vegansaurus!

12/28/2009

Grading the government, loving lemons, saving deer, giving presents to pigs and more in a special holiday link-o-rama!  »

The Humane Society gives the Obama Administration a B- for animal protection, based on the Change Agenda for Animals the HSUS set at the beginning of 2009. The full report is in this pdf.

Every country is crazy and racist in its own way: in Japan, you can buy a box of tissues shaped like a bucket of KFC “chicken” with Obama styled as Col. Sanders and emblazoned with the English word CHANGE. I don’t know.

Next Saturday, Jan. 9 at Mix (4086 18th St. at Castro Street) from 3 to 7 p.m., Rocket Dog Rescue and Muttville Senior Dog Rescue are cohosting Iris’ Memorial Fundraiser! There’ll be music, art, a raffle, snacks, and drink specials, with all proceeds to benefit Rocket Dog and Muttville.

Our friends at VegNews point us to the super-disturbing news that a “medium-sized” dog eats about 360 pounds of meat per year, which “combined with the land required to generate its food” means that a medium-sized dog has twice the carbon footprint of an SUV driving 6,200 miles per year, “including the energy to build the car.” In short: VEGAN DOGS 4 LYFE. The authors are also heartless advocates of keeping rabbits for company and supper, which obviously we do not support, but COME ON, vegans, are you really feeding your companion animals other animals?

Update: Just like Michael “shut up” Pollan’s “a Hummer-driving vegan has a lighter carbon footprint than a Prius-driving omnivore” (or whatever) comment, the above “facts” regarding the environmental impact of your meat-eating pets have been proven false by actual science. Vegansaurus maintains that giving your companion animals food like V-Dog instead of vile shit even offal connoisseurs wouldn’t touch is better for everyone.

Gracias Madre finally opened and we have a first report. (Should you go? YES you should. duh.)

Arizmendi Bakery, creators of amazing mint-chocolate-chip cookies the size of your face, among other phenomenal vegan baked goods about which Megan Allison has been known to wax rhapsodic, is expanding to the Mission! We are quite pleased.

Oh hey, the recipients of the Ed Block Courage Award were announced just last week Tuesday—NFL players are nominated by and voted on by their teammates—and guess who won for the Philadelphia Eagles? YES! Everyone’s favorite dog-abusing sociopath, Michael Vick! The Ed Block Foundation “celebrate[s] players in the NFL” while “improving the lives of neglected children and ending the cycle of abuse.” I can’t imagine what kind of courage it took to STOP TORTURING AND MURDERING DOGS and START PLAYING FOOTBALL AGAIN, Michael VIck; apparently, enough to reward you for it. A-plus, then. I guess neglected, abused kids have a lot to learn from such an upstanding citizen. Have fun at dinner.

The deer at Valley Forge got a “holiday reprieve,” as the National Park’s plan to have “sharpshooters” kill 1,500 deer over four winters (a November-to-March period), beginning with 500 in 2009, was indefinitely postponed by two lawsuits. The slaughter of these 1,500 deer would destroy 85 percent of the herd presently living in Valley Forge National Park.

LA Weekly says, Meyer lemons and red cabbage are where it’s at. I say, have you ever had German braised red cabbage, all sweet and sour and delicious? It tastes like staying warm on a snowy night, highly recommended.

There’s a new chef at Weird Fish who is reportedly changing the brunch menu and eliminating lunch altogether. Um. Do we have reason to worry, here? The brunch at Weird Fish is great, we fucking love Weird Fish, please do not mess around with our vegan brunch PLEASE PLEASE.

The Guardian has food writers name the most important (for varying reasons) food books of the decade. Fast Food Nation and The Omnivore’s Dilemma get mentions, how broad-minded. Or, you know, shut up, England.

And speaking of publications that irritate me right out of my holiday booze-haze, Bon Appetit lists “the 10 best dishes under $10.” Repping for San Francisco—and the meatless—Harvey Slocombe’s tin roof sundae. Shut up, Bon Appetit.

