Running errands, in North Shore, I was looking for a place to eat in that area. I didn’t have any particular place in mind, so I just looked at what I thought I might want to try. I saw “Bone Appétit” and thought that sounded interesting, but as my old eyes got closer, I saw a picture of a dog bone and realized that it was a pet bakery. I was hungry and wanted to try something new, but I just didn’t think that was what I had in mind.
Then I journeyed onto Cherokee Boulevard and saw something interesting - “Sluggo’s”. The name alone was different, but underneath that was “Vegetarian Café”. I like healthy foods, though I am not a vegetarian or whatever they are calling themselves these days, so I decided to try this place. Curb parking was available, but I had to park a block down from the place. It was a nice day and I didn’t mind the walk.
There was no hostess or greeter so I went up to the counter, and the gentleman I approached gave me a menu and instructed me to take any seat I’d like and come back up to the counter to order when I was ready. Easy enough. When I looked at the menu, I noticed many items had tofu. I have had tofu in a Chinese soup before and it isn’t bad, but I was not in the mood for that; nor did the to-furkey appeal to me much.
I started to play it safe and go with a salad or maybe a veggie wrap but I felt a little more adventurous than that! I went to the counter and placed my order with a nice man named Ozzie…or at least I think that was his name…that is what it said on his fingers. I couldn’t read what it said on his other hand but I am sure that it was his last name.
“I’ll have the Mushroom Walnut Burger,” I told him. I couldn’t go wrong with that- it didn’t have “to-” in front of it. I didn’t order a side dish. I did not see much on the menu for sides - pasta, collards, lentil soup and potatoes was all I saw. I ordered a bottle of Perrier and Ozzy slid a bottle in front of me. No glass. Did he expect me to drink from that bottle? I asked for a glass.
I sat down with my chilled glass and Perrier and noticed the people around me. A yuppie couple speaking intelligently to each other over lunch, a young girl who rode in on her bicycle, and a young man dressed for business eating alone, but talking into the air as his ear piece picked up his conversation. The place was very clean – even the ceiling fans. That impressed me. The tables were immaculate (you don’t always get that in restaurants).
Ozzy brought my order to me and what a burger! I was not sure that my mouth would fit to bite into it! The bun was made from wheat and it was warm and soft. I could see sesame seeds and grains on it. The burger was made from the mushroom and the walnuts that I supposed they mashed together to form a “patty” and then they grilled it. There was beautiful dark-leaf lettuce, fresh Roma tomato slices and red onion on the burger.
It really was delicious! In no way, did I feel that I had to yell, “Wh-e-r-e’s the beef?!”
I can see how vegetarians can do without meat when they can come up with things like this! With the fresh, melt in your mouth bun and the delightful burger; I didn’t expect to have a soggy jarred-pickle on the side of my plate. I expected for them to have their own pickles or a fresh asparagus spear to adorn the plate, but it was plain to see this was a sloppy, flat pickle from a jar. I left it alone; I didn’t need to try that.
There was a sauce on the side for dipping or to put on top of my mushroom burger. I tried a bit of it, but it tasted like Thousand Island and I am not fond of that – if you like that dressing, you will love this together. The burger with the fresh veggies and soft bun was so moist it really didn’t need a sauce!
I saw a shelf over by the fountain drink station full of board games…Battleship, Operation and Scrabble. Must be for kids to play when parents go there. I had a feeling that this was a “happening place” in the evenings.
On their menu, they advertise “movie night” downstairs on Sunday nights with vegan pizza pies. Sluggo’s was a good choice and I am glad I went. I could see going back to try something that they had listed in many dishes called “seitan”. My meal with the water cost $8.47 and I felt it was a good price. There was seating outside too. I found this place and the food (aside from that pickle) to be a good experience and I would tell others to try it.