When I found out I had to spend a few weeks in Peoria, IL... the first thing I did was check out what the food situation would be like there. I can't remember if I have ever mentioned it, but two very good websites that I use to look for vegan-friendly restaurants are Happycow.net and urbanspoon.com Most vegans are probably already aware, but just in case.. That is where I go when I am going somewhere I don't know anyone.
Searching for vegan restaurants in Peoria, I found zero. three listed as vegetarian-friendly. Not much, so it pretty much means I have to find the ones that aren't listed. There are always some that aren't. Here are few of the places I found and I will be looking to add them to happy cow when I get home.
1. Kellehers - Not a lot on the menu, but they do have a veggie sandwhich and it is good. Roasted vegetables and fries.. can't really be beat. They had some salads that could be altered as well. Not much else without attempting to try and create your own dish (I didn't attempt, but maybe next time). Prices are cheap and overall not a bad spot.
2. Pasand - There are a couple Indian restaurants in the city. Always a safew bet to find a full vegan meal. I was told one was better than the other, so that is what chose. Nice spot down by the university. It was a little grungy inside, but the food was pretty good! They didn't have a lot vegan, but enough that it was no trouble to eat. There is another Indian-Pakistinian restaurant that I want to try. Maybe next month
3.Sushigawa - Little sushi restaurnat right by the hotel. Good food. Actually, great food. They are happy to make maki vegan for you and have a few rolls on there that I had never seen before. Cheap too. Highly reccommended.
4. Five Guys - I wasn't sure about putting this up on the list, but in all fairness, they have a veggie snadwhich available and if that doesn't work, you can fill a greasy food craving with their fries.
The not so great, but I tried anyways
1. Alexander's - They were actually pretty good. I got a veggie skewer, fries and a salad and it was pretty tastey. The reason for the not so great is really, a lot of vegan people probably don't want to be at a restaurant full of gigantic steaks that people grill themselves. That thought definitely crossed my mind while I was there. They do ahve sunflower seeds for a salad topping. That was actually pretty sweet.
2. Joe's Crab Shak - This place was not good. The non-vegans didn't seem to like their meal and all I could find to eat was a garden salad and fries. I told them no meat, no cheese etc for the salad and my ended up with meat on it. To make it worse the service was slow so I didn't bother getting a new one.
3. Peoria Hofbrau - I wasn't going to put this one on, because I didn't end up going. Nothing vegan on the menu and when we called to see if they could accommodate they just said no. They said that was the first time anyone ever asked them that before. I considered being a trouble maker and going anyways to see if I could get them to do anything, but to be honest, I was tired of eating side dishes and bailed out. I ate in my room instead. Sometimes it's just not worth the fight.
I have been purposely just going with the group while I have been in Peoria, but I know there are a few vegan-friendly spots that I have yet to try. Next trip, I will be seeing if I can convince anyone to join me.
I am now back home in Edmonton, but got consumed by pet trouble this weekend and missed a couple days. I hope to be back on track tomorrow. Not much makes me exhausted except dealing with a sick pet and vets. It was a long day with emergency room and dealing with vets that have never treated a guinea pig. Going to attempt an early night and have a fresh start tomorrow.