Missing Options

On Saturday, the Js and I went out to the Olive Branch in Marsden, which they’d been to before and highly recommended.

The place is/was lovely, and the food was really good. Well worth the visit if you’re in the area.

There was one aspect that was really disappointing, though – and that was the vegetarian options. Both of the Js are veggie, and they’d said that the Olive Branch usually had a good selection.  On this occasion though, the option was pasta. Fair enough, it’s “Ribbons of pasta, sauteed with mushrooms, garlic & sundried tomato, goats cheese & pine nuts“, but all the same, it’s pasta.

I think it’s still tremendously disappointing to go out to a restaurant and only see one or two fairly desultory veggie options. It just shows a complete lack of imagination and/or interest in the veggie market – and there’s a lot of vegetarians out there.

Even more importantly, if Herself had come along as well, she’d not have been able to eat anything, as she’s a) veggie and b) wheat-intolerant. Now sure, the Olive Branch says that you can let them know about food allergies/issues when ordering, but by then it’s a bit sodding late in some cases.

Doing good vegetarian options doesn’t take much – even a vegetarian stir-fry with some nice spices and a sauce is easily doable – and there are plenty of options out there. I just don’t know why the options aren’t more imaginative. Sure, not everyone is going to run a business like Greens in Didsbury, Manchester which is entirely vegetarian, but any decent chef could get some inspiration from the ideas there, or in any other veggie cookbook.

3 Comments on “Missing Options”

  1. Matt says:

    Sometimes, not often, but sometimes, if you say that you literally can’t eat anything on the menu, the chef will get creative and sometimes the result is nice.


  2. sarah d says:

    Also, what’s with the idea that unless you’re a vevgetarian you can’t eat a meat-free dish? Why do all meals have to have meat? Surely these chefs are capable of making amazing foods without meat in them, without going “tut, not the vegetarians, I can’t be arsed” or whatever.

    Speaking as a meat eater who gets funny looks for picking the vegetarian option when it looks nice.

  3. lyle says:

    You and me both on the “picking the veggie option if it looks good”.

    It beats me – I’d have thought you could be just as inspired with non-meat as with-meat.

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