We’ve all had that moment in a restaurant when we’ve asked if a menu item could be made without the meat, dairy, etc – almost always shortly followed by our apology for being “so difficult.” More times than not, the response is a simple “sure, no problem!” Sometimes, it’s “I’m not sure, I’ll ask the cook.” And then of course there’s the occasional blank stare and plain old “no.” The latter is not typical in Philly – as it’s one of the most vegan friendly cities in the country.
What can be even more frustrating at times is when the meat/dairy is removed from the dish and you’re still charged the same absurd price. WHY would lobster mac and cheese sans lobster still be charged at $22?! Pizza without cheese.. still $15.
The point of this is that it makes it very difficult, and many times not worth it, to dine at places that have few plant-based options; but there aren’t always full vegan or vegetarian dining options nearby. That’s why I feel victorious when a place that is a predominately traditional Italian pizzeria creates a full separate vegan menu!
Uncle Oogie’s, which has a few locations in South Philly and Sea Isle City, NJ, has a full vegan menu with an impressive pizza selection, seitan wings, buffalo chicken cheese steak, and stromboli.
Uncle Oogie’s had been a go-to for Missy’s family for years as a quick takeout option while on their annual vacation to Sea Isle, NJ. Figuring that we only had the option of pizza or.. pizza, we didn’t really take a hard look at the menu. Until we did. That’s when we stumbled upon the gem of a vegan menu on their website and a whole new world opened up.
Without another thought, we dished the pizza and both ordered the vegan wings with ranch (not vegan). As you can see, they were not stingy with their serving size. I ate every single wing, AND THEN finished Missy’s (typical). They were the perfect ratio of crunch, meaty texture, and flavorful sauce.
Paired with Victory Hop Devil and a view of the ocean made for no complaints from me that night.