JD Wetherspoons - Vegan Option?

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

I went for a meal with my boss the other day. We had been in Norwich sorting some things out and decided that it was time to grab something to eat. We called into a Wetherspoons and looked over the menu. As it was the 1st of the month, I thought it was probably wise to look for a vegan option, this is not an easy task with the menu for this large pub chain. Aside from a side salad there were 2 vegan options and both required a special alteration to the meal.

The first was a tomato soup which needed to be ordered without bread. Just a bowl of soup. Surely there could be a dairy free bread option? I was really surprised by this. The other option was the one that I went for. It was a Chickpea, sweet potato and spinach curry served with yellow basmati rice and poppadoms (naan bread is replaced with extra poppadoms to make the meal vegan) with a small tub of mango chutney. It sounded nice enough so I ordered one.

When it arrived, it looked like it had been sitting around for a while. It had a slight "skin" on the top of the curry sauce and the rice was a bit cold. The poppadoms were stale and slightly chewy - not good because I had 4 to get through. The chickpeas were overcooked and chewy and the curry sauce was vaguely spiced but pretty bland. The tiny pot of chutney wasn't really worth bothering with either. There certainly wasn't enough for 4 poppadoms! I was really disappointed. As the only proper vegan meal on the menu it was really poor.

One of the more popular vegetarian options on the menu is a 5 bean chilli which I considered ordering. The problem is that it contains Quorn mince which isn't vegan friendly. Surely this is a pretty unnecessary addition to a dish that is already crammed with beans. It doesn't quite make sense to me really. There should be more options available in such a large chain of restaurants.

I was pretty appalled by the lack of choice and the poor quality of the food. I'm not sure that it would be too difficult to have a vegan chilli (even if ordered without sour cream on top etc.) made with beans and vegetables rather than Quorn just so that there is more choice available to those who eat a different diet from what is considered the norm.

Low scores for Wetherspoons.


Midori 4 February 2010 at 11:03  

I'm rather perplexed that accoridng to their 'Nitty Gritty' guide all their jacket potatoes contain egg!

Linds 4 February 2010 at 15:09  

I've heard all kinds of things about their jacket potatoes. I used to go to Slimming World and was told that they're not to be counted as free food because of the way they are cooked. I heard they were injected with butter but I'm not sure how accurate that is.

Egg though...that's bizarre.

John,  12 February 2010 at 20:12  

I suppose an egg wash on the skin would crisp it up. Wetherspoons vary from place to place and depending on who is in the kitchen at that time. I've had a dried up cold veggie xmas dinner but i've also had that chickpea curry and loved it. It's a bit pot luck and not all places will bother asking you if your meal is okay. I haven't had any probs with our local branch that's just opened in Chippenham. Thumbs up to you guys.

Mitzi Bagpuss 23 October 2012 at 22:14  

It's definitely pot luck as to the quality of the food in Spoons, but I really loved the sweet potato curry. We have started a group on fb you may be interested in https://www.facebook.com/VeganSpoons?ref=ts&fref=ts, please help us by liking it.

I don't think the potatoes have egg in, they are listed as vegan on their website, but are tiny and only a main meal if you are on a very low calorie diet.

Potatoes aren't on the free veggie list in Slimming World, because potatoes are naturally high in carbohydrates, but not too high in a controlled diet, so without butter, they are a good option for a diet.

Mitzi Bagpuss 23 October 2012 at 22:16  

To clarify my link, it's for a page on fb called Wetherspoons Customers for a Vegan Option

RawFoodEnergy 25 September 2016 at 20:47  

Could do better but a low class place with little regard to customers in general. Expected rubbish

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