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Supercharging for Vegetarians

Supercharging for Vegetarians

I hate to sound picky, but as the Supercharger network continues to expand, I've noticed that little attention appears to be given relative to the quality of food available at many locations, especially for vegetarians. The reality is that on long distance trips, you try to time eating with SC stops rather than making separate stops to eat. The problem is that many stops just don't offer great eating options.

For example, the new Rolla, MO SC is located at the parking lot of a Bandana's BBQ restaurant, with no other options nearby. I've also been to Superchargers in Binghamton, NY and South Hill, VA, which are similar situations. Some SC's over extremely good eating options, such as the one in Edison, NJ that has a Seasons 52 and a Macaroni Grill close by, or Woodbridge, VA that has a wide range of options.

I'm currently planning my holiday travel, as as a vegetarian, the I-70 seems to be an endless chain of fast food, steakhouses, and BBQ joints. Considering how you're likely to spend 40 mins at an SC stop, I'd love it if the onboard app would provide some drill-down detail as to food options at SC stops, like the website does.

jordanrichard | 13 dicembre 2016

Yes, that is ultra picky. The goal and focus of the SC network is for convenient charging on major routes. If there are no vegetarian options at those locations, that is just the roll of the dice. In my travels up and down the East Coast I seemingly can't get away from Panera Bread. Off the top of my head I can think of 3 locations that have Panera bread as the nearest food option. I find Panera bread's menu board to be overwhelming and would normally never go to Panera bread.

RedShift | 13 dicembre 2016

I'm afraid you might have to pick up from a nearby veggie place to go.

Bighorn | 13 dicembre 2016

Food choices are not good for anyone generally, but barbeque places usually have a vegetable plate. I don't blame the supercharger team for playing the cards they're dealt.

vperl | 13 dicembre 2016

Fill your ice chest with carrots, apples, prune juice and some kale, or green leaf.

........

O:-)

O:-)

O:-)

Rocky_H | 13 dicembre 2016

@notblueclk,
Quote: "For example, the new Rolla, MO SC is located at the parking lot of a Bandana's BBQ restaurant, with no other options nearby. [...] I-70 seems to be an endless chain of fast food, steakhouses, and BBQ joints."

Yes, yes it is. It's rural Missouri. I'm sorry, but vegetarianism is a pretty much urban phenomenon. You are usually going to find it hard to locate really good vegetarian food options in places like Rolla and other small towns in middle America. This has nothing to do with Tesla or Supercharger placement.

Earl and Nagin ... | 13 dicembre 2016

I think that if you want to eat vegetarian/vegan/kosher/halal/gluten-free/paleo/soy-free/or any other diet that is different from that which the local populous enjoy , you will need to either restrict where you go or bring it with you. It seems entirely unreasonable to blame your car maker or energy provider any more than blaming your airline because they take you to a region where you don't like the local diet.
On the other hand, there's no problem with politely asking the local establishments near Superchargers if they offer options for your particular dietary restrictions. If there are enough people with your particular restrictions, they may find it worth amending their menus to attract people with your preferences.

Rocky_H | 13 dicembre 2016

I'm a bit reminded of the movie "My Blue Heaven", where Steve Martin plays a mobster from New York City who is having to hide in witness protection in a small rural town until the trial. He goes in to a grocery store and is asking to find arugula.
"What's that?"
"It is a veg-e-ta-ble."

madgehart | 16 dicembre 2016

For the time being, unfortunately, stations will appeal more broadly to carnivores. Once EV's become mainstream, we can start working on nutrition! ;) Veg-e-ta-bles!

Gwgan | 17 dicembre 2016

Once vegetarianism becomes mainstream we will have more options. @notblueclk add your observations during your long trip to the drill down at https://chargerville.com and include comments about veg choices for others to follow. Thanks.

David N | 17 dicembre 2016

Yes, it's too picky.
What about vegans,
what about carnevours
What about children
What about children size vegetarian meals
What about vegan children meals
What about what about.

If we each can't figure out how to take care of ourselves when we travel, perhaps we should stay home.

codyb12889 | 17 dicembre 2016

Find vegetarian places.

Recommend they install destination chargers.

