Curry Up Now in San Francisco’s Mission District hits the spot! »
I love drinks in mason jars! It feels so Portland, Oregon!
One of my last afternoons in San Francisco, I found myself in the Mission District’s Curry Up Now restaurant. I had been meaning to go for a while, and was in the mood for a light snack. Samosas and beer it was!
I enjoyed my afternoon pit stop. My only regret is that I was not more hungry, because many of their menu items sounded pretty good! Curry Up has a nice beer selection, along with special vegan and gluten-free menus. The prices were fair, dare I say, even on the inexpensive side? Inexpensive for San Francisco, that is. I thought this would be a good place to grab a bite to eat and a drink with co-workers, when everyone is different levels of hungry and spend-happy! It’s also open late (midnight) on Fridays and Saturdays, which is great because I get HUNGRY when I go out. I don’t always want a burrito; I like variety!
I pretended to be enthralled by the decor (which is actually quite nice) while I eavesdropped on the young, hipster girls at the table next to me discuss Taylor Swift at length. It was a little slice of heaven.
Curry Up Now has three locations in the Bay Area, including 659 Valencia in San Francisco, 321 Hamilton Ave in Palo Alto, and 129 South B Street in San Mateo!
Rau Om’s mind-blowing new vegan cheese; you must try! »
Well, not that exactly. What had happened was, when it first arrived, I greedily ripped open the packaging, cut off an enormous chunk, and stuffed it straight in my maw. Then, I spit it out because it was DAMN POTENT. I then read the accompanying information and saw that it was supposed to be eaten like CHEESE. My bad!
Finally I came correct with some crackers and it blew my mind one more time. Creamy, pungent, expensive-tasting, “real” cheese. Like, you could serve this to omni guests and they would eagerly wish to learn more about it, and you would be like, “NOT UNTIL YOU GO VEGAN, OK?” and then they would go vegan and BAM! Look at you and your activism, all saving the world and shit via delicious vegan cheese.
If you want to try this stuff inside the United States, you have two options: You can order from maker Rau Om’s online store; or, find them at Sunnyvale and Palo Alto farmers markets. Also, if you have a minute, read this article to learn tons about this kind of cheese, so that you know more about things than everyone else, and can make other people feel stupid when you talk about it. Like, who doesn’t know about tofu misozuke!? Philistines!!
You gonna be in Palo Alto tonight? Well then you totally have to go meet vegan chef Tal Ronnen when you eat at LYFE Kitchen! While you’re at it, will you please try their healthy(-ish) vegan fried chicken for me (so curious!), and get tips on deep-frying kale from Tal.
Let’s talk all about frying things when you get back, because that’s hella fun. Then, we’ll have a deep-fry party and invite the president! Oh my, I fear I’m getting ahead of myself.
The details on the flyer are above, so do it to it!
ACT FAST: Free Sandwich at Ike’s Place! »
You all know how Ike’s Place is back up and running at a location catty corner to his original and we’re all very very happy about it?? Well! Now they’re giving away FREE IKE’S PLACE SANDWICHES and you don’t even have to send one million dollars to a Nigerian prince to get it! Amazing!
The actual sandwich is the Vegan Ugly Owl (vegan breaded chicken, vegan cheese, teriyaki sauce, HELLO DELICIOUS) and you need to just go to Scoutmob and give them a
fake email address and then GIRL, HOOK IT UP! You gotta order it today and it expires on November 13 so you MUST ACT FAST! Don’t say we didn’t warn you!
Also, in other awesome Ike’s news, you know there’s a VEGANSAURUS SANDWICH, right?? To find out what it is, you have to go to Ike’s Cold at Stanford, and pick one up. All we can say is, it’s delicious, and there’s a fucking VEGANSAURUS SANDWICH AT IKE’S. We’ve truly arrived in the land of deliciousness!
[delicious vegan ike’s sandwich photo via yelp]
LYFE Kitchen to open very soon, and here’s the menu! »
LYFE Kitchen (Meave wrote about them earlier this year) is set to open “later this month” (it’s already August 23! When, dammit! When!) at 167 Hamilton Ave in Palo Alto. As a refresher, LYFE kitchen is an experimental healthy fast food restaurant from some former McDonald’s head honchos, Oprah’s chef Art Smith (WHAT’S UP, O!), and vegan chef extraordinaire, Tal Ronnen. Because of Tal’s involvement, there are tons of vegan options on the menu, and they all look damn good. That’s a picture of the vegan corn chowder, I WILL EAT YOU. I THOUGHT all the desserts were supposed to be vegan, but they’re not marked as such, even though that banana run cheesecake sounds like something from Tal’s cookbook?? I dunno ‘bout that!
