CLOSED: VegiTerranean

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 29 reviews )



21 Furnace St (at The Northside Lofts 1st floor), Akron, Ohio, USA, 44308

Rock musician Chrissie Hynde's restaurant opened in Nov 2007. It's a coffee bar and bakery, lounge and restaurant all compactly designed with each phase having its own patio area, and with views of the valley below and the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad. Nice contemporary decor. Open daily, see website for hours. Reported closed to HappyCow.

Categories: Vegan, International, Italian, Organic, Beer/Wine

29 Reviews

First Review by jaxdeco

VegiTerranean is CLOSED - Edit

As of Sunday, October 2nd, 2011, this location has CLOSED. :(

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Super Fantastic! - Edit

A++++ service and great atmosphere! I've had many dishes here keeping it a goal of mine to try as many as I can. I've had nothing bad as of yet. Being vegan and not thinking much of Akron, this place is the bright spot in the area.

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looking forward to a return trip - Edit

my family stopped by akron while on a road trip, glad we went out of our way a bit to pick up a meal here. delicious. and very friendly, accommodating staff. place itself is very modern and according to the people coming in for dinner, it's a "special" spot in akron, everyone dressed nicely and seeming to be in groups coming for special occasions. i was happy to see vegan fare being taken so serious as a gourmet entity! (note that road-trip attire would've been fine there too, especially early evening.) looking forward to coming back one day to sample more of their menu.

Pros: food!, value , friendly staff

Cons: chrissie hynde photo overload

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Un-Freakin'-Believable - Edit

Just go there... seriously. Not cheap, but pretty fair. We had the Gyro pizza and the grilled veggie wrap. Both were divine. The Tirimasu (sp?) was one of the best desserts I've ever had... ever.

Pros: Food, Service, Food

Cons: None

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Awesome! - Edit

My favorite place to eat! All of the food is amazing!

Pros: Great food-all vegan

Cons: Some drinks contain honey, They use soap that is tested on animals

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Yummy, but definitely caters to meat-eaters. - Edit

I love this place! Everything on their menu is vegan, and it's all very tasty. Akron isn't really a vegan hotspot, so it's understandable that the food isn't your typical vegan fare. With that said, I do think more fresh, seasonal produce, whole grains, and dishes not based on faux meat would be wonderful. Also, everything is relatively pricey, but I think it's worth it.

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Delicious - Edit

We have been there twice and will be returning. Each time we go the food has been beyond excellent, hands down some of the best Vegan food I have ever had. No, it is not cheap but I think it is meant to be a special occasion restaurant - that is the point. No, it doesn't serve sunflower seeds or "traditional vegan fare" - I read an interview with Chrissie Hynde about the restaurant and I think her points are well taken - Akron is not bursting with Vegans - a hippy seeds and flax oil restaurant would never stay open there. This restaurant attracts lots of non vegans/non veggies who discover you can have a delicious, gourmet meal without meat. The place is packed - and that is amazing to have a restaurant full of people dining Vegan in Akron, Ohio. I don't care if the food vaguely resembles meat (because it is not meat and I don't believe encourages anyone to eat meat - it helps people recognize there are altenatives). Hands down it is an amazing restaurant.

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A great place for meat eaters... - Edit

...but not so much for vegans. Although the fare at this restaurant is tasty, there are (as of last time I ate there), almost no dishes that do not have fake meat. They also will not disclose the ingredients in foods prepared out of house, such as pizza crusts. One server told us that they had been mistakenly selling crusts with whey in it for quite a while.
All in all, I would recommend this place to friend who is not vegan and has money to burn. Although it is healthy and delicious food, it relies on replicating meat dishes, and not on traditional vegan fare.

