We're living in Round Rock, home of the big, round rock that once guided stagecoaches and wagons around deep waters while crossing the local creek. Fascinating, right? Well, Round Rock has an expectedly limited milk/gluten free menu, so I'm doing my best to stay interested in local dining.
I've tried the overpriced Cajun fish tacos at Louisiana Longhorn Cafe without much amusement, had disappointing pho and vermicelli bowls at Pho Viet and faced the reality of eating gluten and dairy free at my old standby, Taco Cabana. Every time I drive by I shed a tear for their flour tortillas. My local favorite is Vazquez Restaurant, for their fabulous tacos and ideal location just five minutes from my front door. And yes, I've found that even in a place rife with breakfast tacos, I still find myself disgruntled. Now, for months bereft of my dearest neighborhood assortment of fresh Pacific fish, GF crepes and Vietnamese food I'm scouting the surrounding counties for palatable options.
|Nancy's Sky Cafe's Fresh Hummus Rolls|
|Nancy's Sky Cafe's Garden Noodles|
My latest search has turned up Nancy's Sky Garden, the freshest and absolute best vegetarian food I've ever had. Modestly priced at around $10 a plate, Nancy's serves delicious, colorful dishes on a fourth floor patio overlooking downtown Georgetown. The fresh rolls ($6) are served with a dipping sauce, (almond-ginger, please) and the Garden Noodles are made of sweet potato, full of flavor and dropped in the middle of a wildly festive veggie orgy. (Are you conversely considering an orgy of vegetables, too? I know, SO different.) What will I do without this place when we move into Austin? Koriente. Nancy's original restaurant at 7th and Sabine. THANK you. Thank you thank you.
|Dos Salsa's Bryan Salad, sans quesos|
|Bouldin Creek Cafe's V-Lux Salad|
Down south in Austin proper, I stopped into Bouldin Creek Cafe for a little nosh and an Italian soda. I had high hopes for the vegan horchata, but it turned out to be grainy and way over-infused. Their V-Lux salad, however was a bright, fresh display of all my favorite things on the same plate. Oh, yes, another salad on a plate. Who, oh who will champion the big salad bowl? Didn't Elaine make this clear? Stuffing a mass of greens past my grill is work enough, do I really have to spend half the meal rescuing fallen leaves from the table? An unnecessary demonstration of my grace and patience.
|Mr. Natural's Veggie Burger|
on a GF Sesame Bun
Then there's good ol' Mr. Natural. Back in my vegetarian days before I knew what gluten was, I was all over this place. The Mr. Natural burger on a GF sesame seed bun is really quite a find. A wheat-free patty and a side of fries was just right. If you're from Austin, you know Mr. Natural and Veggie Heaven (can I get a what what for those vegan Spicy Yams???) have the lock on veggie fare, but if you're visiting and those are all you hear about, take a listen here and haul ass to the nearest East Side King.
|East Side Kings' Liberty Rice & GF Veggie Meshi|
Dine on, readers! And do let me know if you have any vegan/gluten free recommendations up north.