Monday, 26 October 2015

Postcards From America: Spiral Diner Dallas

In my fourth ‘Postcard from America’, my travels took me to Texas where My Carnivorous Husband (MCH) and I stayed with friends for a few days.

My friend Marialaina, whom we were staying with, is a fellow vegetarian so I knew I’d be well catered for and she’d know all the right places for dining out.

True to that statement, during our stay we visited vegan diner called Spiral which is near to the trendy bohemian area of Bishops Arts District in Dallas.   Marialaina had been keen to go for quite a while and our visit was the catalyst to actually doing it and going.  I for one am never one to refuse a visit to somewhere new and I was also keen to have a wholly vegetarian dining experience USA style so I was totally up for it.
 
Photo:   M Bloomer


Spiral has a very retro feel to it, with a 1950’s canteen/diner style vibe, its style is very informal yet fun.  The walls are covered with interesting kitsch pictures and object d’art.   In addition, the restaurant is also a bakery and has a small shop area selling vegan products.   
From the Shop Area
Photo:  M Bloomer

The menu is 100% vegan with organic ingredients used where possible.  Their mission is to set prices enabling them to cover costs and to offer fair wages to their staff and if ingredients go down in price, so does the menu price.
From the Shop Area
Photo:  M Bloomer

The Server team were exceptionally knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the menu and everything was very tempting.   The fact that I could choose from the whole menu was sheer bliss!  To see the menu for yourself – view the link for items available http://www.spiraldiner.com/

Wanting to try something different if I could, I opted for a dish that was cutely labelled as ‘Bunny’ which in fact was Seitan with Steamed Vegetables.  Seitan is a type of protein, although new to me, it is available widely in the US.  In principle like tofu or Quorn products, it resembles beef in colour and possesses the texture of faux meats.  It was packed with flavour and served in thin slices over my vegetables. 

I really, really enjoyed it and I’m struggling to find anything like it in the UK although it has been suggested that ‘mock duck’ (which can be purchased at health food shops) is a fair alternative.

A big milkshake to go with it was a must (essential diner culture, whilst in America and all that - no more justification needed).  With it being so thick, it doubled up as dessert – loved it!

In a State that is so focused on Tex-Mex and steak in every which way you want, Spiral is a refreshing change for vegans, vegetarians and carnivores alike.   It is a really relaxed place and a good venue for meeting up with friends.   Proving its popularity, dining as we did at 6pm on a Saturday night, it was quite full with more patrons arriving as we were leaving so I guess meat-free food is more appealing to locals than might be perceived. 

Enjoyed by us, our friends and their friends who also joined us, the recommendation is if you’re down in Dallas, Spiral is perfect for some wholesome food and ideally based before/after visiting the Bishops Arts District.

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