News

Taj Grill: Wednesday is for vegans & vegetarians #vrcns

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

Vegan entrees change daily at the Taj Grill lunch buffet. Photo: Tammy Lee

Taj Grill is a leader in Vallejo’s restaurants for vegan dining.  While it’s not a vegan restaurant, they are well-known in the local vegan community as they already clearly mark which items on their menu are “VEGAN” or “with vegan option”, and their daily lunch buffet includes vegan selections (signed as vegan).

We spoke to the owner Harish Chowdhary as part of our Vegan Restaurant Campaign, he confirmed:

  • All of their “vegan dishes” are 100% plant-based, no animal products whatsoever
  • Fried ingredients in vegan dishes are cooked in oil used only for vegan items
  • Their Wednesday lunch buffet is entirely vegan/vegetarian

So what’s vegan at Taj Grill?  For starters, their menu lists 12 entrees as vegan (Mixed Vegetables, Tarka Dal, Aloo Gobi, Aloo Chole, Aloo Methi, Jeera Aloo, Aloo Palak, Saag Channa, Channa Masala, Pindi Channa, Baingan Bhartha, Bhindi Masala), and the 13th “with vegan option”, the Dal Makhni.  Harish mentioned several of their breads are vegan, as are their pakoras.  Other appetizers, like the samosa, are likely vegan, but have not yet been marked on their menu.

But what’s really notable about the vegan dining options at Taj Grill is their daily lunch buffet.  Earlier this year, Harish made Wednesday’s buffet entirely plant-based (i.e. it is a mixture of vegan and vegetarian selections).   The buffet features 13 items, all you can eat for $9.99.  In the past, savvy vegans relied on Harish to point out to them which entrees are vegan.   At our request, each vegan dish on the buffet will now be signed with a “V”.

Taj Grill Daily Lunch Buffet, 11 am to 2:30 pm: All You Can Eat $9.99

  • 8 Entrees daily, described as 4 “dry” entrees and 4 curries
    • Wednesday, between 6 and 8 entrees are typically vegan, remaining are vegetarian.
    • All other days, it’s split between vegan/vegetarian and non-vegan/vegetarian.  It is typically 3 vegan, 1 vegetarian or all 4 vegan.
  • Rice (vegan)
  • Bread (usually vegan)
  • Pakoras (vegan)
  • Salad, with 2 salad dressings (vegan)
  • Pudding (vegetarian, not vegan)

Harish  mentioned the possibility of having a vegan dessert option in the future.

We’d love to see the vegan/vegetarian theme on Wednesday carry forward to additional days of the week.  Please check ’em out.

Taj Grill, 758 Admiral Callaghan Ln , Vallejo 94591, (707) 644-4902 (by Safeway)

After you’ve dined there, please add your review of them to TAJ GRILL in the Ultimate Guide, and these hashtags elsewhere in the Internet!

#tajgrillvegan #vrcns #VallejoVeganRestaurantCampaign
#EatVeganVallejo #NapaSolanoVegans #WhatVegansEat #baveg

 

Cooking Vegan in a non-Vegan Kitchen #vrcns

Thursday, February 22nd, 2018

We dine out for a variety of reasons, the primary ones being hunger and convenience.  For me, enjoying a dining experience at a mixed restaurant serving both vegan and non-vegan foods means trusting that my vegan meal was prepared without contact with animal-based foods. Regardless of whether the underlying reason may be ethical concerns, food safety & handling practices, or health concerns, there are California state laws regarding food handling to avoid allergens.

For the many of us who have never worked in a restaurant kitchen and are unfamiliar with how it’s run, I’ve summarized a conversation I had with Anthony Jackson, a chef as well as a vegan who worked at a Vallejo restaurant handling both vegan and non-vegan foods:

Read the rest of this entry »

Vegan Kids Event

Wednesday, February 21st, 2018

We’ve been polling our members in the Napa Solano Vegans group on Facebook and whether there’s interest for a special event for families & kids, which would provide kids with a unique opportunity to socialize with their peers at an all-vegan event.

