vegansaurus!

03/29/2013

8 Vegan Junk Food Hotspots  »

Thanks, Zagats, for pulling together this list of 8 vegan “diners, drive-ins and dives.” I was going to take issue with them putting Denver’s Watercourse on the list, since that place is damn classy, but the buffalo seitan wings are definitely junk food, so I’ll let it slide. 

I think it’s probably not cool for me to just steal all their photos and paste them here, so go look at their site if you want to see pics, but here are their choices: 

  • Chicago Diner, Chicago
  • Bender’s in SF
  • Foodswings, Brooklyn
  • Arlo’s, Austin
  • Watercourse, Denver
  • Sticky Fingers, DC
  • Blackbird Pizzeria, Philly
  • Flore, LA

I’ll just throw some other nominations out there…you got any to add? Let us know!

  • Vertical Diner, SLC
  • Souley Vegan, Oakland
  • Ike’s Place, SF (& LA soon!)

07/18/2012

For the vegan sports fan, PETA’s best veggie food at baseball stadiums  »


I grew up on baseball. My parents took me to my first Baltimore Orioles game when I was two months old. I didn’t realize you couldn’t throw peanut shells on the ground in polite company until I was way too old. And when I became a vegetarian at age 11, one of the few things I missed was ballpark hotdogs (I now shudder at the thought, but kids will be kids).

As a grown-up vegan, baseball games are still fun, but I don’t ever go for the food (though I do love the garlic fries at Giants’ Stadium). I usually bring my own version, scoff at the suckers around me paying $12 for a crappy hamburger.

Now PETA’s gone and messed that up, by pointing out there’s some veggie food at stadiums, and giving them publicity for it, so they maybe have an incentive to add more. Last week, they released a  Top 10 Vegetarian-Friendly Ballparks list.

Surprise! No. 1 is in Philadelphia. Apparently the Phillies offer a vegan chicken-steak sandwich. Sign me up!

Other top contenders, and the things there I really would want to eat, are:

2. Seattle Mariners’ Safeco Field: Vegtastic has the run-down of what to eat here. Sushi! Vegan hotdogs!

3. Detroit Tigers’ Comerica Park: vegan hot dogs.

4. Oakland Athletics’ O.co Coliseum: Eh. I’ve been here, not impressed. Not much vegan that I know of, though the vegetarian offerings might be OK.

5. Los Angeles Dodgers’ Dodger Stadium: vegan sloppy Joe, veggie sushi, and edamame, hurray!

6. New York Mets’ Citi Field: veggie dogs, veggie burgers. Here’s an outdated report!

7. Los Angeles Angels’ Angel Stadium of Anaheim: veggie dogs (I’m noticing a theme here), black-bean burgers, bean burritos, veggie wraps, and California cucumber rolls. Plus gluten-free options!

8. Washington Nationals’ Nationals Park: Hell yeah, I want me a tofu sandwich with Vegenaise, and a falafel! Last time I was here I brought my own Chipotle; that was good too.

9. Pittsburgh Pirates’ PNC Park: Vegetarian lo mein and salad with fried green tomatoes sound interesting, but not sure they’re vegan. Sigh.

10. Minnesota Twins’ Target Field: “vegan mousse martinis”?! What is that? Why don’t I have one? Plus veggie kabobs!

Road trip in order? Find out more and get ongoing news at Veggie Happy. And watch some MLB bloopers to get in the mood!

07/16/2012

Subway’s New DC Vegan Offerings: The WaPo Has a Review!  »

Only people in the DC area are getting to enjoy Subway’s new line of meaty vegan sandwiches. I was wishing I had a teleportation machine a couple weeks ago when I had to pay a dollar extra for some measly squeeze-bag avocado on my salad-on-a-bun at a gas station in Pine Junction, CO. Yes, I’d love some Daiya with that whine.

Lucky for Andrea Sachs, she’s in the area, and she’s got the full low-down on her experience over on the Washington Post’s All We Can Eat blog. My summary: They’re about what you’d expect from Subway. But way better than salad-on-a-bun.

I’ll be in DC in October, so maybe I’ll get to try them myself. Until then, let’s keep lobbying Subway to bring these nationwide! Hot dog!

