Monday, April 13, 2015

Vegan in Gualala

My husband Phil and I took a drive up the coast and spent the weekend in beautiful Gualala. I wasn't able to find out much before we left about whether I'd have any trouble finding vegan options there, so I took along some bananas and a couple of breakfast items and hoped for the best.

We arrived in Gualala at around 7:00 p.m., just in time for dinner. There was a restaurant called Trinks Cafe right by our hotel, so we decided to check it out. Apparently, their menu changes daily, but we were fortunate to be there on a night when they were offering a quinoa and black bean burger, which was vegan if the cheese and mayonnaise were omitted. With a generous portion of avocado and a spicy slaw on top, it was a pretty tasty burger!

We went back to Trinks Cafe for breakfast the next morning. I had this hearty bowl of steel-cut oats with walnuts and chopped apples, and the chef substituted soy milk for the cream that usually goes in this dish.

After breakfast, we drove farther up the coast, hoping to see some whales. We didn't, but it was a beautiful drive anyhow. For lunch, we stopped in at the very vegan-friendly Thai Kitchen in Anchor Bay Village. The menu includes a note indicating that many of their items can be made vegan, and the server was very knowledgeable about vegan concerns. I ordered this wonderful bowl of pad broccoli with tofu and added ginger and ate every bite.

For dinner, we went to St. Orres, a gorgeous hotel and Zagat-rated restaurant that has a Russian look to it. I had checked the menu ahead of time and it didn't have anything vegan or anything that looked capable of being made vegan, but there was a notation that they could accommodate any dietary restriction or requirement. When I called to make our reservation, I let the staff know I was vegan, and then waited to see what they'd have for me to eat.

All of the dinners at St. Orres come with soup and salad. The server brought me a bowl of butternut squash soup without the cream that was included in the soup for the other diners. It was delicious!

My salad was a simple but refreshing mixed green salad, with cherry tomatoes and balsamic vinaigrette.

For my entrée, the server brought me this beautifully-prepared mixture of vegetables: various types of squash, carrots, tomatoes, asparagus, mushrooms, and spinach.

Since there was a vegan dessert on their regular menu, I couldn't pass it up. This fresh lemon sorbet with blackberries was the perfect way to top off this elegant meal.

I think it's safe to say my weekend in Gualala was a huge vegan success!

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