Saturday my boyfriend and I headed into DC for a birthday celebration for my boyfriend's grad school roommate. Ahead of the late night festivities we grabbed some lunch at Everlasting Life Cafe, a vegan rasta place that I'd read good things about. We actually live quite close to another vegan rasta place in Baltimore, Land of Kush, which is really great but we thought this place might be different and interesting, so we thought we'd give it a try.
Like Land of Kush, Everlasting Life Cafe had tons of options ready-to-go, so you just ordered and ate almost immediately, kind of like a deli. The only hold up was the incredibly long line to pay - seems like they haven't worked out how to move things more smoothly at the front of the house.
We ordered a lot of different options, most of which were only so-so, and a couple of which we seriously regretted. But both my boyfriend and I agreed whole-heartedly that the fried chicken sandwich was a winner, and something we would definitely get again. As for the losers amongst our choices, I can't help feeling like that was mostly our fault, because you were allowed to try up to three items per person. We didn't take advantage of that, only trying a couple things and ordering plenty that we didn't try first. I also tried a sweet marinated kale that I loved but didn't get ... big mistake I think.
The other - much bigger - problem was that not a single member of the staff was friendly. They mostly ignored us, even when we were trying to order or ask questions, and acted like our ignorance of the restaurant and menu was a burden on them and we shouldn't have bothered to come in. That's the biggest reason we may never go back.
At the birthday celebration later, I was confronted again with difficulties related to vegan drinking. The hosts had ordered a number of cocktails to be circulated among the guests, and most of the time you didn't even know what the cocktail was, let alone whether the individual ingredients were vegan. I took a couple drinks without questioning their makeup, and decided that's probably my plan for all future events like this. If I'm purchasing wine or beer myself, I can stop to google whether it's vegan or not, but if I'm handed a cocktail I think I'll just be saying "thank you."
Where I did know I had no vegan option was when it came time to cut the giant cookie cake (looks delicious!). Sadly, there would be no claiming ignorance here, and I had to pass up on the tasty treat. Yet again, desserts seem to be my biggest hurdle. I rally never crave any food in particular except for sweets, so when they're thrown in my face like this it's incredibly hard to say no. But I did ... And I suppose the more times I manage to say no the easier it will get. I hope ...