01/17/2012

Road trip: Pho 14 and more in D.C.!  »

In 2010, PETA named Washington, D.C. the country’s most veg-friendly large city. This is clearly bullshit. Other than Sticky Fingers Bakery, D.C. has no “holy shit you HAVE to go there” kinds of vegan places like SF, NYC, Denver, etc. Nevertheless, there’s some good eating in that city, and over the holidays I did my duty as an American and spent a lot of money eating out so my I wouldn’t have to blame all my weight gain on the vegan Christmas cookies my [awesome] mom made.

I hit up Pho 14 in Columbia Heights with some omnivore buddies one night. Pho is all about accessories, like [insert style pop culture figure whom I’m too big a nerd to keep track of]. The vegetarian broth is kinda sweet but then BAM! add some lime juice and it’s a whole new thing.
Notice the bowling-ball lacquer on the table.

My man DK and I shared some spring rolls (so tightly wrapped!) as an appetizer, then ordered a large tofu pho, which felt like stealing because they split it for us in the kitchen, and the two bowls were huge and dinner was so cheap! This would be a great place to bring a date because you’d look classier than you really were!

Another night, DK and I wanted something romantic near the Mall (the one with the monuments, not the one with Bath & Body Works). Mandu on K Street seemed a good choice given how obsessed we were with Sura in Oakland.

The waitstaff totally got the whole vegan thing, and only brought us munchies that had no shrimp or fish sauce. Our entrees were fresh and filling but a little bland—I wanted to run into the kitchen and whip up a sauce for my bi bim bop, but instead I just ate it all including every tiny little grain of rice.

D.C.’s also know for its Ethiopian food, which I love. We hit up Dukem this time, which had a nasty bathroom, a suspicious taste of butter, and was pricey, pretty much not worth it. Try Etete or Meskerem if you’re there, those are better. But really just go to Cafe Colucci in Oakland, it’s the absolute bestest, I’m considering having children so I can send them there to be indentured servants and learn to cook for me that way.

The actual highlight for me was all about booze, duh: The Gibson, a $12-fancy-cocktail joint near all the Ethiopian places on U Street. Make a reservation and bring a smartphone, because you’re going to need to Wikipedia the shit out of their changing, incredible menu (Akvavit what?). Everything we tried was spectacular—better than SF’s Bourbon & Branch or Williams & Graham in Denver—but watch out for the egg whites they sometimes want to put in things. Gross. Definitely a great date place, especially if someone else is buying! I’m gonna start dating again just so people will buy me drinks; it’s good for my husband, too, though, I swear.

11/04/2011

Guest post: Great Sage’s vegan beer-pairing dinner exceeded expectations!  »

I am embarrassed to admit that I showed up about 40 minutes late to Great Sage’s beer-pairing dinner last week, and they still so generously served me all five courses of the meal, and even poured me a little extra brew to make up for my date abandoning me, even more embarrassingly. Good thing I am an emotional eater, and we all know a little alcohol solves everything.

Here is what you missed:

Tasting 1: Organic Lager, Grilled Romaine, roasted pepper, hearts of palm, chili crackers and rosemary-black truffle vinaigrette.
The grilling made this salad—the smell, the taste, the appearance. All of the textures together were spot on, and I cannot even get over those chili crackers, just like vegan Cheez-Its! The lager was light and clean, the perfect match for this light and clean salad.

Tasting 2: Tadcaster Ale, Quinoa and lemon-herb “tabouli” with red bell pepper and parsley garlic emulsion.
I was honestly full after the salad, but I managed to forge on through the second course. The tabouli and Tadcaster were the perfect combination of sweet and bitter. The lemon and bell pepper was zesty and light while the ale balanced it with a smooth, thick sweetness. The Tadcaster was my favorite beer of the four, as it was thicker than the lager, but not too heavy to easily down two (or three, or 10).

Tasting 3: Indian Pale Ale, Crimson lentil stew

with coconut and tomato over Indian curry fire rice.I keep referring to this dish as a risotto, because that is what the texture reminded me of. When the waiter sat it down on the table, the smell of coconut wafted from the bowl; when I dug my spoon in, it smelled instantly of sweet curry. Everything about this dish made me feel so comfortable and relaxed.

While I know many people seem to have a distaste for both curry and IPAs, I found this combination to be phenomenal. The stew was sweeter than spicy, and the beer was less hoppy than other IPAs I’ve had.

Tasting 4: Italian Oatmeal Stout, Crisp seitan-“feta”-spinach phyllo tart with garlic whipped Yukon potatoes and stout glaze.
The phyllo tart was incredible; it melted like (vegan) butter in my mouth. The filling had a strong black pepper taste that mellowed out with the addition of the sweet stout glaze. Not to mention, I freaking love Brussels sprouts!

