Visiting one’s hometown is always a slightly weird experience – you get the “remember-back-when” mixed in with the “oh-that’s-new.” A new to me restaurant is the Rooster Creek Tavern, located in the downtown village of Arroyo Grande, CA (a town halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles on the Central Coast). There’s an actual creek behind the storefronts with a swinging bridge and real live roosters and chickens freely roaming around the creek and parking lot area.
I’ve notice the restaurant months before but when asked, there wasn’t anything vegan on the menu. I remember thinking that’s too bad.
Too lazy to drive all the way to San Luis Obispo during this last trip, I looked for some place a little closer that could accommodate the diets and tastes of the whole family and gave the Rooster Creek another look-see. This time it looked much more promising, they must have updated the menu since that first inquiry.
I can only confirm the Veggie Paella is vegan – smoked tofu, bell pepper and onion in saffron veg broth with saffron rice. I didn’t ask about any other items. It’s just nice to not always be stuck with a veggie burger when eating out.
The paella is cooked to your spicy level, I went with medium. It came out piping hot, just perfect for the extra chilly weather. It was so warming, I had to take off my jacket.
The flavor is good, but I didn’t really taste the smokiness of the tofu and kinda wish there was a few more pieces. I normally request no bell peppers as they’re not my favorite by a long shot. But I’m actually getting better about having them in my food. I’ll eat them nowadays if they happen to be in a dish. And if they’re any color but green. But I won’t guarantee I’ll eat all of them on my plate (there was a lot as you can see). Now, that’s real progress.