Northern California Dungeness crab fishing: the season is short, the majority of the dead crabs are canned and shipped out of state, and it has nothing to do with honoring the values of Slow Food goddamn Nation. Color me shocked.

But HEY! here is a video of some pigs getting presents! Aren’t they adorable?

11/09/2009

Meals for Change is this really awesome company that has a too good to be true thing going on. They might be run by the mob but more likely I am just an alarmist crazy person with trust issues (all true) and they are just some of the greatest fools on earth. From their website:

Conceived as a source                        of support for Bay Area Community Services’ programs serving the elderly and disabled, Meals for Change combines our expertise in kitchen production, practical job training                        programs, and a partnership with nearby family farmers to produce creative fare with seasonal flair.

 All of the money raised goes to lots of great causes, most geared toward helping senior citizens. They’re now serving up healthy all veg-meals (many vegan! Including a vegan shepherd pie and vegan paella!) in various San Francisco supermarkets (including Rainbow, the Delanos IGA on 18th Street in the Castro, and both Real Foods).
So yeah, buy their food. Feel like less of a scumbucket. You are full and self-righteous, your day can begin!

Meals for Change is this really awesome company that has a too good to be true thing going on. They might be run by the mob but more likely I am just an alarmist crazy person with trust issues (all true) and they are just some of the greatest fools on earth. From their website:

Conceived as a source of support for Bay Area Community Services’ programs serving the elderly and disabled, Meals for Change combines our expertise in kitchen production, practical job training programs, and a partnership with nearby family farmers to produce creative fare with seasonal flair.

All of the money raised goes to lots of great causes, most geared toward helping senior citizens. They’re now serving up healthy all veg-meals (many vegan! Including a vegan shepherd pie and vegan paella!) in various San Francisco supermarkets (including Rainbow, the Delanos IGA on 18th Street in the Castro, and both Real Foods).

So yeah, buy their food. Feel like less of a scumbucket. You are full and self-righteous, your day can begin!

06/25/2009

World Wide Vegan Bakesale San Francisco is THIS WEEKEND!  »

This is just a reminder that we will be out in full force on Saturday, June 27th (in front of Ike’s Place at 3506 16th St., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.!) and Sunday, June 28th (24th St. at Capp St., 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.!) with HUNDREDS of delicious vegan baked goods! Pies, cakes, cupcakes, pastries, donuts, breakfast bars, blondies, brownies and much, much more! Our bakesale is stocked by generous donations from VegNews magazine, Sugar Beat Sweets, Bike Basket Pies, Pepple’s Donuts, Angel Cupcakes, Pure Life Chef, Pie Truck, and many other talented bakers from all over SF and beyond! We’ve even got pastry chefs from some of the finest restaurants in SF and Oakland making vegan goods! Ow!

Daisy Wares is donating a tube of her delicious lip balm to anyone who buys a dozen or more cupcakes/cookies/etc! FREE STUFF!! YES, PLEASE!

EVERY penny raised is going to be split between Animal Place and East Bay Animal Advocates, two nonprofits doing amazing work for animals. This sale will only be a success if y’all show up and turn it out in the gluttonous consumption department. So put on your eatin’ pants and come eat us I mean see us on Saturday. And Sunday. Yes. More details can be found at the World Wide Vegan Bakesale SF blog.

You should stop reading now if you’re not down for a bit of a tangent.

Okay, you’ve been warned. I’ve gotten a couple emails from people wondering if we can make a few things with butter and/or eggs. You know, for the non-vegans. The answer is NO. Further, IT’S ONE CUPCAKE. You can’t abstain from butter for ONE BAKED GOOD? Come on; it wouldn’t kill you to eat a tasty vegan treat every once in awhile. Do your heart and cholesterol a favor and take a pass on the mucus and pus spread for a day.

