Yo Tea Go & More (Clovis, NM)

Yo Tea Go & More restaurant

Yo Tea Go & More in Clovis, NM (Curry County) is like a Yogurtland and teahouse combined. They give out $5 gift cards on Facebook for their “Tuesday Tea Trivia” promotion so you can try it out for free. They also have little cups so you can sample different teas.

Georgia Peach granita with pecans and cherries.

I got a peach flavored dairy free frozen dessert (“granita”) and topped it with pecans, almonds, peanuts, cherries, and raspberries. Pretty good. I also tried a couple unsweetened iced tea samples. Also good.

The restaurant is spacious too.

Dairy free.

 

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Apps, Restaurant Rewards, & Referrals Updates (Plus Some Restaurant Reviews)

If you read here about a sign up freebie or birthday freebie or special bonus, make sure to check the web page to see that it is still being offered.

Native Foods 

Inside a Native Foods Café restaurant in San Diego.

Back in February, Native Foods launched a new app and offered a $5 freebie for downloading (good for 2 weeks from the date you sign up.) With the $5 freebie I got the oatmeal crème pie and potato salad side to go for $1.39 out of pocket. I decided to eat half of the oatmeal crème pie one evening and the other half the next, but it ended up being 2/3 then 1/3 because it’s too delicious to stop eating!

When you claim your Native Foods reward you get a redemption code and QR code.  The cashier said I could not use the redemption code, just scan the QR code. (But you should be able to do either way.)

Use my code JillBalla3501 or click the referral link from your mobile device to earn extra points. Native Foods is in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, Palm Springs, Colorado, Oregon, & Chicago. Gosh, I wish it was in the High Plains too!

The Veggie Grill app needs to be updated.  I have a new Invite Code now: JillB7768.  There is still a $5 off freebie for those who haven’t joined yet.  Locations: California, Illinois, Oregon, Washington. Gosh, I wish there was one on the High Plains!

Hey, look at the Veggie Grill in La Jolla!

Dunkin’ Donuts uses Almond Breeze in the iced mocha latte upon request

Dunkin’ Donuts

When you join Dunkin’ Donuts DD Perks, you get a Free Beverage Reward.  After you sign up, you have about three (3) months to claim your free vegan beverage.

However, the catch is that you have to purchase a $2 gift card and add it to your account (although, sometimes there is a promo to get a free $5 if you add $10).  For some reason I couldn’t use my reward and my gift card at the register in the same transaction. I don’t know if that was because the cashier was confused or you can only use the gift card online for pickup (which I did later.)  Anyway, I got a large Vegan Iced Mocha Latte with almond milk.  $4.19 of the price was free, but there was a .25 surcharge for the almond milk that wasn’t free.  This PETA article tells you which food items are vegan.

Here’s what DD Perks tells you about the freebie beverage: “A Free Beverage in any size of your choice includes any iced or hot coffee, tea or latte, hot chocolate or Coolatta®. All cooler beverages are excluded.”

Dosh is a cool cashback app. When you sign up and link a credit card you get a $5 cashback freebie. When you book your first hotel through the app you get a $25 bonus plus regular cashback.  Use my referral code.

“$15+ million cash back since April ’17” – Dosh

Johnny Rockets

If you join the Johnny Rockets EClub, you will get a coupon for a free vegan black bean burger with the purchase of “an entrée and a drink” (means you order two Gardein vegan burgers, fries, and a beverage, then one of the vegan burgers will be free; a $6.69 value.) The coupon is good starting the day after you sign up and then for two (2) weeks.  Lewis and I went to the one at the Opry Mills Mall because I won a trip to Nashville. After we ate the vegan burgers, J.D. Haas swung by wearing his Adelaide, Australia shirt and I told him about the vegan burger deal. He said, “I haven’t eaten meat since 1977.”

Bitmo

The sign-up freebie is a $5 gift card through the app.  I’m actually not sure if you have to be referred to get it or you just get it when you sign up.  The app says to “invite friends” who will get a “free gift card upon sign up.”  If you want me to send you an invite, I’ll need your mobile number.  You can swap the card you get for a different one.  For example, I got a Panera card and swapped it for Chipotle. I then combined the $5 Chipotle card with Chipotle’s offer for freebie chips and guac (with a purchase) for signing up for the app. (The Chipotle deal was a limited time offer. They don’t seem to have a sign-up offer now, but will supposedly “launch a long-awaited loyalty program in 2019,” according to Reuters.)

