The popularity of vegetarian restaurants is becoming more widespread as the planets sustainability, environmental protection and issues of our general wellbeing become more and more important to individuals in their everyday life. We are constantly reading reports and findings that urge the public to have at least one meat-free day per week for these reasons. Though in the past decade, Australia has seen a huge growth in awareness in these issues particularly in the food, beverage and retail industries, first with the introduction of organic foods and subsequently biodynamic agriculture. As well as these somewhat recent developments the vegetarian and vegan movements have not only pressed on to become a trend but also a reaction in responding not just to animal cruelty but more so as a desperate cry to ease climate change and conserve our planet. Subsequently, vegetarian cuisine has become a ‘craze’, developing past lentils and falafel and is now the focus for many restaurants. So I decided to see what all the fuss was about and treat myself to a night out with some vegetables.
To satisfy my curiosit, my friend suggested we check out the offerings at Global Vegetarian; a local no-frills restaurant, dishing out hearty and comforting meals to ‘in-the-know’ locals every night of the week. On entering the quaint restaurant we are greeted with simple wooden tables and chairs, laminated menus and a seat-yourself service, which is the straightforward and relaxed nature of the establishment. The setting is casual and unfussy which conjures the familiar sentiment of a home cooked meal with family and friends.
I must admit I did have my doubts as to whether anything on offer could really excite me without the presence of meat. However, just browsing the menu put my usual indecisiveness into action as I soon found myself salivating just over the descriptions. After much agonising, my cashew nut stir-fry arrives in impressive time, steaming and oozing a gloriously nutty aroma.
The array of vegetables including broccoli, cauliflower, potatoes, bean shoots, green beans and bok choy is mixed with tofu and cashew nuts on a bed of rice; all of which is nearly spilling over the side of the already large plate. The vegetables crunch delightfully with every mouthful and the sauce is a mouth-watering blend of soy and hoisin with the light, sticky rice resting underneath, absorbing up all the lovely juice. At this point, I am literally able to feel how healthy the meal is each time I lift the fork to my mouth.
Though how lovely my cashew-ed bowl of goodness was I did have one slight distraction whilst devouring my main. A glass case is opposite me, inside a selection of desserts stare temptingly at me begging to be demolished. After so much deliberation, the mango cheesecake had to be it and with such a short season ahead of us how can you go past anything with mango in it? It is ultimate enjoyment for the evening, succeeding in transforming me to a heavenly like state with the ever so soft and creamy filling resting on the crumbling shortbread biscuit base. The generous serving makes it even sweeter by the small price tag of $4.50.
The motto here is fresh, fast and global and obviously affordable due to the absence of expensive meat, with main dishes costing a mere $10.80. Global Vegetarian also caters for vegans and those who are gluten intolerant. Restaurants such as Global Vegetarian often make me wonder why I don’t become a vegetarian full-time. If I could eat like this every night, I could easily say bye-bye to bolognese, so-long Jamón and farewell to fois gras! Well, maybe part-time at least.
499 North Road,
03 9578 9566
Lunch: Mon-Fri 12–2.30pm
Dinner: Mon-Sun 5–9pm