Ugh, now I’m just annoyed. The best is when fools get all dramatic about your response, like you’re some judgy dogmatic vegan who is just being ridiculous and even discriminatory. It’s the same mentality of people who want a straight pride parade in response to the gay pride one. EVERY PARADE IS A STRAIGHT PRIDE PARADE. Every romantic comedy and freaking blue jeans ad is a straight pride parade. Almost everything in our society is made for consumption by straight people. Let gay people have their ONE FUCKING PARADE. They deserve a lot more. Like say, equality.

But I digress. It’s infuriating when omnivores (or even vegetarians! Traitors!) get all harsh when vegans have one fucking vegan bakesale and won’t cater to their butter NEEDS—GOD THE NERVE. And don’t get me started on vegan options in restaurants. Guess what, if a restaurant doesn’t cater to vegans, I’m gonna at least let them know that I’m here and want a piece of that. If they don’t change, hell yeah I’m gonna complain. You know what? This is San Francisco in the year 2009. You want to live in a progressive city? You gotta take the good with the bad. And guess what, your nasty, dead-animal-eating ass is the bad.

So no, there will not be any butter and/or eggs at our vegan bakesale.

06/22/2009

Philz Coffee vs. Rodger’s Coffee and Tea!  »

creepy!Why am I comparing the two? Because one, I love to pit friends against each other in a bloody battle for my affections and two, they both specialize in “One Cup at a Time” coffee. If you live under a rock (or not in the Mission), what that means is, you choose exactly what type of beans you want, and they grind and brew them, mix in your desired quantities of sugar and soy milk, and deliver your dream coffee beverage. IN THEORY. In reality too, actually. After visiting both multiple times and sampling their wares, I can safely say: all this shit tastes the same, might as well be Folgers. If you’re looking for a detailed breakdown of the nuances and complexities and all that made-up bullshit people like to talk, look elsewhere! Hey Condescending Jerkface, this site isn’t called Pretentiosaurus! Although, maybe it should be. Let’s put that in the hat for our next meeting.

So, I’m gonna talk about the pros and cons in terms of vegan baked goods, and the general feeling I get from the place; that’s just how it works around here.

Vegan baked goods
Philz: Carries vegan donuts from People’s Donuts: you’ve come a long way, baby! These are SO MUCH better than when they debuted. In fact, they are downright delicious and come in a variety of flavors, from Newman’s Own (CRUSHED COOKIES ON TOP OF A DONUT. Take a minute.) to blueberry to Bac-O-Bits (!? I don’t know, whatever, I guess the vegans want in on a slice of the bacon money. Because you can serve human shit as long as it’s wrapped in bacon and a group of devotee dumbasses will slurp it up. UGH GROSS). They are all excellent but my favorite remains the cinnamon sugar. Perfect. They also sell Zoe’s Cookies' banana-walnut chocolate-chip cookies, and they are incredible; maybe my favorite vegan cookie in wide circulation in SF? Yes, I think so. They sometimes have some vegan loaf breads but I haven't seen those lately. They are tasty.

Rodger’s Coffee and Tea: VEGAN BEIGNETS CAN I HEAR SOME NOISE FROM THE BACK!? Yes, they sell vegan beignets. Yes, the fluffy fried dough balls covered in powdered sugar. And yes, I want to marry them. They are soooo delicious and rich and you feel like you’re eating a funnel cake and ugh, they are so amazing. One of the best vegan baked (fried?) goods I’ve had ever and a reason to visit Rodger’s alone. WARNING: they are only available on weekends! But maybe if we are always buying them all, they will get wise and know to carry them every day, even Christmas. ESPECIALLY CHRISTMAS.

They also sell an excellent mushroom-and-spinach vegan empanada. Bring it home, heat it up (or have them do it) and enjoy your VEGAN HOT POCKET, BITCHES! And this one won’t try to kill you! They also have a large selection of vegan cookies from Alternative Baking Company (bo-ring but thanks for having them!) and some other vegan trail mix bars and shit. I don’t know, granola bars? Yawn.

