Eat your greens!

Founded in 1974 in the USA, Friday 1st October marks World Vegetarian Day which promotes an increasing awareness of people’s eating habits as more and more of us are either eating less meat, more fish or are completely turning towards a vegetarian or vegan diet. Ross-on-Wye’s many restaurants have been serving up delicious vegetarian meals for a long time and for anyone looking for a veggie menu, there is a huge array on offer catering for all tastes.

No 3: the current menu at this stylish restaurant on Gloucester Road has a range of options including vegan and vegetarian starters and mains, such as goat’s cheese mousse with beetroot carpaccio, curried cauliflower fritters and confit of butternut squash with tagliatelle pasta. They even have a dedicated vegan menu including mouth-watering desserts such as sticky toffee pudding and warm treacle tart with vegan vanilla ice cream. Call 01989 564997 to book. Their ‘sister’ establishment on the High Street, Leonard’s at 39, has both vegan and veggie tapas on their menu such as smashed avocado, homemade falafel, mac ‘n’ cheese, bbq cauliflower bites and mozzarella sticks. Their afternoon tapas tea menu also has veggie bagels and jerk-seasoned mediterranean vegetable & halloumi skewers. Call 01989 567830 to book.

The King’s Head‘s refurbished conservatory restaurant is a relaxing environment to enjoy an evening meal – the chefs use fresh local market produce and menus include vegetarian options such as Cajun-spiced Israeli couscous with goat’s cheese, dates & garlic croutons; Mediterranean macaroni with courgette & peppers in tomato ragu; and pepper, mushroom and courgette tian with rosemary & thyme new potatoes. You can either eat in the main restaurant or in the cosy library with soft lighting and comfy furnishings. Call  01989 763174 to book.

The Royal: this iconic hotel with its stunning views over the River Wye has extensive menus served from 7am to 10pm and include many popular vegetarian and vegan dishes – starters include soups, halloumi fries and sweet potato, chickpea & red pepper koftas plus they have a variety of main dishes including vegan fish and chips, goat’s cheese & roasted pumpkin tart or vegetarian burgers, made with chickpeas, red peppers & hoisin. If you fancy joining them for a weekend brunch, they serve both a Vegetarian and Vegan English Breakfast as well as avocado on toast and buttermilk pancakes with fruit. Full menus available online or call to book on 01989 565105.

Avellinos: this lovely Italian bistro on the High Street serves an array of vegetarian dishes on their lunch and evening menus. You’ll be hard pressed to choose from their extensive selection of starters and salads, risottos, pasta and pizza – including homemade bruschetta di napoli, linguine primavera or risotto al funghi. Call 01989 769222 to book.

On Broad Street, there are a number of eateries including the delightful American diner and ice-cream shop, Gelati’s, which serves up a selection of vegetarian jacket potatoes, salads and quiches or for early birds, you can try their ‘Vegelatis‘ full English vegetarian breakfast – vegetarian sausages, free-range eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms, hash browns and wilted spinach.

Over the road, the King Charles II pub serves plant-based burgers, Mexican nachos, buffalo cauliflower wings, vegan chilli burgers and vegetable & lentil chilli with vegan ice cream sundae to finish.

At the bottom of Broad Street, you’ll find Jacqueline’s Vegetarian Café, with its brightly coloured windows and street art on the walls outside. A small independent business, and a lovely cosy spot to unwind, this is Ross-on-Wye’s only licensed vegetarian café which caters for everyone including vegans and those on gluten-free diets. Homemade dishes include soups, paninis, quiche, sandwiches plus afternoon tea, cakes and scones to eat in or takeaway. Make sure you try their Himalayan Stew if you’re visiting!

The Man of Ross Inn is a firm favourite with the locals with its outside seating at the top of Wye Street – perfect for enjoying a pint or a bite to eat watching the sun go down. Vegetarian options include their panfried garlic mushrooms on ciabatta or warm ‘barra gallega‘ rustic baguette with vegetarian sausages, Cornish brie & cranberry sauce. For something more substantial, they offer butternut squash, goat’s cheese & beetroot burgers served on a toasted bun. Call 01989 763111 for further information.

Finally, if you’re a spice-lover or enjoy Indian, Thai or Chinese takeaways, there are plenty of healthy vegetarian options on offer. Ross-on-Wye has a great selection of takeaways including Riceberry Thai Cuisine; Café Zam Zam, Masala Flavours, Obilash and Rasoi for delicious Indian food; Indyyum offers a selection of pan-Asian dishes; or for traditional Chinese takeaways you can try Dragon House, China Boy Jo or New Golden Horse. Enjoy!