Pros: Delicoius, Vegan

Cons: Very Expensive, Poor Service, All Fake Meat

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Worth a Journey - Edit

My wife and I were visiting the Akron area recently and dined at VegiTerranean. We were a little concerned about some of the reviews about this restaurant but decided to try it anyways - restaurants specializing in vegan fare are rare in the Midwest. Suffice it to say our concerns were completely unfounded. Our dining experience was not only outstanding, but well 'worth the journey'.

The dining area is minimalist/Italian/modern decor with pictures of celebrity vegans around the restaurant. Although we dined inside, there was comfortable seating outside on the patio. The table setting of modern silverware, dishware and cloth napkins are fitting for the restaurant's upscale style.

We started with the hot Italian banana peppers filled with fresh herb risotto and soy mozzarella, and fresh basil lime sauce. For our entrees, I selected the risotto with grilled artichokes and my wife chose the Italian fritto Gardein scallopini with Chrissie fries and braised greens with a sweet chili basil sauce. We ordered an extra side of wild mushrooms sauteed with sherry and fresh thyme.

The appetizers, entrees and sides were delicious and beautifully presented. The banana peppers were an excellent recommendation by our waitress. The artichoke risotto was bursting with flavor. We shared our entrees and my wife's scallopini was excellent. While we focus on whole foods, the Gardein scallopini with Chrissie fries was a great choice for a special occasion. We were served generous portions of everything; however, I did manage to find room for the flavorful wild mushroom side. Unable to eat another tasty morsel, we opted to buy a couple of their vegan desserts (carrot cake and a raspberry-filled chocolate cupcake) 'to go' which we enjoyed the following evening.

Our waitress was friendly, attentive and took time to explain the various dishes and chat with us despite the fact they were having a busy Friday night with a table of 20 people in the center of the dining room. We had a leisurely dinner with pefect timing of our food.

Price? While this is not your budget vegan restaurant, it is appropriately priced for the quality of food, service and atmosphere. Expect to spend $30-50 per person for dinner per person plus tip. We've had the opportunity to dine at vegan and vegetarian restaurants from Paris to Seattle and VegiTerranean is up there with the best of the best in fine vegan dining. We'll be back!

Pros: delicious food, fine dining, creative preparation

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Amazing ambiance and dessert - Edit

We dined at outdoors in the beautiful setting this past july (09'). The restaurant was packed, the service was outstanding. We found the presentation of the food to be amazing and the food itself was good. Our favorite part of the meal was the dessert. It was hands down the best vegan dessert we ever had. It was an apple pie al a mode. We highly recommend checking out the restaurant for the ambiance, dining experience and dessert!! As travelers in the Cleveland area it was very helpful to us to discover this place since there are not many other veggie options in this area.

Pros: Ambiance-fantastic, Dessert-delicious, Friendly staff

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cannot recommend - Edit

We have eaten there four times, and although we wanted to love it, we found the food to be overpriced, not very tasty and not well seasoned. The staff seemed commercial and not really very interested in the food, or the customers. Service was only fair, and they acted like they were doing you a favor to serve you. We are vegans and have eaten in many vegan restaurants in the US and abroad, and really, really wanted a restaurant that was vegan close by, that we could visit regularly. We gave it four chances, two dinners and two lunches, over the period of about one year, and was satisfied only once. Sorry, but despite the best intentions, this is a swing and a miss!

Pros: idea, physical facilities, parking

Cons: poor food, overpriced, waitstaff

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Divine - Edit

If we had this restaurant in Chicago I'd eat there 3-4 days per week. It was lovely and the service was warm. I'm going back tomorrow night. Had the best tomato basil soup I've had in ages, then followed with the wheat penne, with nut cream, asperagus, mushrooms and pine nuts. The cocktails were inventive, yet not over-the-top, and again, the wait staff was really friendly and helpful. Now in my top 10! I'll be making business trips to Akron more often. The music was even amazing!