With April approaching, a (vegan) egg hunt has been proposed.   We’d like your interest and availability for an egg hunt vs an outdoor park event, with date considerations as follows

  1. Outdoor kids event, Sat Apr 14
  2. Outdoor kids event, Sat Apr 7
  3. Egg hunt, Sat Mar 31

If you’re a member of our Facebook group, Napa Solano Vegans, please vote in the poll to make it easy to record your preference.   If you’re not a Facebook user, you may leave a comment below with your preference or email us directly.

If you’d like to share your kid(s) ages and city, that’d be great to help us plan event logistics.  We also welcome your help with the organizing and implementation (and/or hosting) of this event.

Vegan Restaurant Campaign #vrcns

Saturday, February 17th, 2018

There are so many of us who have been working in various ways to promote veganism and vegan foods locally.   Yet, there is not a single vegan restaurant in the entire Napa and Solano county; many of us regularly drive 30 to 60 minutes plus to dine at a vegan restaurant.  Collaborating together will magnify our individual efforts, and hopefully, one day, we’ll have a vegan restaurant.

Some may ask, why do we want to dine at an all-vegan restaurant when there are nearby restaurants with vegan choices?

  1. A vegan or entirely plant-based restaurant can be a better dining experience
    1. Provides a a larger selection to choose from, versus the single vegan item available, or choosing an item and having to order it without meat/dairy
    2. There’s no risk of allergen contamination from non-vegan foods
    3. There’s no cues (visual or aromatic) of animal flesh or animal products
  2. Our dining dollars are not supporting an establishment that profits from the suffering & slaughter of sentient beings

Yet, given the lack of vegetarian restaurants in the county, or even a smaller endeavors like food trucks, it’s a big move for a vegan restaurant to open.

To lay the groundwork for a vegan restaurant to open, we need to create a business climate where vegan foods are seen as profitable.  Once we demonstrate that there IS a demand for vegan foods, then someone will eventually exploit that opportunity and open an all-vegan restaurant. (We’re already seeing that explosion with prepared foods.  Ben & Jerry’s now has 9 vegan flavors, Haagen Daz and Breyers have vegan flavors too.)

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Ultimate Guide to Napa & Solano County #vrcns

Wednesday, February 14th, 2018

The intent of the Ultimate Guide is to make it easier for folks new to the Bay Area or new to veganism to find businesses that support their lifestyle. We welcome your reviews and feedback on businesses and services listed within.

We are in progress of updating the Guide to include North Bay restaurants that are mixed (i.e. they offer both vegan and non-vegan selections).  We recognize that an entirely vegan restaurant is the preference for many, but until that time comes, we need to identify and support the ones that are offering vegan choices.

If you know of a  restaurant offering vegan selections, or a vegan-owned business (of any type) that should be included, you are welcome to add it.

 

Read the rest of this entry »

Spring 2018 College Outreach

Monday, February 12th, 2018

STAND UP FOR ANIMALS
Upcoming volunteer events at local colleges to raise awareness of how animals are treated and promote veganism.

2/14/2018 – Wed – Napa Valley college (Napa)

2/20/2018 – Tue – Diablo Valley College (Pleasant Hill)
2/26/2018 – Mon – Napa Valley college (Napa)
2/28/2018 – Wed – Solano Community College (Fairfield)

3/07/2018 – Wed – Diablo Valley College (Pleasant Hill)
3/12/2018 – Mon – Napa Valley college (Napa)
3/14/2018 – Wed – Solano Community College (Fairfield)

 

 

We typically start at DVC (Pleasant Hill) at 7:30 am, and at SCC (Fairfield) and NVC (Napa) at 8:45 am, and leaflet until 11:15 – 11:30ish, depending on how the student traffic is.

You’re welcome to join for all or part of it the time!  Please email us and let us know so we can plan accordingly for outreach materials.

Knowledge Needed:  Familiarity with veganism for the occasional question

Experience Needed:  Ability to smile, & hold out your arm while holding a booklet

As easy as smiling and holding out leaflet

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