I know it may seem like I always go to big vegan-friendly cities, but that couldn't be further from the truth. I often find myself in a remote area, two hours from civilization and vegan restaurants, where I have to fend for myself. This was one of those times. Here I was in Vero Beach, Florida, in an area they call "The Treasure Coast" with no obvious vegan meals in sight. My rule of thumb: when in doubt, look for an ethnic restaurant. And so we found ourselves at Bombay Masala, a local Indian restaurant.
As we had read the reviews ahead of time, we knew they didn't serve alcohol and recommended you bring your own. So we had a bottle of wine with us. Inside, it had a typical run-of-the-mill ethnic feel to it with the cheaper line of wood tables and chairs with pleather backing and urns placed around the room. The nice cloth tablecloths and napkins, however, gave it a slightly nicer feel.
They provided us with some housemade papadums to start with a cilantro sauce.
There weren't too many vegan options and it didn't seem like our server knew much about what was vegan or not so she went back to check with the chef. They recommended we start with the onion fritters and although they were fried, I thought they'd be better than nothing. And, oh, were they fried. We are talking onions dipped in wheat flour and deep-fried. Not very healthy, but they were darned good. Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside just the way they should be. Note to chef: this isn't the best color plate to serve these on. They would have looked better on a white plate with some contrast.
For my entree I went with the Aloo Mattor Gobi, which was potatoes, green peas, and cauliflower cooked in a delicately spiced sauce. I asked for spicy, but I did not get spicy so I added some of their chutneys to it, which were pretty good. The dish itself was pretty good - I just wanted more spice. I also had their Roti.
All in all, it was a fine option for a non-vegan friendly city. There are a few vegan options, which are better than none and the food is good. The entree priced at $12 was a little pricey, but not too far out of what I would think would be the typical range for this area. Would I come back? Yep - if I were stuck in this area again - absolutely.
2050 11th Avenue
Vero Beach, FL 32960