Ballet Restaurant

I had a great trip to Seattle last week. Lots of good people and good food.

I mentioned Cyber-Dogs in the previous entry, but another place I enjoyed was the (not-fully-vegetarian) Ballet. Here’s my review, with more reviews on the way.

Finally, a good vegan hot dog

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I’ve long said that while there are amazing meatless sausages and hamburgers and chicken and on and on and on, all of the meatless hot dogs I’ve tasted—and I’ve tried all the major brands—have fallen short of the real things in terms of taste and texture. And most of them have a funny smell, too. I started to think that there was no such thing as a really good veggie hot dog.

I’m happy to report I was wrong. Unfortunately, I had to come to Seattle to find that out.

After getting into town last night at about 8:30, I called over to Cyber-Dogs, located just three blocks from where I’m staying. I figured they might be closing soon if there weren’t already. Fortuantely, they’re open until midnight every night, so I wandered over there for a second dinner (the one on the plane wasn’t terribly satisfying).

On a recommendation from an employee, I ordered the El Bandido with chili, vegan cheese, and avocado on a 7-grain roll. Let me tell you, folks: this hot dog was some good eats. The dog itself wasn’t an uncomfortable chewy texture and didn’t have the funny aftertaste. It was how I remember hot dogs. The chili was also quite good and piled high on the dog and it all equaled up to one heck of a meal.

On my way out, I chatted with the awesome Russian woman (Tania?) who runs the joint. She convinced me to buy a vegan cookie she had made (damn fine!) and told me about her hope to open up a bakery in Rosslyn that sells a wider variety of vegan baked goods.

Be sure to schedule a visit if you’re in the area. It’s well worth it (and you get 20 minutes of computer time for free if you order some food).

Pigs, Tigers, Dogs, and Fires

I apologize to you now for starting the week off with a story like this one: Woman who offered pig to lure tiger faces cruelty charge.

Linda Meredith drove from her home to C Road and Okeechobee Road with her Yorkshire pig Monday shortly after learning that the 600-pound tiger belonging to a one-time B-movie Tarzan Steve Sipek had escaped his 5-acre compound.

Meredith, wearing a tiger print and a gold lion medallion, pleaded with deputies to take the piglet named Baby by its hind legs or twist its ears to make it squeal and attract the hungry tiger.

It should be noted that Ms. Meredith transported the pig in the trunk of her car in 90 degree heat. “Even pigs transported for slaughter are required by law to be moved humanely,” Animal Care and Control Director Diane Sauve said. (Of course, we all know that the law may say that, but the reality is much different.)

I feel I should balance out that story a bit with this one: ‘Moody’ pooch alerts family in time to escape fire.

Rhonda McCrory’s friends and family members don’t really like her Pomeranian, Buddy, because of his grumpy disposition. They’ll probably change their minds now.

As flames swept through the kitchen of her Pecan Boulevard home, his barking awakened her just in time so she and her children could escape without injury.

(Both stories via Obscure Store)

Vegetarian = Vegan to United

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I don’t fly often, but as I mentioned earlier, I’m headed to Seattle next week and that will require putting my fears aside and getting on a plane. On my flight there, I’ll be served a meal, so naturally, I wanted to get a meat-free meal. While I have no idea exactly what I’ll be served, I came across this page about vegetarian meal options on United’s site. Interestingly, if you specify that you’re a lacto-ovo vegetarian, you will be served a vegan meal! I guess that way, they figure everyone’s happy and it makes planning a little easier for them. United First and United Business passengers, however, are offered the option of dairy desserts and milk, should they so desire. I ordered a vegan meal, but was happy to see that even if they misread it or enter it into their system incorrectly, I’ll still get what I ordered.

I thought I had remembered reading about specialty meal requests being dropped by a lot of airlines as a cost-cutting measure, but apparently that’s not the case with United. I’ll be sure to report back on exactly how soggy my giant plate of canned string beans is.

Calling Seattle residents (Sea-talians?)

I’m headed to Seattle next week for a conference. Any suggestions on good places to get some good veg eats? I’ve got a nice listing of restaurants, but prefer personal recommendations.

I believe I’ll be in the south part of the Capitol Hill neighborhood, as far as I can tell, and will be relying on either my feet or public transportation to get around.

And if there are any readers in Seattle that might want to meet up, drop me a line.