vegansaurus!

02/02/2010

Rosamunde in the Mission: it’s a vegan sausage fest!  »

Some of you may be familiar with the venerable Rosamunde Sausage Grill in the Lower Haight. It’s only about 20 square feet, but between it and its next-door neighbor, Toronado, I have spent many a perfect Saturday afternoon eating vegan sausage and drinking beer (don’t judge!). Now, Rosamunde has opened a brand-spanking-new Mission location (at 24th and Mission Streets), complete with their very own beer list AND seating for, well, more than the four people the Haight Street location can accommodate.

Vegan kielbasa with grilled onions and sweet peppers with spicy brown mustard and a dollop of ketchup

First things first: Rosamunde is not a primarily vegan location. They serve meat sausages of ALL KINDS, and many people may choose to pass based on that, which is cool, because it just leaves more vegan sausages for me!

Rosamunde has a very simple concept: grilled sausages of various kinds on fresh french rolls with a choice of select toppings for around $6 and a close proximity to beer. The rolls are always super-fresh and delicious, and the toppings pretty much rule: grilled onion, sweet peppers, hot peppers (or a mixture of both), sauerkraut, and a range of mustards and ketchup. The Haight Street Rosamunde offers one vegan sausage: it’s a Tofurky variety (though I can never tell which kind—I think maybe the beer brat), and it’s good, but there’s only the one kind. The new Mission spot offers a selection (!!!) of vegan sausages, which is fancy and makes having only a single option look like communist Berlin. When we ate there last night, the ol’ ball and chain had an apple sage dealy, and I had the kielbasa. The menu lists the vegan sausage as a “daily offering,” so I am going to optimistically interpret that to mean that they will offer a range of vegan sausages and be receptive to trying out new ones. YOU HEAR THAT, ROSAMUNDE?

Vegan apple sage sausage with saurkraut, grilled onions, and spicy brown mustard.

In addition to sausages, the Mission location also offers vegan baked beans, fries, the biggest, most obscene-looking pickles that you’ve ever seen, and vegan split-pea soup. They also have a sausage platter that includes a sausage (or two), baked beans, and salad. Oh, and beer. They focus on quality, craft beers, and lots of their stuff on tap is of the strong persuasion. Handily, they list the alcohol content right next to the names and prices. OH! And (I almost forgot these) they also have Helwa vegan wafers in three or four different varieties. It’s a nice touch, especially if you get the kind of PMS I get where you need to have sugar, salty and booze in your mouth all at once. Handy!

The atmosphere of the place is something like “German Hunting Lodge with DJ playing an odd mix of Dead Kennedys and Hot Water Music with friendly tattooed hipster counter person.” Sounds odd, yes, but it works. There are lots of long tables with benches for cramming many people in, and boy were there lots of people crammed in when we hit it up last night. Hopefully it’ll calm down a bit once it’s not so new, but for now at least, be prepared to wait 15 minutes or so for your sausage, which is okay, since they have all that beer.

The only complaint I have about this place (besides all the meat, which, let me clarify, sucks, but I’d rather have meaty places acknowledge, accommodate, and respect vegans than not) is that while they are open for breakfast (and even offer free coffee with breakfast! AMAZING), they don’t have a vegan breakfast sausage. Their current breakfast offering is a breakfast sausage with egg and cheddar. I know I’d be pretty happy to have a breakfast sausage with Cheesly and tomato and onion or something. JUST SAYING, ROSAMUNDE!

11/17/2008

Review: Beretta!  »

Beretta is totally fucking awesome. It’s chic, although I hate using that word because it basically negates its meaning. It’s like the word “classy”. Nothing that’s classy can be described with the word “classy.” AM I RIGHT OR WHAT? Beretta is hip, it’s the ALL RIGHT OUTTASIGHT BEST! Inside, you can sit at the bar, or at a long communal table in the middle, or at a personal table. If it’s warm out, you can sit outside along 23rd Street. Even if it’s not terribly warm, they have heating lamps and you own a jacket, you live in fucking San Francisco. They make insane cocktails—some of the bartenders formerly worked at the Tenderloin’s classy Bourbon and Branch—many of which include absinthe! I love it! My favorite is the Dolores Park Swizzle, which is made with rum, lime, maraschino, absinthe and bitters. It’s served on a mountain of crushed ice. It’s the perfect alcoholic beverage. Or you might choose to indulge in a Hemingway, which is white rum, lime, cane syrup, maraschino and grapefruit! Just thinking about their outrageous drink menu, I want to start drinking at 1:30 p.m. on a Monday. Jesus, take the wheel!

Now, all that’s fine and dandy. Great location in the heart of the Mission, super-sleek interior, outside drinking of amazing drinks but WHAT ELSE, VEGANSAURUS? WHY ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT THIS PLACE? SURELY A PLACE SO PRETENTIOUS-SEEMING AND BOURGIE WILL HAVE NOTHING FOR OUR PEOPLE! And that’s where I say, YOU ARE WRONG AND ALSO A JUDGMENTAL JERK I THINK I LOVE YOU! Because Beretta serves up some of the best thin-crust pizza in town MADE WITH VEGAN CHEESE (!!!) AND VEGAN SAUSAGE!!! A recent addition to their menu, we vegans must partake of it in mass quantities so that they know it was worth it! And it is! Because it’s DELICIOUS! I got the potato, rosemary, radicchio, and gorgonzola dolce, sub vegan mozzarella for the gorgonzola and add vegan sausage! HELLO AMAZING CHEESY POTATO SAUSAGE PIZZA! You can substitute vegan cheese FOR FREE on any pizza that already has cheese. Love that! In a world that STILL charges 50 cents when you sub soy milk, WTF?!, this switching cheese for vegan cheese thing is just totally wonderful. I think the vegan cheese is Teese but it might be Follow Your Heart; it’s high-quality. They can make almost all of their appetizers vegan too. Try the persimmon salad and the brussels sprouts, both fantastic.

I really love Beretta. It is now about five steps from my front door (I’m employing hyperbole, but it’s close) and so I plan to be there pretty much every night once the pile of money I’m expecting to land on my face arrives later this afternoon. I’m incredibly excited about Beretta and I want to scream it from the rooftops, I want to dress as a bear and set myself on fire and run down Market Street, screaming its name! Or write about it on Vegansaurus! It was a coin toss, a Russian Roulette if you will. You guys lose, so this is your review. BYE!!!

[photos via yelp]

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