I'll admit that I was hoping for a bit more than the experience I had. Still, I wish there were a restaurant like Green Sprout in the Raleigh-Durham area, where I live. Green Sprout reminds me of the now-closed Vegetable Garden, of Bethesda MD, but the quality is not quite as good.
I drove down to Atlanta to audition for the show "Jeopardy." Thanks to Happy Cow, I was able to pre-plan where to eat for dinner. One of the places I chose was Green Sprout.
When I called Green Sprout prior to my visit, I got a generic voice mail message (no mention of the restaurant on the voice mail message) that said the voice mailbox was full. Huh? I thought the restaurant must be out of business. But since it was close to my hotel, I drove over there. It was open! One minus for not having a functioning voice mail system that provides an appropriate greeting.
On entering the restaurant, I was greeted with a smell that I call "old restaurant smell." Not pleasant, but not noticeable once you're there for a few minutes. One minus for the smell. I mentioned to the woman who greeted me about the voice mail, but she did not really seem to care.
Somehow, I expect vegan restaurants to be a bit more effusive in their greeting of customers, but usually I am disappointed. Not much of a greeting here, but perhaps I got off on the wrong foot by mentioning the voice mail.
The restaurant has a good menu, with nice descriptions of each dish. How nice to be able to choose from various soups/appetizers/entrees that are all vegan.
Running out of room, so I must truncate my review. I got a Chef's Special dish: Empire Soy Chicken (mild), which contains soy chicken (which I was told is non-GMO) and veggies. The "chicken" is battered and fried. The food was hot (in terms of temperature)--a big plus for that. The veggies were cooked very well--just the right amount of crunch/softness. The sauce was tasty but a bit too sweet and cloyingly thick (corn starch?).
The proprietor seemed to know his regulars, but I was not afforded any special treatment. My server did not even check to see if my food was okay--a minus for that in any restaurant.
There is an extra charge for rice ($1.00 brown, $.75 white)--why not just include it with the entree, as most Chinese restaurants do?
Nice new age music playing.
Though I did not feel welcomed or appreciated as a customer, I'd still go back to try other dishes. And I still wish that there were a place like this in my area.
Cons: Funky smell