Door Dash is a web page for ordering food. I decided to try it from the Hotel Preston in Nashville because I had a $15 promotional credit in my account that I had never used.  I ordered from The Wild Cow.  The menu didn’t say if all the items were vegan (just specific ingredients), so I just presumed they were. I chose Chipotle Seitan Tacos ($11.25) with the following specifications:

Tortilla Choice: Flour

The avocado was missing from these Chipotle Seitan Tacos from The Wild Cow.

Side Choice: Pineapple Cole Slaw (Gluten-Free)

Sour Cream Addition: Vegan Sour Cream

Avocado Addition: Avocado

The tacos were great, but the avocado addition that I paid for was not on the tacos.  Also, no utensils were included in the bag.

Lewis chose Peanut Tempeh Tacos ($11.00) with the following specifications:

Tortilla Choice: Corn Tortilla

Side Choice: Pineapple Cole Slaw (Gluten-Free)

Avocado Addition: Avocado

He said they were good.

We also got Spinach & Artichoke Dip ($7.25), which was pretty good, but we had to get utensils from the hotel’s restaurant in order to eat it.  Here’s the breakdown of the cost:

Subtotal: $29.50

Tax: $2.73

Delivery: $3.99

Service fee: $2.95 (This fee was hidden, so I’m not sure if there was an option to delete it because I didn’t even see it before placing the order.)

Dasher Tip: $2.00

Discount: -$15.00

Total: $26.17

So, as you can see, the $15 discount mostly just covered the extra charges rather than the food. Now the referral discount is $7, so if you want to try it here’s my referral code.  If you are not planning on ordering right away you may want to wait and see if there’s another promo making it $15 instead of $7. Who knows.

An example of getting cash back on vegan items from Checkout 51.

Checkout 51 is a cashback program that is both an app and web page. You can potentially save money on vegan items.  I tested it and it worked, but I’d have to experiment with it more to see if it really saves the consumer money.  It probably depends on whether the vegan items you want to get are easy to find and a good price to begin with.  The stores I shopped at did not have the vegan varieties that they would have had in different locations.  Make sure to read the terms of each item you are interested in.  Once you have $20 cashback in your account you can request the money.  I have $4 now for purchasing apples, canned beans, crackers, and Sapporo beer.

Denny’s Build Your Own Vegan Burger: I finally tried the vegan burger at Denny’s because a sweepstakes gave out a BOGO coupon (a $9.39 value.) (It wasn’t a prize, just a freebie. My prize was free coffee, but I didn’t use the coupon because the terms only allowed one coupon per visit.) The first time I was going to use the coupon I called the Denny’s in Clovis, NM to ask if they had the vegan burger and they were all sold out.  That should be a hint to restaurants that no sane person wants a burger made of murdered creatures.  Ironically, the menu highlighted “100% Beef Burgers” in big bold letters and the “veggie patty” option was disclosed in fine print. So, it’s interesting that they sell out of the veggie patty anyway. Think how many clueless people might opt to order the veggie patty if it jumped out at them on the menu.

Build Your Own Vegan Burger at Denny’s (one free with BOGO coupon)

Anyway, the burger is pretty good. When I asked the waitress which bun was vegan and if the bourbon sauce was vegan, she sent over another employee who explained that they were vegan, but manufactured in facilities that manufacture animal products. Lewis and I were like, “We want to order now!”

O-Live: Referral Program: Maybe Get Some Free Olive Oil

If you use my referral link, maybe we can earn rewards:

Rewards. Upon referring 1 friend, OLISUR INC. disperses one PDF file of the O-Live &Co. Cookbook. Upon referring 5 friends, OLISUR INC. disperses one discount code valid for 20% off any purchase made on the website, https://us.o-liveandco.com/. This code will be sent via email after the campaign concludes. Upon referring 15 friends, OLISUR INC. disperses one code valid for a free bottle of olive oil purchased from the website, https://us.o-liveandco.com/. Shipping fees may still apply. This code will be sent via email after the campaign concludes. Upon referring 20 friends, you receive one raffle entry into a drawing for the prize of a trip to Chile. After referring 20 friends total, every 10 additional friends will earn you one additional raffle entry.

The Viral Referral Contest will end in the first week of October 2018. OLISUR INC. will announce the winner on October 6th, 2018.

PowToken: Recently I was listening to a podcast called Sordid Details to monitor for shit talking against my hero (the hosts were totally shit talking, damn them), but they were also talking about Bitcoin and trying to make sense of it.  I can tell you I don’t know squat about it. I only own some POW ‘lite’ because it was a freebie:

IT’S LIKE FREE BITCOIN….

To claim your free POW ‘lite’ simply sign-in using your Facebook or Twitter account (you can make a separate claim from each!) Next claim: 13,549 POW ‘lite’, worth $0.20

Here’s my referral code, but you’ll have to try it later because:

POW dev team has made the decision today to temporarily pause the development of our “bridge” functionality in order to address core architectural weaknesses to the POWtoken.com site and service. All access and functionality has been suspended for a period of no less than six weeks, in order to allow this to take place. (Facebook, April 18, 2018)

Microventures: Last year Microventures offered an opportunity to invest in a vegan enterprise, a Plant Power Fast Food franchise. Gosh, I wish someone would open one on the High Plains!  So, anyway, keep checking to see if they have any future opportunities to own a piece of the vegan rock.  (Like, maybe I’ll start a truck stop franchise on the High Plains!) If you find an investment opportunity you like, you can use my referral link to get a free investment credit!  Whoa, more vegan rock for free!

Rewards I Haven’t Tested

Now that I live in an isolated area I won’t be able to test a lot of apps and restaurant rewards unless I travel or something.  So if you want to test any restaurant rewards and apps to see if you can score vegan freebies, go ahead and then report back with your referral code.  I’ll use it whenever the opportunity arises.  Make note of sign-up freebies and birthday freebies and keep checking for changes and updates on the menus and in the offers.

California Pizza Kitchen

Purportedly you get a free Small Plate when you sign up, which can be “white corn guacamole and chips” according to this Peta2 article. But according to the article nothing from the dessert menu is vegan, so your birthday freebie will be wasted.

Noon Mediterranean restaurants are in Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas.  According to Happy Cow, they have “veg-options.”  Here’s what the Noon Mediterranean web page says:

GET A FREE PITA, SALAD OR BOWL.*

DOWNLOAD OUR APP. EARN REWARDS. ORDER ONLINE.

*Free Entree Only Applies For First Time Users. Will Receive Link To Claim Entrée After Email Verification.  Please Allow Up To 90 Minutes For Processing.

This Is Your Chance To Get Free Food And Prizes Doing The Thing You Love — Eating Noon Mediterranean.

Receive a free entree just for signing up* and chips and hummus on your birthday.

 

 

Luna Grill: They Need Vegan Bread, Desserts, and Beyond Burger!

House salad with falafel was my go-to freebie lunch from Luna Grill.

Well, it was great winning lots of gift certificates to the Luna Grill on the radio in San Diego, but now I don’t live near one, so goodbye to free house salads with falafel for awhile. They even gave out lots of freebie coupons in the Get 1 Free publication when they had a grand opening in Scripps Ranch.  They also had a sign-up freebie shareable for joining LUNATIC RewardsTM, as I described in a previous post.  I presume this freebie is still offered as the Rewards page refers to the “Free Shareable,” but sometimes sign-up freebies are limited time promotions (like with Chipotle, for example.)

If you haven’t done so recently, the LUNATIC RewardsTM app probably needs an update.  I recently earned 25 BONUS points for inviting myself.  Here is my invite code: JillBa4860

I want to thank the cool people who used my invite code so I could get free veggie kabobs.  If you get one for making a referral make note that the code you get is for the a la carte veggie kabob rather than the entrée one (the cashier may get confused if you just say “veggie kabob.”)

I do, however, think they are insane to not have vegan bread.  Their pita has dairy and their multigrain flatbread (lavash) contains honey.  As I mentioned before, honey has been shown to have weed killer in it.

