Booze and compassion at V-Grits

V-Grits opened three months ago with a bang, and it’s been a happening place in Germantown ever since.

This restaurant’s owners did a lot of things right from the get go. They started out with a food truck, provided a high-quality product, and got their name out there. They built up a clientele that would follow the truck to a brick and mortar establishment.

Then they partnered with False Idol, a local microbrewery, establishing, so far as I know, the first and only strictly vegetarian restaurant in Louisville where you can get beer with your cruelty-free lunch or dinner.

I would be remiss not to mention that the beer drinker in my life really likes False Idol. Especially if he has to eat vegan food.

It’s also obvious that V-grits put a lot of time and thought into their recipes.

And they took over a huge building (the former Monkey Wrench) that really needed an occupant. It’s a GREAT location on Grinstead, but really needs two businesses to make rent.

I’ve been to V-Grits three times now. And for my money, the best thing is the macaroni and cheese.

This is a flight of macaroni and cheese at V-Grits. Start here.

I also enjoyed the cole slaw, but suffered some sticker shock concerning the cost vs. quantity. Tiny portion, high price, in other words.

I’ve stared at the chalkboard menu at V-Grits long enough to really annoy the cashier. My problem is that I can’t find any vegetables in a vegetarian restaurant. I keep looking, but there’s nothing that looks like a chickpea or a stalk of asparagus.

Here’s the thing: I actually like vegetables. Yes, the ecological cost of meat is far too high. Raising cattle uses way too many (vegetarian) resources, cows crap methane, they pollute the water.

And the transportation of them to the butcher and then the store or restaurant is the leading cause of climate change.

So when I go to a vegetarian restaurant, all this is in the back of my mind. But, setting all that aside, I actually really dig the green stuff.

That’s what I’m missing at V-Grits: a passion for vegetables. When I stand in front of the menu for twenty minutes, it’s because everything has the name of a meat dish: hot brown, barbecue, burger, cheese steak.

Without advance research, I can’t figure out what’s in any of that. Presumably, what’s in a burger is not actually hamburger meat, but how do I know what vegetables or grains are in it? And whether I will recognize or like them?

I took a chance on the hot brown the other day, and it turned out to be rather dry biscuits with a meatless sauce of unidentifiable ingredients.

I believe this is the hot brown.

There were some cherry tomatoes. I knew what they were. That was the highlight of the meal.

So V-Grits is doing an excellent job of disguising vegetables and grains as something else.

And, for those people who need to imagine that they are eating a steak or burger or hot brown, this is probably the vegetarian restaurant of choice.

If I were to respectfully offer some advice to management, however, it would be: Be brave. Serve a few green things. Some people like to recognize their food.

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