- The Heritage Cafe
314 Laskin Road, VA Beach
This is kind of a little hippy-esque, new-agey, health food kinda restaurant just a short walk from the beach. It is an eat-in place, but don't expect pomp and circumstance: they mostly just have little coffee-shop-like tables scattered about, and they serve the food to you on a cafeteria tray. However, they have a large amount of vegan items on their menu and seem happy and willing enough to make adjustments for you if requested. And their food was good and not terribly expensive.
There is also a health-food store attached, as well as a Books & Gifts Center that was fun to roam around in. *AND* they even offer massages up in back--I got one a handful of years back and enjoyed it quite a bit.
WHAT I ATE: The portabella mushroom sandwich with balsamic marinated portabella, roasted red pepper, hummus, tomato, and red onion on a whole wheat bun with a side of vegan broccoli slaw *AND* an a la carte side of Teriyaki Tofu.
WHAT E ATE: The Chipotle Black Bean Burger with lettuce, tomato, red onion, shredded carrots, veganaise, & yellow mustard on an Ezekiel bun with a side of vegan potato salad and a House Salad.
Sakura Japanese Restaurant
2973 Shore Dr Ste 111, VA Beach
Sakura offers up your standard Japanese fare, including 5 or 6 vegetarian rolls. The food is very good, the atmosphere is cute and cozy, and the people are nice.
WHAT WE BOTH ATE: A bowl of miso soup, a house salad with ginger dressing, two inari sushi rolls per person, one roll of avocado and cucumber sushi, and one roll of Garden Vegetable sushi (which was stuffed with lettuce, tomato, avocado, and cucumber--sounds weirder than it was; ended up being quite good actually), all for under $20.
- Bombay Paradise
4000 Virginia Beach Blvd., Loehmann's Plaza Shopping Center, VA Beach
We stumbled across this restaurant while paging around in our hotel's little restaurant booklet--it had a listing for VEGETARIAN AND VEGAN ENTREES, so we knew that we'd probably have success there, and this was most definitely my favorite restaurant of the trip. It started off with a bit of confusion when the server had the terms "vegetarian" and "vegan" mixed up and was telling me all the vegetarian things (with cheese cubes and stuff) were vegan, until we realized he had the two terms reversed and solved the problem. After that, we realized they carried a windfall of vegan food--at least 5 vegan appetizers, at least 1 or 2 soups, at least 5 entrees, and they were even willing to cook the bread for us without the normal butter they use so that it would be vegan as well. The place is gorgeous inside--very intricately decorated with fantastic tablecloths and lighting. And yet, the prices were not unreasonable--entrees were $9.99 and included basmati rice, and there were coupons in the VA Beach tourist booklets for $3 off any two $10+ entrees. The food was *fan-fricking-tastic* (the rasam--spicy Indian soup--was out of this world), the atmosphere was very relaxed and yet sophisticated, and the people were so very nice, helpful, and friendly--about 4 different people came up at various times to ask us how the food was (including what I assumed was the cook himself), they were super-helpful in figuring out which foods were vegan, and like 5 different people waved at us in unison as we were leaving.
WHAT WE BOTH ATE: Vegetable samosas, rasam soup, stuffed Parathas (bread stuffed with garlic--cooked without butter, just for us), and Aloo Gobi (curried potatoes and cauliflower)