Here’s where I make a few suggestions of local places I like. I’ll be including a veg scale of 1 to 5, which works thusly: One indicates that they think fish is a vegetable, Five indicates that not only do they have Vegan food but they know what a Fruitarian is. Ratings are by memory, so your mileage may vary.
Maharaja is an Indian Restaurant. I haven’t been to the one on the East side but have heard it is just as good as the one on the West side. I’ve never heard negative comments about it’s service or food . Veg Scale somewhere around 4 or 5. I’m definitely willing to make the one mile walk….
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New Orleans Take Out is where Blues and Jazz folks from The Big Easy go to get that down home flavor… or something. It’s kind of out of the way, but worth it. I haven’t been since they remodeled as the one by the college is closer to me… seating may be limited. However the name implies take out because they do encourage that option. This is where I go to get Shrimp Po’ Boys when I’m too lazy to make my own. If you go on Saturday I’d advise skipping the, “To hot to eat shrimp etouffee.” It’s tear inducing hot, but doesn’t have the flavor to make it worth the tears. I can’t remember if they even have veggie dishes so…. Veg Scale 1 or 2.
David’s Jamaican is one of my favorite places. It’s a family business that has flourished in a place Taco Bell failed. Occasionally I will eat there every week for a month or so. The service can range from mediocre to bad depending on which family member is working. Takeout is the strongly recommended way to purchase food. I also don’t recommend the buffet, get them to cook real food. Their menu items are going to be more than any except the fattest person can eat, and even for me I’m quite full afterwards. So you won’t be missing on value by skipping the buffet. For Veg(an) folks I recommend the Jerk Tofu or Pineapple Tofu. Both of which I’ve had, and enjoyed. Veg scale of 3.
Monty’s Blue Plate Diner is diner food, that’s at least a step above your various diner chains. This is a good place for everyone as it has diner staples like burgers and meatloaf, but plenty of Veggie options too. They also have specials everyday, which includes veggie specials. Their shakes are insane…likely enough for two… real ice cream. It’s a bit small and if you’re fairly fat you want to sit at the tables not the booths to spare yourself some embarrassment. Also if you come at normal times expect a half hour or longer wait. It’s really popular. My good friends got a shit-ton of free veggie books from the head chef… she know’s whats going on. The Veg options are creative and good, don’t let the “diner” word scare you off. Veg Scale of 5.
Glass Nickel is one of my favorite pizza places. New Yorkers might look down their nose at it, but normal people should like it just fine. They have quite an assortment of strange pizzas, so mix in some normal stuff just in case. I love the Cheesasaurus. They also deliver to the hotel… in their grease running hippy cars. Their menu mentions that their sauce is Vegan, and they chop their Veggies in a separate room. Plus they have a gluten free crust you can order. Veg Scale of 4 to 5.
is the best Mexican food in Madison. In clyde-speak this is refered to as “The Pink Place,” because they painted the front pink to stand out from the blah white buildings. They have Tacos, Tortas, Sopes, Gorditas, Huaraches, Beef, Chicken, Beef Tongue, Chorizo…. Their chicken chimicangas are the closet thing I’ve found to a San Diego burrito in the midwest. It’s a great place if you aren’t Veg(an.) If you are they have a vegetarian burrito, but I’ve never tried it. Veg Scale 1 or 2.
Taqueria Guadalajara burnt down. Hopefully they’re back by next year.
Buraka is Ethiopian food. Lot’s of stew, plus Injera bread to help stick it in your face. The heat is tuned down for the white people, but there are Ethiopian style hot sauces available. It’s a neat little restaurant. You have to go down some stairs into the basement. You’ll be okay, it’s not scary. I usually get the Dorowot. It’s kind of like Beef Stew, but better. They have a couple Veggie items… can’t remember if it’s Vegan so Veg Scale of 3.
Fugu: Asian Fusion has a colon in the title, like some of your favorite roleplaying games. It’s a neat idea. It’s like a 2 menu Chinese restaurant, but the second menu isn’t hidden. If you want the things you may think of as Chinese food just order off the American menu. The second menu items are more fusion than authentic? I don’t have the knowledge to know for certain, but I suspect that’s how it works. Their menu size is crazy, and they have all the stuffs, including things like; Tripe, Tongue, Duck, etc.
Everything I’ve tried has been good. Even the American menu stuff is better grade of food than your standard Chinese restaurant. If you suspect you may be white, consider carefully anything that has the chile pepper symbol. It’s likely not for you. Triple Pepper is certainly not for you.
It has a reasonable number of Veggie entres, so Vegscale of 3 to 4.
The hotel is sadly outside of their delivery range… maybe if you have a really big order?