Saturday, August 13, 2011

A Vegetarian Goes on The Road, Part III: Convention Eating & St. Louis Restaurant Spotlight

Some of the Many Vegetarian Options available at ASAE 2011
The first part of my two weeks of epic travel was four days in St. Louis for my professional association's annual convention.  I have to give props to ASAE for providing terrific vegetarian options at every function.  Not only did fresh fruits and veggies abound, but there were entire stations in the exhibit hall that were purely vegetarian, and all of the seated meal functions had filling, veg options.  Additionally, at almost every event, meals were clearly labeled as vegetarian and clearly spelled out lists of ingredients.  It was great to be able to concentrate on business and networking and not worry so much about what I was going to eat.

Roasted Beet Salad from Lucas Park Grille
Since there were so many events at the conference, I only ate a sit down dinner at one restaurant, but it was a treat!  A group of fifteen colleagues and I came together for a reunion dinner at the Lucas Park Grille.  One of the vegetarian offerings was "Match Meatballs."  I was pretty sure Match had soy in it, but I decided to check with our server to be sure.  Normally, when I ask this type of question, the server runs back to the kitchen to check with the chef.  However, our server not only knew right away what the ingredients were, but was able to run through the menu to share which dishes were vegetarian or could be made vegan.  I was impressed at her preparedness. 

For my meal, I opted for the roasted beet & goat cheese salad, followed by a vegetarian risotto, which included mushrooms and frizzled leeks.  Both were delicious!  A variety of salads and sides are also veg friendly.

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