???

Profit.

SCCRENDO | 17 dicembre 2016

Unfortunately a problem with rural America. Judging by the lack of sympathy by some of the more rural Americans on this thread no surprise. The lack of understanding of healthy eating directly lead to our obesity and diabetes epidemics beginning in childhood. Even the vegetarian options are not that great in some places. If you were using an ICE you would encounter the same problem. Best to pack your own lunch.

BackgammonPlayer | 23 dicembre 2016

SCCRENDO, I'm pretty much a vegetarian but I don't think Tesla has a duty to cater to me. There are plenty of places to pick up vegetarian food on almost any major route in the U.S. It doesn't have to be waiting for me at a SC.

SCCRENDO | 23 dicembre 2016

@art. That wasnt my point. I think Tesla needs to pick supercharger locations where they can and not cater to specific individuals. My response was more to some of the cynical responders like that dickhead Van Perley. If they have nothing to say they should ignore the post not mock vegetarianism. I have been a vegetarian in the past and generally select healthier fare. So no reason for flippant comments about people who seek healthier food.

Wilber | 23 dicembre 2016

I agree with the OP and SCREENDO that it is difficult to find healthy (and appetizing) food near most SCs simply because the Standard American Diet is so lacking. The new software update this week now provides generic info about amenities on our touch screens. But quite generic - just shows a restaurant symbol Would be much better if it listed the specific restaurants nearby. In the Model S forum others have also suggested we want more detail, so hopefully Tesla is listening and in the next update those of use who prefer NOT to eat the Standard American Diet will know if there is a decent option near a given SC. Some SCs also have groceries nearby and just a grocery cart symbol shows with latest update. Would be better if listed names of the groceries.

Bighorn | 23 dicembre 2016

Yelp works for me

SCCRENDO | 23 dicembre 2016

@wilber. +1

carlgo2 | 24 dicembre 2016

Superchargers are placed out in parking lots, not downtown or at destinations where real restaurants operate. Better find a way to deal with that. Those who can't find food in the US aren't trying very hard.

SCCRENDO | 24 dicembre 2016

@carlgo2. Thanks for the cynicism we were talking about. Some of us have been around a little longer than you and have a good understanding where Tesla places superchargers. Nobody is telling Tesla where to place superchargers. We were just asking that they provide information for many who would like to eat healthier. I would also suggest to you that the food choices in the US are a disgrace for the most part. Our obesity and diabetes rates are exploding. And indeed outside of places like California options are slightly limited. Breaking news here but US eating habits are not a shining light. We have exported our junk food to the rest of the world. So go ahead and stuff your face with junk while we get some constructive comments from people who can help.

dvsheehan | 24 dicembre 2016

When planning your trip, consult the following websites to find locations for vegan and vegetarian restaurants:
happy cow.net
raw.com
irrawady.com
vegansociety.com
farmfreshtoyou.com
and https://www.similarweb.com/top-websites/category/food-and-drink/vegetari...
This may help you locate vegan and vegetarian restaurants along your route

SCCRENDO | 24 dicembre 2016

@dvsheehan. +100
I think this is the kind of post OP was looking for.

Watt fun | 24 dicembre 2016

I live and travel with a severely affected Celiac. Not just gluten, but can't tolerate any cow or goat milk products either as the proteins are similar to wheat at surface. Not just a 'lactose' intolerance. Several other (somewhat rare/odd) food allergies too, so I get what the OP is talking about. The struggle is real, just different for different folks.

Use your smartphone to find places, and there are apps as well. dvsheehan has an excellent starter list above, and plan ahead. "Could be worse. Could be raining" is my motto.

SCCRENDO | 24 dicembre 2016

@watt. Do you have some recommendations

Watt fun | 25 dicembre 2016

Google is your friend. Well, maybe sometimes, as long as you ask the right questions. "gluten free restaurant apps" gives you lots. If you want vegan/vegetarian try looking up as well for Indian etc. It also helps to know that much Asian food can be suitable for Celiacs and non-carnivores as well. There is a food services supply company in Canada, Cara, that runs chains such as Swiss Chalet and also supply food at airports etc. They have a big multi-page guide available on request to ALL their foods served, and what possible limitations there could be with a tic-mark system for about 15-20 different factors.

