Photo by Laura Hayes

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The Dish: Veggie Steak & Cheese Sandwich

Where to Get It: The Greek Spot, 2017 11th St. NW

Price: $9.75

What It Is: A certain stigma surrounds the “fake meat” used in vegan or vegetarian meals. In defense of herbivores everywhere, know that this stigma is bullshit. Sure, “fake meat” may have been a gross, chemically concocted semblance of food in the ’80s and ’90s, but today that’s not the case. In fact, the variety of “fake meat” is so great that a vegetarian with a hankering for just about any type of meat-centric dish need not look far. Such is the scenario at The Greek Spot in the U Street NW corridor, which offers perhaps the finest veggie steak & cheese sandwich my mouth has ever encountered. Soy strips are grilled to perfection and topped with grilled onions, fresh lettuce, tomato, hot peppers, American cheese, and mayonnaise. Eating vegetarian doesn’t always mean eating healthy. 

The Story: The Greek Spot first opened its doors in 2006 and quickly established itself as a staple of the nrighborhood, with its fast-casual, homestyle take on classic Greek fare like pastichio, moussaka, and gyros. But what’s kept The Greek Spot a go-to, er, spot after all these years is its emphasis on fresh, healthy ingredients, which includes a wide selection of options for vegetarian and vegan diners. They make cheap, fresh veg options a priority rather than afterthought.

Why Even Meat Eaters Will Like It: Meat eaters will be skeptical of any plant-based ingredient posing as meat. If they can get that idea out of their heads, they’ll find a hearty sandwich full of smoky, flavorful soy protein.