The hardest part of all this work travel is looking for healthy vegetarian places to eat. Something that’s not your typical pizza / pasta / mex; however I did have Pizza yesterday. Yelp helps but I spend about an hour after work onsite looking for places which is a total waste of time, especially if the place falls a few stars short of the reviews.
I figured I’d start keeping a running list on this post of places that are at least vegetarian friendly, good and bad, healthy and greasy. I wasn’t planning on starting alphabetically but I am in Atlanta so here we go. I’m sure there are a ton of other places, but these are places I visited or recall I visited or within the general area of where I was since I usually don’t have a car in most cities.
- Ammazza – a wood-fire pizza joint. A cool rustic atmosphere, you can order pizza as soon as you walk in and then pick a table; or head to the bar (what I did). My Uber driver said it’s located in Cabbagetown, the bartender said it’s West Auburn but wouldn’t be surprised if it fell in another neighborhood. Eitherway, the area seems to be in the process of gentrifying but nothing bad. I was debating between the Margherita and Fresco (sauceless) pizza, nothing fancy – but ended up with the Margherita, a classic and safe bet.
- Cafe Sunflower – this is a vegetarian restaurant that has multiple locations. Went to this years ago, so don’t recall what I had, but thought it was decent enough.
- K’oriente – this is a vegetarian friendly restaurant that had a pretty long line during lunch with a few people sitting around waiting for their to-go order. Food was pretty delicious. Forgot what I ordered as it’s been over a year but it was pretty good.
- Mai Thai – Can’t really go wrong with Thai spots too often and this one was pretty good. $9 lunch includes a dish (Pad Khee Mao) with Soup or Salad. Generous portions but I devoured it.
- Piranha Killer Sushi – The Rhino Roll was pretty good but probably would like to check out other sushi spots with more options.
- Kebablicious – Food truck, I couldn’t find vegetarian options in the convention center so opt’d to get a Falafel wrap (delicious and flavorful), located on the corner of 3rd and Congress.
- Jennys’ on the Wharf – Chinese restaurant where the most interesting thing is the 2 guys that serve you. They speak fast with the heavy Chinese accent and walk fast – they are the human form of the Energizer bunny on Duracell batteries. Google users rated this place 4.2 on Google Maps, however, we all thought it barely exceed a 3. They give you PLENTY of food, however it was just not that great; and it takes 45 minutes? That seems quite excessive for Chinese food.
- Wild Cow – this is a vegetarian friendly restaurant that came highly recommended from a few sources; so naturally had to give it a shot. And the sources weren’t vegetarians themselves. About a 10 minute uber to the restaurant; initially it was a 25 minute wait. Luckily I got seated by the bar (window) in 10 minutes. Food was solid and would go here again. I believe I had the
- Kitchen Notes – inside the Omni Hotel, went there for breakfast. Waffles were amazing; however I will say I had the same waffles for dinner one night and they smeared the white sweet cream all over the waffle and it made it super sweet and hard to eat.
- Taverna Opa – This is a staple, a must stop place for anyone having a convention in Orlando. That being said I’ve been here about 5-6 times and not because I recommended it. Belly dancers at night, loud music and napkins just thrown in the air happen all the time. The food is pretty good; smash your own hummus was interesting but it was good.
- Splitsville – Downtown Disney area; same thing as Pinstripes or Lucky Strike or any of those bowling alley bar restaurants stuff.
- Paradiso 37 – Foods of North America. I didn’t see anything Canadian on the menu but I really don’t know what Canadian food is. Mainly a Mexican / Burgers joint. Loud lively place, food was ok.
- Darbar – Indian place. I really don’t think there’s any good Indian food in Orlando. The place had a good number of take outs and delivery orders. A few tables were occupied when I went in; 1 big party and 2 parties of 1 or 2. The Bombay Chaat was pretty good, a bit too sweet for my non-sweet tooth but good. The Garlic Naan (or as I heard another lady say, Nay-an) with the Palak Panner (my staple) was edible with the hot pepper athanoo they provided. Every table gets Papad, but most restaurants you get solid pieces, here they dont even fill the basket and it looks like the bottom crumbs, it was hot and oily so I know it was at least somewhat fresh. Won’t be going here again.
- Emporio – a meatball joint. What’s a vegetarian doing in a restaurant that serves only meatballs? Trying the veggie meatballs of course. I had the vegetarian (mushroom / cauliflower / beans) panini. It was ok, the texture and dryness of the meatball wasn’t the my liking – maybe it was overwhelming; not sure. I’d probably skip this place or try it over penne; but that’s about it.
- Umbrella Cafe – Cool lil coffee shop. Spoke with the owner Matt about how the Umbrella came about; the owners were all in the food industry serving up their goods in markets. How they got together to start the Umbrella Cafe, each focusing on their specialty (soups / juices / baked goods). Had a breakfast sandwich with fresh juice – both were quite delicious. Found my breakfast spot in the Pitt.
- Brooklyn Girl – Not very vegetarian friendly but they did have some great drinks and the pizza wasn’t too bad either
- Don Chito’s – This was recommended so I went after my visit to Tim’s gallery. The mushroom & poblano peppers taco was delicious. The margarita was ok. Like most Mexican restaurants you get chips n’ salsa but I didn’t – I had to ask for it after I got my meal.
- Serious Pie – Pizza spot inside the Starbucks tasting room.