HappyCow Guide

Explanation of symbols and terms used in this restaurant guide


Approximate meal price per person excluding wine/beer.
Price rating should be based on the local standards.
i.e. for the USA, as follow:
an inexpensive meal
a moderately priced meal
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an expensive meal
Many Buddhists do not eat animal products because they don't believe in killing, but most allow milk and (unfertilized) eggs. Many Chinese Buddhist don't use leeks, garlic or onions.
You pay once a fixed price and may eat all you desire.
An acronym for "bring your own bottle", "bring your own beer", or "bring your own booze". Some restaurants allow customers to do this, but may also charge a per bottle fee.
Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian
A vegetarian who includes egg and dairy produce in their diet.
A vegetarian who includes dairy products such as milk, cream, butter, margarine, yogurt, etc in their diet.
Usually vegan. A dietary and medical philosophy, yin/yang.  Emphasizes natural, whole, locally grown plant foods. May contain animal products- so ask!
Mostly Vegetarian
A diet where the majority of the meals consumed are vegetarian meals.
A vegetarian who includes eggs in their diet.
Rawist or
Raw Foodist
Someone who eats everything in it raw form. There are different types of rawists – some eat everything even meat in the raw vs. others who eat totally vegan.


A vegan is someone seeking a lifestyle free from animal products for the benefit of people, animals and the environment.
A vegan therefore eats a plant-based diet free from all animal products, including milk, eggs and honey. Most vegans do not wear leather, wool or silk. (Vegan Society)

Pronounced 'VEE-gan,' the word originated from a British man named Donald Watson who had wanted an appropriate name to describe what a vegan eats, as distinguished from other types of vegetarianism. He called his newsletter "The Vegan News" and described veganism as "the practice of living on fruits, nuts, vegetables, grains, and other wholesome non-animal products."
Vegan-friendly refers to businesses which offer a fair amount of vegan options. On HappyCow, this may refer to a vegetarian or "vegetarian-friendly" restaurant.
A vegetarian is someone living on a diet of foods derived from plants, with or without eggs, dairy products, and/or honey.
A vegetarian does not eat any meat, poultry, game, fish, shellfish or crustacea, or slaughter by-products. (Vegetarian Society)
Originated from Latin word vegetare, which means to grow; the word was made popular by the vegetarian society at Ramsgate England in 1847.
Vegetarian-friendly refers to businesses which offer a fair amount of vegetarian options. On HappyCow, menus of vegetarian restaurants listed under the "vegetarian-friendly" option should be at least 70% vegetarian.
Means: "vegetarian and / or vegan".

Other Related Terms
A non vegetarian who consumes seafood and / or fish as the only animal content in their diet.
A non vegetarian who consumes seafood and / or fish as well as birds as the only animal content in their diet.
A word coined in the early 1990s to describe someone who eats vegetarian foods at home but will go along with meat, fish, or fowl in a restaurant or as a guest.
From the Rastafari movement that originated in 1930s Jamaica. Ital cuisine is based on scriptural dietary guidelines and pacifism. Food is vegan except for honey, though some Ital restaurants also serve fish.
Meat reducer
A person endeavoring to cut down on the meat content of their diet.

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