The Foundation – Needs to Work on its Basics

by L Matthews on December 30, 2013

eat broccoli for calcium

I really loved the Sesamum Salad with broccoli in a sweet tahini dressing.

It took me a while to get around to going in Foundation, despite it being about a five minute walk from my house. This may be because it is practically opposite Wallflower Diner on Main St. at 8th and as you may have noticed from my review of the Wallflower, that diner stole my heart in my earliest Vancouver days.

I’d not heard anything about Foundation and so had simply assumed that if it were worth it my foodie vegan friends would have told me so. So, finally, I went to Foundation on an evening where Wallflower was busy and I and my date were ravenous and unwilling to wait.

My first few visits to Foundation were a success as I found the Sesamum Salad with its deliciously satisfying sweet tahini dressed broccoli and tofu goodness. This became my go-to, along with a Mason jar of oatmeal stout. My date had the OPP. We became stuck in our ways. Then I went with another date and she had a bean dish that basically just looked like a pile of beans. She insisted the dressing was good but I was a little nonplussed by the presentation.

Then, disaster struck!

Post-pride, while I was wearing a dress that was happily impervious to the rain (oh 80’s fashion), I and my date arrived at the Foundation with the craving for vegan nachos (which they had previously provided) and we were sopping wet with rain. We waited to be served, and waited, and waited. The server appeared to be talking to his friends, forever. We seated ourselves and dripped everywhere. We began to pout. We pouted more obviously. I may or may not have cleared my throat.

Eventually the chap deigns to head over and we ask for vegan nachos. He looks put out. He says it’s not possible. We laugh, then realise he’s serious.

We explain the concept of Daiya or, shock horror, nachos without cheese. He goes and asks the kitchen. We can see the kitchen. The guy behind the counter looks put out. Our server returns and tells us that he’s sorry but it’s not possible for the kitchen to make nachos without cheese. Apparently the chips will burn.

My date (using years of law school training) calmly explains how the kitchen can mix up a little bowl of beans on the side, maybe some guacamole, and then just load up the nachos with all the usual nacho fixings. I struggle not to laugh. We practically volunteer to go and help the kitchen figure out how to put beans on the side. He’s sorry (no he’s not), but it’s just not possible to make vegan nachos.

We leave, hungry and irked. Subsequently, I discover that the reason most of my friends never mentioned Foundation is because they had discovered a while ago that the service was subpar and so had simply stopped going. This is a shame as the food is often good, just don’t ask for vegan nachos.

This little scenario got me thinking about fun conversations we vegans have had with servers. I try very hard not to be in any way obnoxious when ordering food. I would not want to be a server and I always try to tip generously and be courteous and as nice a customer as possible. I don’t like being treated with wilful obtuseness, however. I will usually pick the simplest thing on a menu so as to not be the awkward vegan. I try to limit myself to just one subsitution or omitted item in a non-vegan dish, especially when out with a large party, with a party that has complex ordering needs because of allergies, or when out with omnivores (so basically, all the time).

I will go back to Foundation (although I’ve now figured out how to make that Sesamum Salad, yum) but it’ll be when the Wallflower is busy and I’m hungry, not as a first choice.

And, just to knitpick further, be warned that the menu here is done in a hilarious comic font and everything is misspelt. It hurts my editor-eyes, especially as the misspellings are inconsistent. Fellow editors, do not bring a red pen with you when eating at the Foundation. Just drink your beer quietly and everything will be fine.

Green Web Hosting! This site hosted by DreamHost. Want carbon-neutral webhosting with great customer service? Try DreamHost and use code 'Vegans' for a third off!

Leave a Comment

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Previous post:

Next post: