Recode co-founder Adam Savage has been eating at restaurants since he was a teenager.
Now he’s one of the most popular restaurant guests in the country.
He’s not alone: According to a study by the Restaurant Association of America, he has the largest customer base of any restaurant guest.
The study found that out of more than 9 million restaurant customers, he had the highest average rating for his service and food quality.
So, how did Savage manage to be the most liked person at a restaurant?
He was a vegetarian.
“Vegetarian is not a dietary restriction,” Savage says.
“But there is a distinction between vegans and vegetarians.
There are people who can eat meat, and there are people that can’t.”
Savage is a vegan, and he says he’s learned a lot from the experiences he’s had in the restaurant industry.
“It’s made me appreciate the food I eat,” he says.
But his personal beliefs have come in handy in other ways.
For one, he’s been able to travel around the world and meet other people who are also vegan.
“I know from my travels that most people have a very narrow definition of what is vegan, but for me, I’m a vegan,” Savage explains.
“You just can’t define it.
I’m not saying you have to be a vegetarian, or even a vegan.
It just doesn’t make sense to me.
And that’s a really valuable experience to have.”
The best restaurants in America are still largely owned by large corporations.
But some of those companies are looking to diversify their menus to include more diverse food choices.
“There’s a new wave of restaurant owners who are not just trying to make money, but they’re also trying to change the world,” Savage said.
“If you’re an African American, you’re not going to be able to find a good steak at the best steakhouse.
You’re not gonna be able access an authentic American steak.
So the only thing that can be served in the kitchen of a new restaurant is something that can satisfy both sides of that.”
And that means food that is a bit different from the corporate food you’re used to eating in your local restaurant.
“For example, if you’ve never had a steak, and you go to your local grocery store, and they’re not stocked with that particular brand, then you might not like that particular steak,” Savage explained.
“And it’s not necessarily that a restaurant owner can’t do the best thing, but I think that’s going to take a little bit of time.
I think it’s going the wrong direction.”
That may be a little frustrating to people who may be used to seeing a menu that includes meat, but it’s important to realize that there are more than just the fast food restaurants that cater to vegetarians, says Jennifer Cogdell, a food critic and the author of the blog The Vegetarian Diaries.
“These restaurants, and the restaurants that are coming out of this movement, are really catering to the whole person,” she said.
That’s why, for example, she’s a big fan of the Whole Foods Market, which recently opened in Portland, Oregon.
The Whole Foods store has a vegan menu, and it’s one that’s also full of interesting vegan offerings, including meatballs, kale chips, and a variety of other dishes.
Coggell said that’s exactly what people need to keep in mind when they’re dining out.
“The only time people need any of these dishes is when they want a meatless meal and it can’t be found in a Whole Foods or a Safeway or a Chipotle or a KFC,” she says.
Cogsell says it’s good to understand that people will come to different places for different reasons.
“When you’re looking at the meat-centric menus of a lot of the restaurants, they’re really catering for a certain type of consumer,” she explained.
For example, Cogsell has heard a lot about Chipotle, which started with a meat-based menu.
“They had a vegetarian-centric menu,” she noted.
“Then they started to expand their menu to include meat, then they expanded their menu, including beef, and now they’re finally adding veggie options.”
That’s a trend that’s picking up steam, as well.
Earlier this year, Wendy’s introduced a vegan version of its breakfast menu.
And this year Wendy’s will be expanding its vegetarian menu to a wide variety of options.
But Savage says there’s still room for more food choices, even if they don’t cater to every palate.
“Some people are going to want more meat than they can get from a Whole Food,” he said.
But when it comes to a healthy, satisfying meal, it’s up to the eater to find the right balance.
“As much as we might want to get away from the meat, we still need to eat vegetables, so the other side of the coin is eating whole foods,” Savage added. And even