At least, according to their To Go Menu, Luna Grill uses “project verified, non-GMO oil that is free of trans-fat and soy” to make their “marinades, dressings and fried items.”  They also started promoting Meatless Mondays (murder free Mondays.)

Meat eater wasted salad in Lake Forest, CA.

On one visit, the employee, Samuel, asked me if I wanted dessert.  I replied, “No; it sucks that your desserts aren’t vegan.”

He said, “We can only do so much.”

I looked at the dessert case, noticing that those cupcakes could easily be made vegan and said, “Make them vegan!”  When I received a menu for Fresh Brothers (Pizza · Salad · Wings) I noticed their desserts were vegan!  So there’s no excuse for a restaurant’s desserts to not be vegan. And what sucks is that the birthday freebie from the Lunatics app isn’t vegan!

Oh, and then the dude who sat near me didn’t eat all the dead chicken from his plate, which means that he probably doesn’t really care for meat.  Otherwise, why not save it instead of wasting “food”?

I’ve seen this dog at the Luna Grill in Torrey Highlands on more than one occasion.

Recent e-mails in April 2018 announced the Beyond Burger. (Plant based burger, but not offered at the Camino del Sur location, and also, “Not able to prepare vegan style.” WTF? “The revolutionary plant-based burger prepared with grilled onions, lettuce, tomato and spicy feta.” A dairy product?)

So, one of Luna Grill’s problems is that they offer stuff that should be vegan, but for some reason they make it not vegan. What is that about?

Do you like her shorts?

2 Restaurants in La Mesa, CA (San Diego County)

Banbu Sushi Bar & Grill

Banbu Sushi is by Sammy’s Woodfired Pizza

Located in Grossmont Trolley Center where motorists are directed to park in the Pravada garage, which is spacious.

Vegan miso ramen

The good news is that they have a couple vegan entrees on the menu.  I got the vegan miso ramen.  I picked out the mushrooms and saved them for my dog.  The portion was big enough that I saved some for the next day.

The bad news is that the place is smelly when you go in because they’re making stuff out of eels. Ewwww! That’s why you’ll need a strong drink. I got the blue diamond martini.  (The online menu doesn’t list the drinks so now I have no idea if the alcohol was vegan friendly.)  To start I got a house salad with vinegar & oil (because their dressing isn’t vegan.)  The waitress tried to take the vinegar and oil before I was done using them, but luckily I stopped her because I saved the olive oil with the mushrooms for my dog.

House salad

The crazy thing is this place is popular.  I went in for an early lunch and it was already busy.  A pair of innocent sailors sat by me, Clark (chick) and Zhao (dude).  I kept looking at them to see if they had a point of view, but they just didn’t.  After they were done with their non-vegan food, four fat nurses from Kaiser Permanente took their place.

 

Hooley’s

Hooley’s in Grossmont Center

Located in Grossmont Center near Macy’s.  I know I reviewed this one before, but I figured my further research required me to update.  Sadly, they haven’t updated their menu with vegan options. So, again I got the grilled zucchini tacos specially prepared to be vegan.  I got the carrot sticks as a side because none of the other sides were vegan (not even the beans!)  So, last time I got a salad which was purportedly vegan, but now it’s not.  Anyway, the salsa was too hot which caused me to eat the carrots fast like Bugs Bunny.  I also got the whiskey sour with Jameson again. However, my gift certificate had enough for me to order something else so I got a baked potato and a side of avocado.  I seasoned them with salt, pepper, and malt vinegar, which was really good and a better option than the grilled zucchini tacos, in my opinion!  They need to update their menu, however, to reflect a more evolved age.

Now I almost forgot to mention that a Facebook troll purports to reside in La Mesa.  This person is threatened by anti-natalists. I figure I should just copy and paste the definition of antinatalism so that anyone can see it’s nothing to feel insecure about!

