Friday, October 26, 2012


We arrived in Boston this afternoon for a weekend of exhibiting at the Boston Vegetarian Food Festival and as soon as we got off the plane, we were ready to eat. We headed to Allston, parked the car, and were walking into Peace o' Pie when we noticed FoMu, a non-dairy ice cream shop! We peeked at their menu in the front window and I was initially a little discouraged that their hard-packed ice cream was all coconut-based (I'm allergic). However, my partner was quick to point out that they had soy soft serve!

We went over to Peace o' Pie, had a salad and a calzone, and popped back into FoMu. This was apparently a popular routine, as we saw a number of other people starting with pizza and ending up with vegan ice cream. Love it!

All of the allergens at FoMu are really clearly labeled, so that makes ordering easy. The soy flavors of the day at FoMu were chocolate and peanut butter, so OF COURSE I got swirl. I topped mine off with crumbled chocolate cookie and it was DELICIOUS! My partner got some pistachio hard-packed on a cone which he also seemed to enjoy. Super highly recommended the next time you're in Allston, MA!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Viva Herbals

I really love Viva Herbals Pizzeria in New York City. When I stay in NY, I'm alway somewhere in the vicinity of it and they always have vegan slices affordably priced and ready to go! My favorite is the pictured slice covered in all things green. There is no tomato sauce on this slice, only a nut-free pesto. So green and delicious!

In addition to an awaiting plethora of vegan slices that they reheat in the oven for you before serving, there are also vegan garlic knots, soups, drinks, and a cooler full of sweets from Vegan Treats.

I will admit that many times in the past, I have been leaving dinner with friends and walking back to our hotel with my partner and we've stopped and picked up a slice from Viva Herbals to eat in the hotel room. It's kind of a tradition. When I was recently in NY, I wasn't eating quite that indulgently, but I did stop by and get this green slice and a kombucha for dinner one night.

At any rate, I really recommend Viva Herbals! Their ingredients are fresh-tasting and they have a variety of vegan pies ready to go. Since it's by the slice you can try a few different varieties if you're hungry (or dining with a friend).

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

The Herbivore Clothing Company

How do I love the Herbivore Clothing Company? Let me count the ways:

1. They make awesome, animal-loving designs.
2. They source high-quality, sweatshop free shirts to print on.
3. They carry other brands that are animal-friendly, high-quality, and sweatshop-free.
4. They have a really cute store in Portland.
5. I love wearing their stuff in the airport when I'm in transit because then lots and lots of people from all over see these messages.
6. I love love love that little piggie on my Bacon Had A Mom shirt. He so did.
7. They are generous and do awesome things to raise money for animal rights groups.
8. They are all around good dudes.

Herbivore had a break-in this week and are having a sale to help raise money to replace the glass in their front door, which was smashed. The code "brokenglass" at checkout will get you 10% off in their online store until tomorrow. I picked up a new laptop-sized purse because my current one has an actual hole worn through it (hoping it will become a Vegan Thing I Like) and would have gotten more if I had the cash!

Umpqua Oats

Being at the airport makes me SO hungry. I don't know why this is, but I think it's just that flying is less nauseating when you have had something to eat. So, I was really excited when I found these Umpqua Oats available for sale in a bookstore cafe at Midway Airport in Chicago. They are super simple, no sweetener, and delicious! The staff at the cafe added hot water and I added a cut up banana and this was a great travel meal. It also passed the "not stinky" test, which I think that ALL travel food should adhere to lest you gross out your fellow travelers with your food smells.

While I probably wouldn't buy these for home due to all of the excess packaging waste that creates, I would definitely buy them again while I was on the go. I believe I have seen them in other airports, as well, so keep your eyes peeled!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Columbia Gorge Bottled Juice

Oh heck yes. Columbia Gorge is FINALLY distributed in the Midwest and I can buy it at Whole Foods to my heart's content. Columbia Gorge makes delicious juices which are made from real juice and devoid of my all-time least favorite juice additive: "Natural" Flavors (because they consist of nothing necessarily actually natural or even defined as anything specific).

I love Columbia Gorge's "real" juice flavors like the pictured Carrot Beet Celery which they present as-is without the need for adding something severely sweet. The Meyer Ginger Lemonade with Cayenne is super awesome for fighting a sore throat and is just the right balance of spicy and sweet. I also like the (un-pictured) Vita Sea mix with contains fruit puree and sea veggies. I have yet to try a flavor from Columbia Gorge that I don't like.

At any rate, I really recommend this stuff and you should definitely choose it if you see it in the store. AND if you start to get that scratchy "getting sick" feeling in your throat, stop and pick up at Meyer Ginger Lemonade immediately!

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Blackbird Pizzeria

Okay, so I have to really really apologize that the only photos that I have from Blackbird Pizzeria are of half-eaten food, but holy cow, this place is good. Back in June, we were traveling the East Coast for work and my birthday coincided with our visit to Philadelphia. I also lived in Philadelphia years ago and still have some friends out there, so I decided to have a birthday party! At Blackbird! With pizza and delicious cake!

Since we are friends with Mark, Blackbird's owner and chef extraordinaire, he kindly welcomed us with open arms. Our little party had a few pizzas (the Yukon with salty, thin-sliced potato is pictured along with what I believe is a custom pizza), sandwiches (they make a great Seitan Cheesesteak!), some experimental "wings" (also pictured), and an amazing "Oreo" (they were 365 brand) cake that Mark made just for the occasion! Seriously, how lucky am I??

