only vegan, yet the restaurant is chosen based on what has options for me. That ten top in the back with one vegan could certainly help on a slow Monday night.

Thank you for reading.

About Dan Hanley

Gay and vegan in the burbs (of Los Angeles). I blog about veganism, equality, compassion, activism, politics, spirituality, and our awesome life experiences. The "s" includes my husband, Mike! I want this blog to be a tool to build bridges among communities and to inspire people to get involved and vote.