There are two things we know about megastar Beyonce right now: First, she'll be in Dallas on December 9 for her concert at American Airlines Center. Second, she and hubby Jay Z just adopted a vegan diet, which they'll follow until Christmas.
Their decision made national news, igniting a round of speculation about their motives, ability to adhere to the diet, and alleged hypocrisy for continuing to wear fur or leather. Meanwhile, more people than ever became acquainted with the idea of vegan eating, which means no meat, fish, dairy or eggs.
We know something else about Beyonce and Jay Z: They like to eat out at restaurants. Last time they visited Dallas, they dined at Mesa in Oak Cliff. But navigating the vegan-restaurant world takes insider knowledge. True, Beyonce could consult DallasVegan.com or even follow the Foodspotting feed of adventurous vegan AliVegan.
But neither of those options would land her here at CultureMap Dallas; we think that would be a mistake. Therefore, as a public service, we offer these tips for Beyonce on where to eat vegan in Dallas:
If she wants to visit the game-changer restaurant that helped legitimize vegan food in Dallas, she should hit Spiral Diner. We recommend the veggie burger, served on a soft wheat bun, with choice of sides (we suggest the potato salad), or else the Jamaican jerk BBQ sandwich, with tempeh marinated in jerk sauce, blackened and topped with grilled pineapple, lettuce, red onion, pickles and mayo. And with Spiral's recently acquired liquor license, she can get beer or wine too.
If Beyonce wants to go beyond vegan, she'll try Be Raw, which is not only vegan but raw: Nothing has been exposed to high heat, leaving the enzymes and other beneficial nutrients intact. If we were joining her for a bite, we'd urge her to order the Rawkos Tacos, whose crisp shells include nuts, and a slice of some of the best vegan cheesecake in town.
If she wants to enjoy her vegan meal in a good-karma setting, the pop star will head for Kalachandji's, the vegetarian buffet located at the Krishna temple in East Dallas. It's a buffet with a mild Indian theme, so the only suggestion we'd make is that she choose carefully, because some dishes may contain butter or cheese.
If she wants her vegan grub in a bar atmosphere, Beyonce can take her pick from Anvil Pub in Deep Ellum or Libertine Bar and Sundown at Granada, both on Greenville Avenue. At Anvil, the dish to order is vegan nachos, topped with everything but meat. Libertine's pick is fried seitan tacos, crunchy and hot. At Sundown, she should try the Machu Picchu, a generous melange of quinoa, sweet potato, black beans and peanuts.
If Beyonce is in the mood for an Asian-accented feast — noodles, rice, stir-fried veggies — she'll find lots of choices in the suburbs. Veggie Garden in Richardson does authentic Cantonese cuisine from Hong Kong; think sesame soy "chicken" with broccoli. D'Vegan near Garland does Vietnamese, including a lovely zucchini pho. Loving Hut in Addison is the international chain with a big buffet of veggies, steamed and fried, supplemented by a menu with American classics like burgers and crinkle-cut fries.
If Indian is what she craves, then Madras Pavilion or Udipi Cafe, both in Richardson, will impress with stellar buffets. Udipi will be quieter and smaller-scale but with some fiery heat; at Madras, she'll need to go elbow-to-elbow to get her share of the thick porridge called aval upma.
If she's dreaming about veggie sushi, she'll find two within reach: Zen Sushi in Bishop Arts or Sushi Zushi, whose Oak Lawn branch recently relocated to the West Village. Zen has a page dedicated entirely to vegan and vegetarian items, such as the delectable inari zushi –— fried tofu pockets with rice inside. Sushi Zushi has a massive menu with hundreds of items, including nifty little maki rolls with avocado.