Wilber | 25 dicembre 2016

Watt fun - about 8 years ago i developed lots of strange food allergies due to a course of broad spectrum antibiotics, and my limitations sound very similar to yours. In general, i choose the Asian restaurants for that reason. But, i just checked out the Swiss Chalet website and i see they have a nice allergy guide that helps identify specific menu items I can eat. Next time I'm in BC I'll check out Swiss Chalet. thanks.

Rocky_H | 3 gennaio 2017

@SCCRENDO, Quote: "@dvsheehan. +100
I think this is the kind of post OP was looking for."

I'll also give bonus points to @dvsheehan, but no, that wasn't what the OP was asking for. Those are fantastic links so someone can solve their own problems. The OP was complaining at Tesla for their Supercharger site selection, wanting them to solve the food selection problem.

KP in NPT | 3 gennaio 2017

I agree with SCCRENDO that the options are lacking due to the crappy american diet - And not much Tesla can do about that. I still have my dream of the Solar Powered Tesla Super Supercharger centers that are a lounge/coffee shop/healthy food cafe/rest area but until then....

I travel for a living and if I want to eat healthy I have to either bring my own or plan. for instance, before I supercharge on my regular commute, I stop off at a Whole Foods and make myself a healthy salad to take with me to eat in the rest area instead of being stuck with Chipotle or Sbarro. I am probably worse than most in that I basically gag at the thought of eating fast food or chain food of almost any kind. It's almost impossible to find a healthy option or even a quality ingredients option. So I bring my own, or do what Bighorn suggested and use Yelp to either see if there is anything good walking distance, or anything I can get to go before I plug in.

notblueclk | 3 gennaio 2017

@dvsheehan ... I tried HappyCow extensively. While I was able to find a number of 'destination' choices, there was nothing in walking distance to SCs along the way.

Some notes on my VA-MO trip for vegetarians/vegans

Somerset, PA - Strangely the Eat N' Park restaurant offered the best options.
Tridelphia, VW - It's a hike, but the Olive Garden is your best bet here. It's a 12 minute walk to/from the SC
Grove City, OH - No hope here, except snacks you can buy at the supermarket
Dayton, OH - Chipotle!
Indianapolis, IN - For vegetarians, the Fujiyama Steak House offer a vegetarian option, but they use egg in the fried rice, and butter in the rice and veggies. For vegans, a cheese-less pizza awaits you at the Pizza Hut
St. Charles, MO - Bean burrito (less cheese) at Taco Bell. But Dierbergs supermarket has an excellent organics section to stock up on groceries with
Rolla, MO - Strangely enough, vegans won's starve at Bandana's BBQ. The boiled peanuts, green beans, french fries, and sweet potato fries are there ... but beware the BBQ sauces, as Bandana's key flavor ingredient is anchovies

A special kudos to Lulu's Local Eatery in St. Louis for great vegan food! Though not near a SC, the Commerce Bank parking lot two blocks away has a L3 CHAdeMO charger (NRG ... but also takes credit cards). I know paying for a charge sucks, but a man can only do so many bean burritos at Taco Bell

SCCRENDO | 3 gennaio 2017

@rocky. I get the opposite impression. I thought the OP was looking for options near superchargers. Perhaps a whole foods for example a few miles away.

KP in NPT | 3 gennaio 2017

I took it to mean the sites chosen don't include good options for her diet, and the onboard app does not provide restaurant information. "but as the Supercharger network continues to expand, I've noticed that little attention appears to be given relative to the quality of food available at many locations, "

OP, have you downloaded the Superchargers app? Lists basic info like # of stalls, links to google map. I haven't used it lately so Im not sure how much info is there - it's crowd sourced, but has a place for users to enter POIs, comments, etc.

JeffreyR | 3 gennaio 2017

It seems @Gwgan's chargerville is what OP is looking for. Here is the info for Gilroy's SC site:
https://chargerville.com/charger/6378/

Pretty cool stuff for sure. I wonder if their website works in the car?