General feeling I get from the place
Philz: Good. I like it. Kinda like your grandma’s living room if your grandma was kinda crazy and into the internet.

Rodger’s Coffee and Tea: Good. I like it. Kinda doesn’t seem to know if it wants to serve hipsters or yuppies so hey, let’s hit up both! Whatever, did I mention VEGAN BEIGNETS? Not tons of seating but you’re close to Dolores Park so go there anyway. Bench out front is good for judging LAME AND HIDEOUS* passersby.

BONUS QUESTION: Have I met this “Rodger” and/or this “Philz”?
Philz: His name is Phil and yes, he’s very nice! Also, a friend of mine was Phil once for Halloween and it was amazing.

Rodger: No, but his friend came to a Rocket Dog Rescue fundraiser and gave out coupons for a free cup of coffee! He seems like a good guy to me. These coupons are actually a genius take on the frequent buyer card: your first cup of coffee is free, as well as your last. (Does Philz even have a frequent buyer card? If they do, they don’t market them very well!)

Conclusion
Why not go to both!? Start at Philz, grab several donuts, eat on way to Rodger’s, buy beignets and empanadas, eat on way to Philz. Repeat. YOU’RE WELCOME.

*see!

03/19/2009

Kasa!  »

I don’t understand why it is so fucking hard for a restaurant to stay open late in San Francisco. If you’re out past 10 p.m. and you want something other than a slice of pizza or a burrito, you’re screwed. I think our own Maria puts it best when she says:

In particular, the Castro can be a nightmare for late-night dining. There are a lot of bars and a lot of clubs and they desperately need a sit-down where the clubbing ‘mos (and the rest of us) can get our late-night sustenance on. Yes, that is correct. I just typed, “late-night sustenance on”, and please steel yourself for more bad writing and gross generalizations in this review, FOLKS. I’m tired, I’m hungry and I just paid the IRS a couple thousand in taxes because they caught me being a leeetle loosey-goosey with my reported income. Hey! I didn’t know! I got confused! I apparently tried to deduct the same pair of donated pants 12 times? Well what do you want me to do? The max they would let me take was $10 and they were from Anthropologie and cost $140! Eff you, feds! You can take my hard earned cash to fund this horrible war and our dying nation but you cannot stop me from trying to get over. THAT is the American Dream, capital-A, capital-D, capital-FUCKED. Back to the review.

Sunday through Monday the Castro workout routine is Gold’s Gym but on the weekend, it’s the DANCE! To fuel all of this exercise, you need something nearby, adequately tasty and most importantly, LOW-CALORIE. And so begins the age of Kasa.

Kasa is a new-ish Indian-ish restaurant in the Castro that is open until 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and until 2 a.m. (!!!) on Friday and Saturday. At Kasa you can choose from a kati roll (made with their own roti bread, let them know before you order that you’re vegan so they don’t douse it in ghee) or a thali, a plate filled with all sorts of magical things like chutneys, dal, rice, and shiz like that. After you decide on the kati roll or the thali, you choose a dish or two to go on the plate or into the roll. There is always at least one vegan dish on the menu: Aloo Jeera, which is cumin-spiced potatoes. They have a rotating vegetable dish of the day which may or may not be vegan. Last time I went, it was a spicy eggplant dish that was vegan. The food is adequate, if not amazing. The real calling card here is that they’re open late in an area that’s desperate for late-night eateries.

And when you’re done, you can head back to bar-and-club-landia, filled up with pretty healthy food that you’ll burn off in the time it takes to spin a Lady Gaga remix (aprox 35 minutes). I love, love, love Lady Gaga. I also love, love, love the cheesy dance clubs in the Castro. They are bursting with the cutest boys ever who, like you, just want to move to the power of the latest Britney track. There is no ass-grabbing (unless it’s to forcibly move you from between them and some hella hot dude, don’t hate) and if there is any inappropriate grinding, it’s usually your fault. WHAT I’M A LIBERATED WOMAN IT GOES BOTH WAYS NOW.

