As soon as I'd announced my trip to Goa, the first question people shot at me was, "What are you going to do in Goa since you're a vegetarian and a teetotaler?"
It was a much-curious question for the drinkers and the non-vegetarians, but on my part, there was not a much-thought answer. It's not just about Goa, but even on Saturday nights, when my friends see my half-naked pictures on Instagram and wonder, "What does this lady do in a night club when she doesn't drink or smoke?" Though the answers to the first question and the second differs, I would say, I relish the place I am at. (I don't mean to say that the people who drink or eat non-vegetarian food are not enjoying the place.) In this post, I would like to reveal what exactly does a vegetarian teetotaler do in places like Goa – and share few tips along.
Firstly, all the vegetarian teetotalers have chosen this life. If we really wished for it, we could have gone beyond the set "boundaries" and would have consumed alcohol or eat meat, but we haven't – yet. We are not the poor souls who have been forced upon these rules. We have set these rules ourselves and have chosen to refrain from alcohol and meat.
|Maaza and Finger Chips at Boomerang Beach Restaurant and Bar|
|Fruit Punch (left), Virgin Pina Colada (right) at Shalai, The Cliff Bar|
|Fruit Punch at Rose Roy Royal|
|Fruit Punch (top), Virgin Pina Colada (bottom) at Shalai, The Cliff Bar|
So arriving at Goa with this mindset makes things simpler. When in Goa, what can a teetotaler gulp down? The answer is ingenious: Our locally available soft drinks that come with and without soda or the incredibly mixed mocktails that add the right amount of glamour to your table could be the options. Personally, I don't fancy drinks with soda, so I either settle down for mango drinks (Slice, Maaza, Frooti), stylish mocktails (Virgin Mojito, Virgin Pina Colada, Fruit Punch) or a lemon infused water (lemonade sans soda), depending on my mood and the restaurant I'm dining at.
In Goa, you would often be circled by a crowd that is flashing green bottles and you wished you looked half as cool. Staying in a line with this crowd is not impossible as you can stretch out to green coloured non-alcoholic bottles like Sprite, Mountain Dew or that popular drink that gives you wings (Red Bull). Once you have a uber-cool bottle/can in your hand, you're all set to be one amongst the crowd.
|Veg Crispy at Shalai, The Cliff Bar|
|Veg Crispy at Rose Roy Royal|
|Pasta at Leda Lounge & Restaurant|
|Fried Mushroom Cheese Spinach Balls at The Station|
For vegetarians, Goa is not a bad destination after all. I agree that in Goa you get deliciously fried fishes and excellently roasted meat, but that doesn't mean you're not going to enjoy the food. Out of all the places I've had vegetarian food there, I devoured all the dishes I tasted. May it be the Veg Crispy at a high-end restaurant like the Shalai, located on a cliff overlooking Anjuna beach, or the creamy veg cheese sandwich at an adorably decorated cafe like the Baker's Street, situated in Penha de Franca, the herbivorous humans would surely love these dishes. If for one meal, you crave for crispy onion uttapam or a perfectly made masala dosa, Goa and the neighbouring places are a home to a lot of Udupi restaurants.
Now that you know how to survive as a vegetarian teetotaler in Goa, I hope to see you exploring more dishes and drinks that serve your notion. Do share your experiences with me.