A few of my friends who came out were not vegan, but had no complaints nor any idea that vegan food could be so tasty, so Blackbird was a big hit with everyone. Blackbird is located in the former Gianna's location off South Street and is doing vegan food way better (and for real this time)! If you are in Philadelphia, you MUST go! Also, I've gotta recommend going with a group so that you can try a little bit of everything. You will not be disappointed.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Rice Dream Mint Cookie Pies

Today's Thing I Like are Rice Dream Mint Cookie Pies! Oh man, I have been eating these things for probably nearly a decade and they are still a great go-to sweet snack. They are always something bought and eaten on the spot, never something that I buy and take home for later. In fact, back in the olden days when I lived further from a Whole Foods than was convenient, I would do my shopping there once a month and eat one of these babies in the car on the way home. These come in other flavors, but the mint is the clear winner. Paired with the two oatmeal cookies and all covered in chocolate, you can't go wrong. I only eat a couple of these a year, but foods like this are so much better in moderation!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Garden-Fresh Tomatoes

Okay, so today's Vegan Thing I Like is not a product or a restaurant or a person or a location, but it is something that I Like a lot: Tomatoes fresh from my own garden!

Generally speaking, my method of gardening is the following: Put stuff in the ground, water it, and hope for the best! This year, I planted everything into the garden straight from seeds actually kind of late in the season, but woah! The tomatoes really took off this year into giant bushes. (I also had cucumbers in abundance and even a few ears of corn.)

Honestly, one of my favorite indulgences these days is to stand in the garden eating delicious cherry tomatoes right off the plant. Of course, never far away is my sweet Maizy (you can see her lurking photo) who probably likes garden tomatoes even more than I do! I will definitely miss this when the winter hits!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Tutti Frutti Soy Frozen Yogurt

I recently found myself in Baltimore for Natural Products Expo East with some of the crew from work, as we were there exhibiting. One night after the convention was over, we decided to treat ourselves to Tutti Frutti, a vegan frozen yogurt store! Tutti Frutti has a few different vegan (soy) frozen yogurt flavors to choose from and TONS of toppings. The people working were also really nice in looking up the ingredients to things like their chocolate sauce and chocolate chips (mostly high fructose corn syrup on that first one, so you're technically in the clear, but I don't recommend laying it on too thick!). They do have a wide variety of toppings including fruit, candies, cookies (Oreos were an option), nuts, and sauces. I tried to lean towards the fruit side with my sundae. You pay by the pound, which is something I'd never experienced with a dessert food, everyone got to make their own personalized concoction (you can even swirl flavors of yogurt), and you even get to pick from multiple spoon colors. I wouldn't say that the yogurt itself was mind-blowing in any way, though it was good, but the experience of going to a place like this is something that is not often available for vegans, so I thought it was definitely worth a visit!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Lou Malnati's Chicago-style Pizza

So, I live in Chicago. I'm not from Chicago originally, but now that I'm here, there's this whole "Chicago-style Deep Dish" thing and, don't you know it, there's currently no restaurant that I know of in the city making a vegan Chicago-style deep dish with a cheese alternative. Well, don't worry about that! You can get deep dish that is completely amazing without the cheese and Lou Malnati's will make it for you. We recently had out of town guests visiting (from Portland!) and knew that they had to try this local cuisine. There are a few things to look out for when ordering from Lou's, like that their usual pizza spinach is soaked in butter, but they also have a fresh version for the salads that they can substitute. You have to be pretty clear, but their dough is vegan and this pizza is worth the effort. We had ours with spinach, olives, and hot giardinera (another Chicago food that I had never eaten before moving here), all topped with tomatoes (Chicago-style). This baby is loaded, oily enough that I couldn't dream of missing the cheese, and supported by a perfectly crunchy crust. I've seen attempts made at eating this by hand, but these are fork slices, for sure. Next time you're in Chicago, this is a food that I recommend not missing out on.

Monday, October 1, 2012

My New Sigg Bottle

Today's Vegan Thing I Like is my new Sigg bottle!! This is actually the second Sigg bottle I've owned, but earlier this year I left a Vega Shake in my former Sigg and then it rolled under the car seat and let's just say I haven't fully finished cleaning it out yet.

At any rate, I was in Central New York earlier this year and I had to visit Wegmans. While I was there, I figured I might as well get myself a new water bottle for travel. I hesitate to admit that it probably took me between 10-15 minutes of looking through all of the design options on the Sigg shelves at Wegmans before I could choose this winner, but I did. Flowers? Technical designs? Doodles? Ultimately, this werewolf won out because it is pretty awesome. I like these bottles because they are the perfect size and don't have a "sport" top which I find pretty useless with a bottle that you can't squeeze and also hard to clean (see above for a hint at my issues with cleaning). There are a lot of debates over which kinds of reusable bottles are the healthiest to drink from, but I feel pretty good about the Sigg and I like that they must be invested in supporting design by offering a huge variety of styles to choose from. So, Sigg gets my vote.

It's MoFo Time!

It's October and that means Vegan MoFo time! Last year, I had a theme, but this year I'm going to use MoFo as an inspiration to TRY REALLY HARD to post once a day. I don't have any posts pre-written as of yet, so this may be a challenge, but I'm eager to share all of the many Vegan Things I've liked this past year, but haven't yet had the opportunity to post about! So, here's to a great October! Happy Blogging to all of the other MoFo participants!