And with that I present…

Reasons not to trust straight men:
1) John Grisham.
2) They will get you pregnant.
3) Hitler.
4) They lie.
5) They all have the ability to become horrible, hateful, power-hungry rapists in times of war/extreme duress/you didn’t cook their hamburger right I said medium rare, bitch!!!
6) Jim Carrey.

Reasons to trust (and love) gay men:
1) Oscar Wilde.
2) They will help raise your bastard child.
3) Hitler wasn’t gay.
4) They lie, but it’s funny and colorful and usually to make a story more interesting.
5) Rape is most likely consensual and a form of fantasy play!
6) Puppies = the gayest!!!

03/11/2009

Hot Cookie!  »

Not much vegan on the menu at Hot Cookie, the Gayest Cookie Nook on Earth. Actually, there is only one vegan item that I know of and that is the ginger cookie. But these cookies are so good, they warrant their own post. They are not ginger snaps, they’re more like doughy ginger clouds of chewy deliciousness. The Hot Cookie owners also have big hearts, they always donates cookies to Rocket Dog Rescue for our events and so that makes them tops in my book. Plus, that is one damn fine vegan ginger cookie.

On a side note, an acquaintance of mine (okay, good friend) came in here really high one day and freaked out on the nice counter girl for not having white chocolate macadamia nut cookies. He then had some sort of a drug-mixing-induced seizure and they had to call an ambulance to get him. He was invited to never return. That’s the kind of shit they should show you in D.A.R.E.

Oh finally, they also sell a (non-vegan) cookie shaped like a penis. IN YOUR FACE, ANITA! I brought my mom here and she bought several to “give” to her “friends.” I watched in horror as she made jokes with the counter guy about the size and girth (THE GIRTH!) of the chocolate-covered snickerdoodle wang with coconut macaroon nads. Oh, life! You get me every time!!

01/07/2009

Review: Gelateria Naia!  »

I discovered Gelateria Naia and its many sorbet and soy-based flavors on my way home from working out. I think god is doing this to punish me for the one time I called Marc Fransen a fat-ass in gym class. I am cursed. And also BLESSED. Because this isn’t your typical ice cream shop where you have to get a scoop of crappy, icy raspberry flavored sorbet. NO. They have many soy gelato flavors in addition to their awesome sorbets (which includes flavors like fig, Meyer lemon, pomegranate, peach, rhubarb and prickly pear! Fancy!) The soy gelato is outstanding. Rich, creamy and not overly soy-ee tasting. I like to mix the vanilla soy gelato with the peach sorbet and have a delightfully smooth peach fantasy. Also, that would be a great name for a stripper. The best, most delicious stripper.

According to their site, “[Naia] soy gelato is completely dairy-free and can be enjoyed by the lactose intolerant and both vegetarians and vegans. [Naia] soy gelato is made using fresh organic soy milk and sugar processed without bone char.”

Honestly, it’s super-cool that they put that on their website. They are actually thinking about vegans and that’s fresh. A+++ will do business with again!

This is a local chain with locations all over the SF Bay Area (including outposts in some Whole Foods!) but my favorite store is in the heart of the Castro. The location can’t be beat for tourists and locals alike, i.e. PEOPLE. WATCHING. And I don’t mean just the gays, you homophobes. The Castro is world-class people-watching for people of all sexual orientations, colors, heights, weights, piercings, manipulations, tooth count, leg count, arm count and different forms of crazy-eyes-itis. And their cute-ass dogs. Plus, there are some great shops ranging from the ultra-adorable to the downright skanky. Enjoy! And it’s super-close to Muni, folks!

In conclusion: I don’t care that it’s rainy and freezing right now, GO! Your ass will thank you!

[top photo via yelp; bottom photo via gelateria naia]

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