JeffreyR | 3 gennaio 2017

It seems Tesla's Supercharger list has varying degrees of details too:

https://www.tesla.com/findus/list/superchargers/United+States

aboubsps102 | 3 gennaio 2017

You don’t need to love yoga, kale or horsetail braids to enjoy vegetarian. Vegetables are our nutritional heroes: delicious, high-fibre and packed with essential vitamins and minerals. I invite you to put vegetables front and centre at mealtimes and enjoy their curative benefits with simple and easy, deliciously tasty recipes.

reed_lewis | 4 gennaio 2017

@ aboubsps102 - Sure, I will put vegetables front and center. Right behind my 12 oz steak.

Sorry, if we were meant to be vegetarians, then we would not have these wonderful teeth which are meant to rip apart meat.

I have no issue with people who chose not to eat meat, but do not attempt to convince me to do so. It won't work.

SCCRENDO | 4 gennaio 2017

@reed. Nobody is telling you what to eat. Go ahead indulge. This is a thread that is requesting some positive suggestions for those who do not want to coat their arteries with 12 oz steaks. People with your dietary habits are well accounted for all over the US. It is people who wish to live healthier that need some assistance in finding places to eat near superchargers.

lilbean | 4 gennaio 2017

You may not have a choice in the future. Red meat is not a sustainable food source.

notblueclk | 4 gennaio 2017

@ mp1156 - Yes, I tried the Superchargers app, and I admit I'm as bad as others in not participating with these.

Let me be clear about my thinking on this post. As EV owners, charging our vehicles has become part of our routine. Supercharging is intended to allow us to make long distance journeys, but at current battery charging technology, we get to spend 30-40 minutes every 150 miles we travel. Perhaps as Supercharging rates continue to increase and our time at Superchargers decreases, this will be less of an issue, as meals and charging stops re-separate.

But for now, the amount of time it takes to charge at a Supercharger makes it such that I would prefer a single stop to do both. As a vegetarian (I follow a vegan diet, but I'm not what you would consider a philosophical vegan ... I still wear leather, etc), I'm pointing out that Supercharger locations do not consider the quality of food offered near them. But I give credit to places like Bandana's BBQ in Rolla, MO, where in talking to the manager, he said he would pass the suggestion of offering a vegan option on the menu, as many Tesla owners are vegetarian/vegan.

While I praise the open efforts of apps and websites in working on trip planning and information, it is discouraging that we are all running around with online vehicles and 17" touch displays, and yet this information and other useful apps elude us. It would be a great day when I could approach a Supercharger, know in advance the available stalls (and maybe even reserve one), know that there is a Starbucks nearby and even have an order sent in for a grande soy latte.

I think that the ideal in the long run is that Supercharging will be fast, like the 350kW which is nearly three times faster than current Superchargers, thus making a Supercharger stop only 10 minutes. But as we go around in our lives, L1/L2 chargers (in a real ideal world ... wireless charging) will become more abundant where we live, work, travel, and commerce. But I feel that we equally need to integrated apps and data (with appropriate voice interfaces to allow hands-off access) to take advantage of this

High Plains Drifter | 5 gennaio 2017

Super Charger locations are usually sponsored by a local business in hopes of attracting client patronage. Tesla owners represent less than 1% of the driving population. And vegetarian Tesla owners are a minute percentage of that 1%. So the numbers alone would deter any Kale vending business from investing any GREEN.

Earl and Nagin ... | 5 gennaio 2017

How sustainable is Kale (and don't even get me started on organic foods)? I've never seen it canned or frozen. This means it probably relies on the availability of cheap fuel to quickly transport it from farms in warm climates to consumers in cold ones or it requires expensive greenhouses to grow it in the winter.
I think you'll find that the traditional (pre-Interstate Highway system) diets in areas reflects the kinds of food that can sustainably support the population there. This is a reason we find high meat and canned food diets among the modest income population in extremely cold places - its affordable and can be counted on in winter.
If you're going to travel into those areas, you'll need to expect to have to live a little like the locals do or bring your luxuries with you.

bigd | 5 gennaio 2017

Earl and Nagin "If you're going to travel into those areas, you'll need to expect to have to live a little like the locals do or bring your luxuries with you." Excellent point!!!