Saturday, August 14, 2010

Veggie Grill, Irvine, CA

This is the wave of the future of fast food.  It's the kind of place that will eventually be in every mall and every empty shell of a MacDonalds and Burger King will be selling food like this ... if they can keep it on the shelves long enough because it'll be flying out the door faster than they can make it.

Bright and airy, (well it IS southern California ya know), The Veggie Grill at the Irvine Spectrum Shopping Center

I must say to be honest and in full disclosure, (when did I ever promise you full disclosure?? hmm??), that my brother hated, absolutely hated the food.  My wife, the other die hard carnivore loved it.  So there.  Now that being said as I looked around there was no shortage of customers happily dining on their VEGAN food.

I actually went back the next night as my daughter and niece happily went through my retirement funds at Dave and Busters across the way so these pics are a combination of both meals.
Chill Out Wings  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 6 .25
Bite sized chillin’ chickin’ with our tangy BBQ sauce.
The wings were scarily like chicken and the breading really crispy.  The chipotle ranch gave the wings a bite and creaminess reminiscent of Buffalo, (except closer to the other border), and the BBQ sauce was a sweet and not much heat.  You can see the bottle of hot sauce, looks homemade, (well, the bottle makes it look that way), which in essence is a pool of peppers although not bone searing hot.

Santa Fe Crispy Chickin’  .  .  .8 .95
Crispy fried chillin’ chickin’, lettuce, tomato, red onion, avocado, southwestern spiced vegan mayo.  

To get this here for every dish the burgers are all served with:
Served on a wheat bun with a side of red cabbage ‘slaw or chili. Sub side with: Sweetheart Fries (2.25) | Daily Soup (1.95) Steamin’ Kale (1.50) | Spring Mix Salad (1.95) | Mac-n-Cheese (2.25)

Chop-Chop Chef .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 9 .50
Chopped romaine, tempeh, veggie-steak, chillin’ chickin, green onion, roasted corn salsa with chipotle ranch dressing.

Usually I say, "big deal, salad, if you can't make a salad ... really".  This was a great salad.  It had a great fresh flavor, crunch, meatiness of the protein and a creamy dressing with a nice easy bite 

This was the Santa Fe burger.

Tomato Basil Soup
The soup was intense.  I don't know if it was cooked or raw but the tomato and basil had crisp and distinctive flavors.  Very refreshing on a warm Southern Californial day.

Chipotle BBQ .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .8 .50
Shredded veggie-steak, marinated in our tangy BBQ sauce, with chipotle ranch, caramelized onion, lettuce, tomato.

A great combination of flavors in a pulled pork kind of BBQ on a bun.  The mac and cheese had a good flavor but needed to be cooked the rest of the way through.  Crunchy pasta ... ugh.  The kale on the top of the picture has never disappointed me.

Even my wife the carnivore wanted to go back again and again.  Go figure.  MacDonalds watch out though.  If you're in Southern California you should definitely give it a try.

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