Pros: diverse menu, presentation, staff

Cons: tea pot was tricky

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VegiTerranean is a big disappointment... - Edit

What a disappointment! We were so excited to hear there was a vegan restaurant close to us. We ate there twice, the food was good, not wonderful but adequate, very pricey, and the staff definitely needs some customer service training.. can we say rude? I called VegiTerranean and ordered a cheesecake last summer for my daugher's birthday only to find out at pick-up time that they had forgotten my order. Not only were they nasty with me (excuse me.. who forgot the order?? who is the customer??) but when they did manage to find a cheesecake in their cooler, they tried to charge me double the price quoted AND they tossed it in an old plastic container. What the heck was that about? Once again, where is the customer service? My daugher and her boyfriend made reservations (notice I said reservations....) for the Christmas holiday to eat only to find themselves squeezed at a table between the cash register and the copy machine, and once again, a less than pleasant waitress to serve them. Their food this night was mediocre at best. Needless to say, we will not be going back AND I intend to spread the word to my friends.... VegiTerranean... that is a check in the NO BOX for you folks.

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JohnnySensible 28 Dec 2008 - So VegiTerranean perhaps had a bad day - they have plenty of very good days also!


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wendyd 22 Feb 2013 - I agree with you completely. We went many times and gave them plenty of chances. I'll go back if I hear they've gotten their act together.  

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average - Edit

The place is very pretentiously decorated. Whatever, it is rock-n-roll, or so I thought. Being the child of a "rock star", i expected much more rock and a lot less pop. They play it loud and proud as if it were rock, though. Anyway...

The food starts with bread and a black bean hummus, both were very nice. The tea I ordered was just ok, but at least it was only $2, not like other places that rip you off for a tea bag. The dinner was supposed to be "Fresh, wild mushrooms" and I asked if that meant Chanterelle and maitake, the reply was YES. I got portobello that did not taste, look or smell fresh, even after they were cooked. The yellow heirloom tomato sauce was delicious. But I would have tried something else had I known what the mushrooms were, and, after all, I did ask.

The dessert was more than ample and very tasty.

The staff was a little standoffish... did not really want to talk though the cafe was empty. Talk about the menu, I mean, not the weather.

Would try again perhaps, but they need to understand that portabellos come from farms, what I had was NOT wild. Felt wronged, but had to get on the road again...

Pros: cake

Cons: misleading menu, mushrooms, decor & music

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So disappointing - Edit

I have given this restaurant 8 chances and I won't be back. I REALLY wanted to love it. I mean, how great is it to have a vegan restaurant in Akron? But they are doing so many things that are wrong and I've had it.

The service is terrible. The main course arrives when we're in the middle of our salad every time, and they just kind of shove it on the table - ready or not!

The wine is too warm when it is served - I don't know where they are storing it - in a greenhouse, maybe? Once, it was so warm that it made the glasses hot. It tasted like we were drinking hot mulled cider. We sent it back, and didn't get our other bottle until our meal was done.

I'm tired of getting seated for dinner in the caffe with the uncomfortable aluminum chairs. They are uncomfortable, and it feels like you are in a cheap coffee shop.

A lot of the food is really good, but some of it is pretty bad. My husband ordered risotto tonight and it was the worst risotto we've ever tasted in a restaurant.

It's just too expensive to be making this many mistakes. I'm really sad, because I really wanted to love it. It's such a beautiful space! It is prettier than any of the vegetarian restaurants in NYC. But it's terrible - that's right, I said it, TERRIBLE. Not worth what they are charging, no way, no how.

