Each week, new Meatless Monday restaurants are popping up worldwide. From large chains to fine dining, chefs and restaurateurs are discovering the many benefits Meatless Monday offers for both their patrons and their pockets. This week we welcomed Field of Greens, Bambu Vegetariano and 2941 to the movement. Though very different, each has found that Meatless Monday is a great way to share their menu with new customers:
Field of Greens has three locations across southeastern Florida, offering a wide range of soups, sandwiches and custom made salads. For Meatless Monday the small chain has introduced brand new items to the menu, including a corn, black bean and cheese quesadilla, complete with homemade guacamole and mango salsa.
For chains across the U.S. Meatless Monday is an easy, uniform way to promote veggie options. With over 400 restaurants nationwide, Moe’s Southwest Grill starts the week by highlighting healthy portions and their organic tofu dishes. This not only informs patrons of these options, but encourages those who might not of otherwise to give them a try.
Monday is the perfect day for a meatless menu in other countries too! Bambu Vegetariano in Valparaiso, Chile promotes their Monday menu -and shares the health benefits of meatless meals with their neighbors- through local radio announcements and signs in store.
There are now Meatless Monday movements in 15 countries worldwide. For many restaurants Meatless Monday is both a promotional tool and a way to teach the public about nutritious choices. Fry’s Vegetarian in South Africa, for example, uses the campaign to boost awareness of their meatless entrees and share the health and environmental perks of plant-based meals.
In fine restaurants, Meatless Monday gives chefs an opportunity to create inspired menus. At 2941 in Falls Church Virginia, Monday means meatless specials and a 6-course vegetarian tasting menu, including options like handmade cheese fondue ravioli with cauliflower & black truffle and crispy wild rice with walnuts & shaved artichoke salad.
Food columnist Kim O’Donnel noted that 2941′s participation in Meatless Mondays “shows the confidence of chefs that meatless cuisine can be as visually appealing and delicious as meat-centric plates, that it’s food worth the time and effort in a high-end restaurant.”
Not only does Meatless Monday show off the beauty of vegetables and the skills of chefs, it also has customers clamoring for more. In a recent interview with ABC 7, chef John Fraser of Dovetail in New York City said that his Meatless Monday promotions have “been great. We basically book out every Monday night as a result. Its become kind of an event and its interesting because, as a restaurateur, you see a very different demographic in the restaurant than you normally would on Tuesday through Saturday.” For fine chefs like Fraser, Meatless Monday is an excellent opportunity to expand their audience as well as the pallets of regulars.
No matter the style, Meatless Monday is a healthy promotion that restaurants can get behind! For a list of Meatless Monday restaurants in your area, check out our global movement page.