Adelaide-girl relocated to Melbourne. Healthy obsession with live music, film and performance, whiskey, wine and gin, Mexican food, brunch.
Published June 8th 2011
With The Stag welcoming people to Rundle Street, as the best place for a steak, a vegetarian could be forgiven for thinking Adelaide is full of carnivores. But nestled among designer shop fronts and amid alleys and bustling markets, there are some of the best vegie restaurants and cafes you'll probably ever find. Ever.
Vego and Lovin' It was the first vege/vegan/gluten free friendly place I ate at and it will always be my number one.
Decked out with random postcards of beautiful far off-places, sparkling mosaics, retro vinyl and black and white photos of glamorous Hollywood stars (from black and white photo days), this is a relaxed and quirky place where you can just feel free to be yourself. Try the vege hot dog with BBQ sauce or the lentil soup. Or any burger, for that matter. The serves are big, and half size options are available. Either way, the value is great. But Vego and Lovin' It gets busy, so get there early/late to beat/miss the crowd. Or be prepared to spend a little time window shopping while you wait for a table. Take the wait as the sign that it is - there's good stuff here.
If you're closer to the markets, pop in at Bliss Organic Cafe for a fair trade coffee, ethical read and the delectable Bliss Burger or Tofu Scramble. For a late breakkie, try the Wholemeal Pancakes with native fruit syrup and wash it down with a Date Shake. And perfect for winter, try the 7-Thief Anti-Cold Remedy full of so many good things and made fresh on order. Then, on your way out, check out the clothes and products for sale and find that woven bag you've been searching for.
And for a quick and satisfying work lunch, head to Thea Tea Shop - there's so much more here than tea. Step into the simple, soothing restaurant and order anything from the Taiwanese-influenced menu - you won't be disappointed. Don't forget to couple your food with one of the infamous teas in a wide range of flavours including passionfruit and lavender. And try the lotus steamed buns. You might feel full, but you'll make room for these, trust me.
There's more than these three places for a vegie/vegan to find a great meal, but this is a decent start and the menus will keep you coming back again and again and again.
Try taking a meat-eating friend along, watch their reaction when they can't find a steak and then enjoy saying "I told you so" when they realise vegie food doesn't actually kill them. There's more to tofu than meets the eye.
Why? Because your tastebuds crave it. And every vegie needs to.
When:Opening hours vary. Check each site for more info.
Where:Vego and Lovin' It is at 240 Rundle St, look for a yellow door with mosaic and head up one flight of stairs. Bliss is 7 Compton St, head for the markets. Thea is 110 Gawler Place, off Pirie Street
Cost:Varies, but generally always under $15 for a main and about $5 for a tea/shake/other beverage