The stout really surprised me. I usually hate stout beers because I think they taste like flat soda—sweet, but lacking that necessary carbonation. However, this stout was not missing that added element to me; it was just naturally smooth.

Dessert: Pumpkin cheesecake with pomegranate syrup
I want to describe this to you but I can only think of an incoherent synonyms for “epic deliciousness”—silky, pumpkin, chocolate (yeah, I think the crust was chocolate!), sweet, sour, crunchy, candy, creamy, yum.

The food was phenomenal, the beer was phenomenal and the combinations were perfect. The best part is that all the beers from the Samuel Smith Brewery, like all of the food at Great Sage, are 100 percent vegan!

Shay Kemble is an aspiring lifestyle writer in Washington, D.C. She believes she can bring humor to any situation and will do so on her upcoming blog.

10/17/2011

Guest Post: Vegansaurus D.C. and Baltimore: Great Sage’s Beer Pairing Dinner!  »

I found out a few days ago that an employee at Great Sage considers me a “regular.” I really shouldn’t be surprised considering I eat there at least once a week, but I thought that I was more discreet than that. Going in twice in one day probably didn’t help, but come on, a girl has to eat three meals a day plus dessert, right? Now I just imagine that every time I go in, the wait-staff must snicker.

As a regular, I feel it’s my duty to spread the word about Great Sage’s beer pairing dinner that is going down in just over a week. Of course I’ll be there!

Here are the details:
Beer Pairing Dinner
, featuring vegan beers from Samuel Smith Brewery
Monday, Oct. 24, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m.
Great Sage, 5809 Clarksville Square Dr., Clarksville, M.D. (443) 535.9400
$55 per person (plus tax and gratuity, reservations required, limited seating, not gluten-free)

MENU
Tasting 1: Organic Lager, Grilled Romaine, roasted pepper, hearts of palm, chili crackers and rosemary-black truffle vinaigrette.

Tasting 2: Tadcaster Ale, Quinoa and lemon-herb ‘tabouli’ with red bell pepper and parsley garlic emulsion.

Tasting 3: Indian Pale Ale, Crimson lentil stew with coconut and tomato over Indian curry fire rice.

Tasting 4: Italian Oatmeal Stout, Crisp seitan-“feta”-spinach phyllo tart with garlic whipped Yukon potatoes and stout glaze.

Dessert: Pumpkin cheesecake with pomegranate syrup [Ed.: HOLY SHIT].


How delicious does this menu sound!? Make your reservations now, Washingtonians and Baltimoreans!

Shay Kemble is an aspiring lifestyle writer in Washington, D.C. She believes she can bring humor to any situation and will do so on her upcoming blog.

[photo of Great Sage’s Peach Napoleon via Yelp]

03/26/2011

Here’s the video from an awesome Ringling protest in D.C. I’m so hype on this projection idea! I don’t care if it means there will be aborted fetuses on the side of Planned Parenthood (I’m pretty sure that’s what it means). Still, this RULES. We SHOULD show those circus goers what is ACTUALLY happening in the “greatest show on earth!”

Here’s the video for the FBI protest the narrator mentions. So awesome. I miss D.C.!

12/30/2009

Vegansaurus Quickie: Washington, DC!  »

I couldn’t go back to the east coast and not make a trip to DC. So, gosh darn it, that’s what I did! I only had time for a 24-hour whirlwind visit but of course I had time to go to Sticky Fingers! You may have heard of the all-vegan bakery in D.C., as certain Vegansaurs are a wee bit obsessed!!! with the place. There’s even an interview with the creator of their cute (badger?) logo! Ob. Sessed.

Don’t worry guys! You would have been proud! I spent $35 on pastries. YES I DID!

The bakery is in a different location then when I lived in D.C.; now they have this whole cafe thing going on, with brunch and everything. Pretty effing fantastic.

I also managed to stop by my friend Nick’s new wine bar, Room 11, for dinner. Score! They totally make vegan versions of their specials, you just have to ask! Check out this action: VEGAN BRUSSELS SPROUT PANZANELLA. Holy cannoli! It was awesome. And panzanella is fun to say. Then I had a yummy veganized risotto and proceeded to get SHWASTED because that’s just how I roll.

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