Pros: Pretty space, Fills a vegetarian void in NE Ohio

Cons: bad service, warm wine, uneven quality of food

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Hidden gem - Edit

Who would have imagined that Akron would be such a haven for this glorious vegan restaurant? All shiny and modern, the decor is lovely and contributes to a very hip atmosphere. The service is very friendly. The seating is very nice, if you can sit outside and eat good food with friends, highly advised! The menu is Mediterranean, but seemed mostly Italian to me. The "chiken" is very good, so good, that I would order "chiken parmigiana" if they had it! The pasta is very tasty. However, be wary of the cream sauces, they are not for the fat-conscious, as they are definitely living up to their names! The fries are an interesting representation, with tofu aioli and homemade "ketchup." MUCH more flavorful than regular ketchup! I would recommend the fries because of the garnishings! The polenta was a bit gummy, but nice job with the grilled vegetables. The portions are generous, and will fill any stomach. Great assortment, sure to have something yummy for everyone! The desserts were lovely, the tiramisu was very rich though, but tasty! One word of advice: don't expect the cookies to be as amazing as the rest of the food or baked goods! Opt for the cakes or pies instead of the cookies! One more thing, beware of parking, depending on when you go, it may be hard to find! Overall, a good experience and would definitely go back if I were in Akron!

Pros: Chiken, Dessert, Creme sauce

Cons: Cookies, Parking

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Even Celebrities Can Learn from Early Mistakes - Edit

My veg restaurant experience goes back to earthy places like Mark's (Ann Arbor, 1971), Hanna's New Age Foods & Carnival Cafe (my fave) both in Boulder in 1970s and Celestial Seasonings employee cafeteria (when it was veg in 70s). These days I like Govinda's and Watercourse, both in Denver. But VegiTerranean was anything but earthy. It was Hollywood in Deadwood, ie a bit too trendy for Akron, Ohio and also off the mark for my veg values. On the other hand, it seems to have a sincere mission.

I was the very first customer to be seated at VegiTerranean on the Friday in November, 2007 when it opened. I also attended the September rally to photograph Chrissie Hynde serving free food and entertaining. I feel very strongly that she would like to beat up the world's meat-packing butchers and I don't blame her.

Having grown up in Akron and being acutely aware of its deepening poverty, I found the style and new condo location of VegiTerranean to be aloof and unaware of its environment. Most Akronites cannot afford to eat out, much less eat at VegiTerranean, which comes off as a ritzy chrome bar looking over a valley of subsidized housing developments in my rust-belt hometown. The prices were also formal. I spent $25 plus tip and went home to raid the fridge, absolutely starved. The soldier-like waiters, all wearing black, looked like a mafia funeral. On the other hand, I chatted with head chef Dan Duplain who I found to be very likeable.

In all fairness, judging by the free samples at the previous open event, the food is great. But my meal looked like a Jackson Pollack piece and tasted like a bland swamp of soybean oil. The theme is supposed to be Mediterranean but I detected not one hint of olive oil, not a grain of garlic, no basil, oregano, peppers, no Italian ingredients in the least. I longed for my long dead Aunt Concetta from Alia, Sicily who was in fact the very finest Sicilian cook in all of Akron, circa 1960s... on North Hill just across the valley. I can't remember what I had at VegiTerranean. But just about everything on the menu was "chicken" this and chicken that, analog of course, apparently seitan. I think it's a big mistake for any veg restaurant to make mock meats so predominant on the menu. Hey, I eat Tofurkey on the sly but I don't like the name Tofurkey because it celebrates bird-o-cide.

I was quite shocked to discover that chef Duplain owns a meat restaurant and two of the other four chefs are meat eaters (according to 1).

Pros: good first try biz, great city view, edible

Cons: overpriced, micro-portions, yuppified

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Amazing to find a restaurant like this in Akron - Edit

A thousand thank you's to Chrissie Hynde for remembering her home town and establishing this restaurant in a rust belt city such as Akron. It's so wonderful to have somewhere to go to dinner and not have to worry about what's in the food! And what great food it is. Anyone who dares say that vegetarian food is bland need only try this place.

The wonderful airy atmosphere when the bar window is open is great, too. I wish only that they hadn't designed it with such "cold" decor...metal and cement, and very uncomfortable chairs. Oh well, you can't ask for EVERYTHING!

