Posted by happycowgirl at 10/26/11 12:03:38Happy Cow will have the highest quality listings with the best reviews for vegan, vegetarian and truly veg-friendly restaurants. Plus, HC has invaluable, I believe even life-saving tools like this forum, the chat function and private messaging where you can connect with other like-minded people. But if I understand your question right, you're asking if there's a site that helps vegans wade through all the other crappy restaurants out there.
Kind of, I guess. There is vegguide.org. They won't tell you what to order necessarily but they list more omni restaurants. It doesn't have all the interactive features that HappyCow has, but if you are out in the middle of nowhere and desperate to find even a salad bar at a Ruby Tuesday or a Boca Burger at a Red Robin vegguide can often be of assistance.
There is also vegdining.com which I keep an eye on but I've found it's listings are sparse.
You can use yelp.com and narrow it down by category (vegan or vegetarian). What they consider "vegan" and "vegetarian" are sometimes laughable but it can be a general guide.
For vegan fast food options, this is a pretty good list: http://aveganlife.blogspot.com/2006/03/vegan-fast-food-options.html
As you can see, nothing tops The Cow for getting helpful information. Hope this answers your question.
Posted by mlpMerriweather at 10/26/11 22:38:22Thanks so much for all the info!
But I was thinking in terms of looking up which items are vegan at, say, Marie Callender's. My family was planning to celebrate a birthday there or at a local Mexican place recently and after I went to all the trouble of calling them and grilling them about ingredients in various components of various dishes, we ended up going to a third place entirely.
It would be a huge time saver if, especially with chain restaurants, someplace allowed all of us to post about info from email exchanges or phone calls with "corporate," or just the restaurant. I try to do this on Facebook just for the places I visit regularly so that people I know can see what to order, but it would be nice if I could contribute the info to one central location and find out about other restaurants from other people. Like the list you posted, mine isn't very interactive.
I can only drag my omni friends/family/coworkers to veg restaurants so many times, sadly, so I guess I will keep doing internet research and explaining what vegan means time and again. LOL.
Posted by Yoshi at 10/27/11 03:57:46mlp,
You might want to check out veganeatingout.com. I'm not sure if it's exactly what you're looking for, but it has a pretty extensive list of chain restaurants (it may even list some non-chain restaurants, but I can't remember) listing what is and what can be made vegan. It also posts copies of email responses from companies as far as the vegan status of their menu. Hope it helps.