If you were born and raised an omnivore, just as we were, you can definitely recall your childhood self complaining about the brussels sprouts by the side of your chicken or the peas in your carbonara. Even the lone lettuce leaf in the sandwich that your parents prepared for you was pushing its luck! And let’s be honest, our adult selves still tend to cringe at the thought of having a meal consisting solely of vegetables - we haven’t changed all that much.
But with Vegetarian Awareness Month just around the corner, our favourite American-style restaurant is about to drop a bombshell. That’s right - Hard Rock Café is preparing to launch a brand new, limited-time only, vegetarian (can be made vegan upon request) food and drinks menu, available from October 2nd to November 12th! Built with locally sourced ingredients to ensure freshness and promote sustainability, this menu brings all-new innovative and exciting options to the table that will leave you spoiled for choice.
Oh, and, breaking news: you do not actually have to be vegetarian to get a taste of these intense flavours that will send your taste buds into overdrive! And take our word for it… after an experience like this one, you’ll totally forget about the lack of meat in your dish.
After an afternoon of devouring dish after mouthwatering dish, here is our take on Hard Rock’s expanded menu that will leave you begging for more.
GRILLED RATATOUILLE WRAP
We’ve all watched the film. A tasty, grilled veggie mix with distinct textures throughout giving you a variety of sensations ranging from soft eggplant to crispy peppers, all wrapped up in a grilled flour tortilla. And as if that’s not enough, you get a bowl of fresh salad on the side to go with it! Fortunately, no rats were harmed (or involved) in the making of this dish. Remy would be proud!
SOUTHWEST GRAIN BOWL
When you hear of a grain bowl, you’re probably inclined to think of something bland and insipid; fodder intended for farm animals. Brace yourself; you’re about to be proved wrong. A hearty bowl of goodness ranging from seasoned quinoa and brown rice to black beans, corn salsa, avocado and more! The best part is that it’s topped with spicy shredded tortilla which is TO-DIE-FOR when dipped into their cilantro garlic tofu cream.
QUINOA AND ARUGULA SALAD
Um, yeah. This is probably the best salad that you’ll find at a Hard Rock…or anywhere else for that matter. No joke, the flavours infused in this salad are off the charts! Not going to lie - just seeing the words ‘brussels’ and ‘sprouts’ on the menu opened up a Pandora’s box of repressed childhood memories, and we instantly began questioning whether we really need to write this article. But holy smokes, we wouldn’t have minded eating brussels sprouts if our parents were these chefs! The blissful combination of brussels sprouts, quinoa, rucola, feta cheese and spicy pecans is guaranteed to provide you with a crunch so satisfying you may have to order a second portion to-go.
SPINACH, POTATO & CHICKPEA BURGER
The house of freshly made, hand-crafted, legendary burgers has certainly delivered on its word. A house made patty combining red-skin potato, spinach, chilli peppers, cilantro, chickpeas and spices, topped with fresh veg and a spiced yoghurt sauce between two toasted brioche buns. The only buns you’ll ever want to see, ever again.
SWEET POTATO & BLACK BEAN TACOS
Definitely the star of the show. A delicious set of corn tortillas loaded with roasted sweet potato, spicy black beans, crispy cabbage, guacamole and chilli for that guaranteed flavour-packed punch. Not omitting the fact that if there was an Oscar for best looks, well…let’s just say that’s another Oscar that Leo DiCaprio can wave goodbye to.
GRILLED HUMMUS QUESADILLAS
Last but certainly not least, Hard Rock’s American-style take on this Mexican classic delivers a finger-licking garlic hummus paste mixed with sautéed spinach, sun dried tomatoes and black olives, neatly packed in a spiced grilled flour tortilla. One of our personal favourites that could definitely change Trump’s mind about building that wall.
Hard Rock has literally thought of everything (and everyone). So, whether you’re in need of some help chugging all that food or whether you’re in the mood for some pre-drink prep before a night out, Hard Rock are here to help.
A handful of new cocktail options are also being launched to complement these vegetarian dishes.
This first one’s for all you oldies but goldies - the Yellowson. A classic blend of Jameson Irish Whiskey and Red Bull garnished with a cherry and an orange wedge to get that old-school groove on.
This next drink will have you feeling Cool As A Cucumber with a fresh blend of Premium Tequila, cucumber, mint and a dash of grapefruit. Definitely a must for this time of year.
Or maybe a Mule Over My Rosemary: a mellow yet refreshing drink constituting of a fusion of Premium Gin and watermelon topped with fresh lime juice and ginger beer to give it that much-desired kick, garnished with rosemary.
For those of you feeling adventurous, we’d definitely have to recommend that you get it on with The Heat Is On. To what at first might seem like a typical mix of Premium Vodka, mint and lime, Hard Rock has thrown in a delightful Almond mixer spiked with jalapeño. Yep, you read that right. Viva El Mexico!
And if that’s not hot enough for you…
Calling all daredevils and thrill-seekers, this drink will definitely take you on a rollercoaster of emotions. A kicking Citrus Mary gives a citrusy twist to the common Bloody Mary that will leave you gasping for air - a strong vodka and liquor mix, combined with a tabasco concocted by the Devil himself, followed by a sweet tomato aftertaste. So, are you ready to take on the challenge?
And for all you hipsters and Pinterest-addicts, these refreshing drinks are served in a trendy mason jar which you can actually take home and Instagram to your heart’s content. Yes, we’re dead-serious. So if you’ve never thought of collecting mason jars before, now would definitely be a good time to start.
And if reading all this still hasn’t got you convinced, remember that this is coming from a couple of meat-eaters who had previously made a blood-pact that “if it doesn’t have meat, I won’t eat”. Seriously, you can thank us later. So what are you waiting for??