This is some serious vegan comfort food.
Posted on 07 / 23 / 2013
Champs is a cute little place with a vintage diner look and kitschy decor, serving up some serious vegan comfort food. During our recent visit we encountered friendly service, generous portions, and very reasonable prices. The menu contains a plethora of interesting and tasty-sounding items - so many that it was really difficult to choose!
From the appetizer menu, we tried the Buffalo Wings... and enjoyed them immensely. Roasted strips of tempeh were coated in a thick, tangy, spicy sauce, then served alongside celery sticks and a cool, creamy dipping sauce. The wings were so good, the sauce wasn't really necessary - but the sauce was so good, I wouldn't dream of leaving it off!
We also tried two sandwiches. The Tuna Melt was very good, though it didn't taste like tuna. It reminded me more of chicken salad than tuna; there was no sea-like flavor at all. The texture of the salad, however, was perfect. A thick layer was shmeared onto a nice marbled rye, then topped off with gooey cheeze and sliced tomato. It didn't satisfy my nagging tuna craving... but it was quite tasty overall.
Now, the Reuben... IT was AMAZING. Champs' is made with tender, juicy slices of seitan, again on that nice marbled rye. The sauerkraut had great texture, adding a welcome bit of crunch without making the bread soggy. Gooey cheeze and a generous slathering of Russian dressing pushed it well over the edge of awesomeness. I salivate just thinking about it. Winner!
Both sandwiches came with a simple side salad of mixed baby greens, lightly dressed with a bright vinaigrette. I also ordered a side of Oven-Roasted Fries. It was an enormous amount of food! But I really wanted to try the fries, and they were freakin' tasty. Next time I'll do them up with bacon & cheeze. Yeeeeah.
On the not-so-perfect side, I will say that service was a bit slow; it kind of took forever for our food to come out. I wouldn't go here unless I had ample time for a leisurely meal. It was also very hot in there. By the end of the meal we were swampy as hell. I recommend not going during a nasty heat wave.
The food, though, was fantastic, and our overall experience wasn't overshadowed by these things. I really look forward to going back again and sampling more of their menu! We'll just wait for cooler weather...
Large, interesting menu, Big portions at reasonable prices, The Reuben is Love
Their A/C wasn't meant for heat waves, Tiny and popular = always a wait, Cash only! with an on-premise ATM