I was surprised when I saw this news story. Even in the San Francisco Bay Area where people tend to be more open to meatless eating, there aren’t any fast food restaurants catering to vegetarians and vegans. That changed this week when Amy’s, the brand known for its meatless canned and frozen foods opened its first fast food drive thru restaurant in Rohnert Park, California in July.
The response has far exceeded their expectations. Every day the restaurant has been packed. There has been a long line of cars at the drive thru window, also.
Glancing over the menu, it looks like they will be able to compete head to head with the burger chains. They offer burgers, burritos, chili, fries, pizza, salad, and macaroni n’ cheese. Vegan and gluten free options are available for every menu item. Not only are the ingredients organic, but the building has a rooftop garden! The prices seem reasonable, too. A single patty burger is under $3 and you get a discount if you want it without cheese.
Does Amy’s Drive Thru have staying power? Can they recreated their delicious food in a fast food environment? If they stick to their mission, they will. This is what it says on the website “Amy’s Drive Thru is returning to the roots of American fast food, serving lovingly handcrafted food to nourish hard-working citizens, busy families and road-weary travellers”. I’m all for that!
Let’s face it. The meat free crowd likes convenience, too. We don’t always feel like cooking every day, especially when it’s hot in the summer.
I don’t know about you, but I rarely eat at fast food restaurants. Maybe two or three times a year. It’s too difficult to find vegan fare at fast food restaurants. And, even when they tell me something is dairy free, I usually find out later that it wasn’t.
I end up settling with a salad and then pick off all the cheese. Cheese is dairy. I know you know that, but there seems to be an awful lot of people who don’t. I’m left with shredded carrots and iceberg lettuce. That is hardly a meal.
I’m interested to see how this pans out. Will the novelty wear off in a month or will Amy’s Restaurant be a success? Only time will tell.
Would you like to see an Amy’s in your area? Do you think the food will be worth the convenience? Are you ready for drive thru meatless food?
For more information on this venture, visit the Amy’s Drive Thru website.
It isn’t easy being vegan and eating out. There are guides to help make the experience a little easier.