Antinatalism

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Antinatalism, or anti-natalism, is a philosophical position that assigns a negative value to birth. Antinatalists argue that people should refrain from procreation because it is immoral. In scholarly and in literary writings, various ethical foundations have been adduced for antinatalism.[1] Some of the earliest surviving formulations of the idea that it would be better not to have been born come from ancient Greece.[2] The term “antinatalism” is in opposition to the term “natalism” or “pro-natalism”, and was used probably for the first time as the name of the position by Théophile de Giraud (born 1968) in his book L’art de guillotiner les procréateurs: Manifeste anti-nataliste.[3]

Kung Fu Tea: Find a Freebie Vegan Beverage

 

Kung Fu Tea in San Diego

I’m doing an entire blog post based on one freebie beverage (or $0.58 in my case) from Kung Fu Tea because I found the app and menu to be a little more complicated than usual, so why not help others gain clarity? (I’m so generous.)

App: The app is run by Level Up, the same company that does the Veggie Grill rewards app (I would like to thank the sweet people who used my referral link), but I found I had to enter my credit card before the QR Code would show up (which I didn’t need to do for Veggie Grill, however, they are launching a “new VG Rewards app” soon.)  I then did a screenshot of the QR Code and printed it out because I’m not the type of person who likes to whip out my phone. And besides, sometimes you have to change the brightness on your phone to 100% before you can scan it off your phone.  So when you sign up for Kung Fu Tea Rewards you will get a $4.00 credit, which will say: “Free drink (up to $4) on first purchase.”  Their FAQ is not clear on how long you have to use it.

Another way to be referred, apparently

Menu: Currently, their Nutrition page only refers to calories, sugar-level, gluten, and caffeine. I presume they will update this information eventually based on consumer demand. Until then I would just use best judgment and avoid anything that sounds like it has dairy, honey, gelatin, etc.  I tried the mango slush, which was purportedly vegan according to the cashier. Delish. I owed $0.58 after the freebie $4 was applied.

Menu at Kung Fu Tea

Spaghetti at House of Bites – Miramar (San Diego)

House of Bites in Miramar.

Back in October, Get 1 Free Deals gave out freebie $20 vouchers. I hope vegans were smart enough to grab theirs.  I got one to use at a fast casual restaurant in Miramar, House of Bites. It’s in the Miramar Village Plaza north of the US Marine Corps Air Station (there would be no war if not for them.)

Fine print from the House of Bites voucher.

The good news is that you can order their spaghetti marinara without cheese, the salad without cheese (the Italian dressing and balsamic vinaigrette are purportedly vegan friendly too), and bread without butter.  So, it’s a good deal when you get a free $20. I suppose you could purchase a voucher too and it would still be a good deal if you used a promo code, since two (2) spaghetti entrees pre-tax totals less than $20.  However, the fine print on the voucher doesn’t say anything about alcohol not counting towards the $20, but the owner told me that’s how it is, so make note of that. The voucher does say, however, “Tax and Gratuity are not included.”

Spaghetti marinara and bread.

Funny thing, I saved the red onions from my salad in a container and the owner wondered why I was doing that. I said I was going to use them later and he offered to fill up the container with more. The next day I made a vegan-version of Herbie’s Herbed Potato casserole because the most difficult prep work was done for me already. And I must say I’m super impressed that cool Morrissey doesn’t like onions. (Chrissy Iley, Morrissey, Sunday Times Magazine, Nov. 26, 2017)

Make sure to do the #VeganChalkChallenge everywhere you go because an idiot on #NextDoor hates it.

 

 

 

Traveling on the Road? Here are 10 Fast Food Restaurants With Vegan Meal Options (Most Have Drive-Throughs!)

I usually get a vegan side salad from McDeaths in airports with the gift card I won.
Watch out for Sonic Drive-In restaurants in California that refuse to comply with state gift card law even though they say they do: “Except as required by applicable law, your My SONIC card may not be applied as payment to any account or redeemed for cash. ” Their manager could not understand that language. Class action lawsuit anyone?

Lazy Girl Vegan

On the Road? Here are 10 Fast Food Restaurants With Vegan Options (Most Have Drive-Throughs!)

Fast food is not be the healthiest option on the planet, but hey, sometimes you’re on the road (like during this holiday season!) and the only thing in sight is an exit with a measly gas station and a few good ole’ American drive-thurs. Luckily, vegans can find a few things.

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