Pros: Great food, Only vegan dishes served

Cons: The decor is quite cold & uncomfortable

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Wonderfully Delicious - Edit

How great is it to be able to go into a restaurant as a vegan and not have to worry about anythng? I thoroughly enjoyed my entire dining experience there from fantastic martinis, appetizers, main courses through deserts.

When I got home (Rocky River) I decided I wanted to share the experience with a friend and called to see if I could purchase a gift certificate over the telephone. I was told that they'd never done that before, so I thanked them and hung up. A few minutes later the manager called me back (by looking at caller ID because I didn't even leave my name or number) and said he would be happy to send a gift certificate through the mail. I received it two days later.

I'm returning for another awesome dining experience next week and can't wait. The food is as I said "wonderfully delicious" and the servers are fantastic.

Pros: excellent food, totally vegan, very healthy

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Simply Amazing! - Edit

Talk about an oasis, an odd location in a heavy meat-eatin' town for one of the best vegan eateries in the U.S.

I'm hard-pressed to think of a better vegan experience than eating at VegiTerranean. The food is astoundingly good, the servers are wonderful, the wine, the desserts, the appetizers, it's all scrumptious!

If you're ever within even 100 miles of Akron, make the detour, it's that good.

Pros: EVERYTHING ON THE MENU!, Desserts, Appetizers

Cons: A bit pricey, Website is terrible and has wrong hours, Wish there were more of them!

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Finally! - Edit

Thank you VegiTerranean for bringing wonderful food and a wonderful atmosphere to Akron, OH! My entire family, none of whom are vegans, LOVED everything! My dad, a self-proclaimed carnivore, loved the rissotto, my brother couldn't believe my chicken picatta was faux, he swore it was something I couldn't eat! I've been there a few times, and dinner is way fancier and has larger portions than lunch. I highly reccomend the artichoke appetizer! Servers have always been super friendly and accomodating. I'd be sure to make a reservation if you're planning on visiting, because they can get pretty busy and the firt time I went we didn't have one and it took about 45 min to get seated for lunch.
They are very friendly towards people with food allergies also, they have many wheat-free alternatives & ofcourse use no dairy or eggs. I'm definitely always going to plan a night here when I visit home.

Pros: fabulous food, very friendly & attentive staff, did I mention fabulous food?

Cons: make a reservation

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SOOOO....... DELICIOUS!! - Edit

What a great place with a fab menu!!! I have visited 4 times and loved every bite!! The Rockin' burger is my favorite thing so far.

Pros: Menu, Quality of Food, Location

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Too much meat at a vegetarian restaurant - Edit

I'm curious about fake meat, and I like it, but at a vegetarian restaurant, I would expect that at least one entree out of five would not feature fake meat.

Are they saying that they're really just trying to recreate a carnivore experience? That in order to merit entree status (the highlight of a menu), a dish needs to contain meat? Try adding a stir-firy, or feature root vegetables somehow. I went for a fake-meat-less pasta dish that was good.

Having said that, the fake meat dishes I tried were all very good.

The carrot cake did not taste like carrots at all; it tasted like spice cake (boo). But the key lime napolean was excellent.

Atmosphere very hip, service was good.

I'll admit my prejudice toward vegan food--unmerited enthusiasm. Sometimes politics and evangelism cloud the palette. VegiTerranean overcomes that, and delivers great tasting food.

Pros: atmosphere, key lime napolean, vegan food that actually tastes good

Cons: No entrees without fake meat, Carrot cake doesn't taste like carrots

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Vegiterranean Rocks! - Edit

I've eaten there 4 times so far and each meal has been incredible. They have a drink called "espresso martini" which is SO GOOD! But make sure they haven't run out of kahlua. One time they tried to substitute the kahlua with something else and the drink wasn't nearly as good.

The eggplant ravioli is my favorite entree. Key lime dessert is another favorite. And the french fries are addictive.

Only complaint is with the manager who twice asked us to move to the bar 90 minutes into our reservation. One time this was requested with a phone call the day prior to our dinner. I've never experienced anything like this, especially at an upscale restaurant. The request was not made very tactfully either.

We explained what happened to the chef and he promised to make sure this doesn't happen again. The chef is wonderful - always comes out to ask how we liked the meal and is very friendly. The servers are super friendly and down-to-earth as well.

I've been telling everyone about how amazing this restaurant is. Best place ever to bring meat-eating friends. I suspect a lot of the people there may not even be aware the food is all vegan.

Pros: amazing food, it's vegan!, friendly servers

Cons: rude manager

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yummy - Edit

food and service were excellent. though, it was a little crowded and loud during lunch. my decidedly not vegan parents couldn't even tell that they weren't eating real chicken.

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Birthday Surprise! - Edit

My husband took me to VegiTerranean last Saturday for my birthday. I was impressed with the minimalist decor, I particularly liked the neon lighting on the edge of the bar that periodically changed color. The wait staff was all attired in black, which went nicely with the restaurant's moderne look. We started with a glass of wine for him and a Vodka martini for me. Both were very good. We shared an appetizer of risotto stuffed hot banana peppers. Our waiter warned us that the peppers were a hot 11 on a scale of 1-10 and he was right. Hubbie loved them. I found the pepper a little too hot for me, but the risotto was wonderful. For out main course I had the steak marsala which was was excellent. The marsala sauce was full of plump mushrooms and had a wonderful texture and flavor. It was served with olive oil mashed potatoes and braised greens. Both were wonderful. Hubbie had a the filet mignon which was served with white bean mashed potatoes and braised greens. It came to our table topped with a lighted rosemary sprig, which was a nice touch. From the speed at which he ate it , I can only assume it it was out of this world. We finished by sharing a piece of cheesecake that came with raspberry sauce, whipped cream and fresh fruit. It too, did not disappoint. Neither of us are strict vegetarian and this meal was one of the best dining out experiences we have had recently. The only problem we had all evening was that the restaurant does not automatically offer glasses of water at every table,and we had to ask for some. Other than that, our waiter was very attentive and knowledgeable. Since we live in the Akron area we hope to return.

Pros: excellent food, healthy cusine, decor

Cons: need to ask for water

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Stig 14 Dec 2007 - Your Review is a pleasure to read! Please write many more!


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  Contributions +28

awesome food - pretentious door staff - Edit

There is no way to not respect an all vegan place, and the food is completely outstanding in every way. It's expensive, but really excellent. I am scared of things that look like meat, but the fake chicken was still good. The salads, the desserts, the apps, the entrees, the pasta - there is no weakness. It is worth putting up with the attitude. We went on a Saturday night, no line at the door, 5 empty tables, and were told we had to have reservation to get one - with a tone full of attitude like we didn't deserve to be there. We sat at the bar, which was filled with folks eating dinner. One guy even asked to see the reservation book, wondering why we were all eating at the bar. The bartenders were awesome and the meal was perfect - great service. But oddly, we were there 1.5 hours, and those tables never filled, and when we left there were 6 empty tables. I think vegetarians are less into attitude than the steak crowd, but I suppose time will tell. If they made it more comfy and had friendly people at the door it would be awesome.

Pros: awesome food, good food, in Akron, 100% vegan

Cons: pretentious attitude, uncomfortable seats, black and steel decor

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smitten with mittens 22 Feb 2013 - I have worked at VegiTerranean since it opened - as far as the empty tables go, I am assuming the reason why they were empty and the host was seating people for dinner at the bar was probably because the empty tables were reserved. We don't have "reserved" signs for individual tables, and usually we allow people to sit at reserved tables provided that there is adequate time to clean and reset them before the parties who reserved them show up. Occasionally some parties are no shows, so while it may seem that the host was simply being pretentious and refusing to seat anyone at an empty table, it may very well have remained empty due to a no show or cancelled reservation.  

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