I got to interview Art Smith earlier this year and he was a very charming Southern gent of adorability and I fell straight in love with him. He told me Moby played his wedding’s after-party (yes, a wedding with an after-party! MARRY ME, ART! I, too, love to party hard!) and the whole thing was vegan (at Moby’s insistence, although Art thought it was a great idea, too!). Man, TO BE RICH AND IN LOVE. Although not to be a bitch but to be a total bitch, I’d probably have Leslie Hall play my after-party. Sorry, Moby! You just can’t work a gem sweater like my girl Leslie!
Anyway, what do you think of the menu? Will you be going to Palo Alto to eat there? I am pretty sure I will because even though the target demographic is soccer moms, I can eat just as much as those bitches! Also, I’d like this idea to succeed, and for the vegan options to sell well, and for LYFE Kitchen to grow bigger than McDonald’s and for us all to eat vegan banana rum cheesecake in a field of dreams! LET’S DO THIS.
Peninsula vegans have a couple new options! »
Where do vegans in the San Francisco Peninsula eat? I’m always spending time there with my family, getting dragged to Cheesecake Factory, as I know of no where I can take my omnivorous family that we will all be happy. I hear there’s a Patxi’s down there, which I believe the family could get into (I’d totally get my own personal vegan pizza! I love not having to share food!)
Two new eating options have come to my attention and both look extremely tasty. First there is Calafia Cafe, located in Palo Alto. It looks like omni’s and vegans have plenty of delicious, fancy, entrees, appetizers, sides and small plates to choose from, plus they have gluten-free options! Everyone wins! I’ll have the black bean and rojo tofu tacos, please (I’m kind of obsessed with vegan Mexican food).
Next up, Milk Pail Market in Mountain View. From the website alone, it’s hard to tell if they have vegan cheese options, but rumor has it, they carry vegan versions of gouda, monterey jack and pepper jack. How exciting!
Have any readers hit up either of these places? What do you think?
[crimson quinoa salad photo via Calafia Cafe]
Lyfe Kitchen: Tal Ronnen, Art Smith, and a couple of dudes who used to work for McDonald’s want you to eat their healthy food »
Guess what, vegans and the people who love them: restaurateurs really do want your money! Seriously! They are starting a chain of restaurants called Lyfe Kitchen, which will serve “healthy” omnivorous and vegan dishes. Art Smith, Oprah’s totally not-vegan chef who was once on Top Chef: Masters, has of late eschewed his creamy-buttery-cheesy cuisine for less artery-clogging death food at his own restaurant, and is in charge of the omnivorous part of the menu, and Tal “Mr. Gardein” Ronnen will be developing the vegan section. Plans are to open the first Lyfe Kitchen in Palo Alto, Calif. this summer.
This sounds kind of great, right? Except it also sounds a little, um, nutty. The chain will be marketed to “women age 18 to 49, hoping they’ll like the food enough to bring back friends andfamilies. While she’s enjoying a grain salad, there’s a beefy burger for her husband. While he’s munching away, he might try a bite of hers, and even like it.” Wait, what? Yeah, who wants to puke after reading that? Three sentences packed full of gnarly stereotypes, but stereotypes sell! And this isn’t a “vegan” restaurant: “The menu so far avoids modifiers like ‘vegan,’ ‘gluten-free’ and ‘dairy-free,’” despite offering such options. Because “vegan” is “scary” and “gluten-free” is for “crazies” and Lyfe Kitchen isn’t for scary crazies, it’s for Middle American Families and the Moms Who Run Them.
So definitely this is a positive idea coming to fruition, right? We shall see—you know your Vegansaurus will be checking this place out once it opens. What do you all think: is marketing to McDonald’s Moms the right way to sell a chain of semi-vegan restaurants? I mean, in Tal we trust, but as for the rest of the business partners and the model, who knows.
Quick-Ass San Francisco Bay Area Thanksgiving Guide! »
Souley Vegan is doing a special Thanksgiving menu (info is further down the post). I’m hoping for a veganized deep-fried turkey leg. I wanna get Medieval on your asses!
Café Gratitude returns with their FREE VEGAN THANKSGIVING! No matter that it’s raw, it’s free! I mean, you’re already vegan, might as well become a full-on holiday meal weirdo. Oh, and it looks like you might have to work? But, er, FREE FOOD!
If you want to get a meal at a supermarket and bring it home, check out:
Whole Foods varies what it offers store-to-store. Our pals in Los Angeles, quarrygirl, got the Whole Foods dinner last year and looooooved it. Search by store location on their site, or give your closest store a call and find out what they’re offering!
Andronico’s has a pretty rad deal at their eight Bay Area locations! They’re introducing a vegan meal this year and it sounds delicious:
Field Roast: Wild rice, cranberry, fig and grain roast en croûte (1 pound)
Roasted root vegetables (1 pound)
Vegan yukon gold mashed potatoes (1 pound)
Vegan mushroom gravy (½ pint)
Cranberry orange chutney (½ pint)
Vegan pumpkin pie (6 inches)
It’s only $30 for all that awesome food! GET ON IT!
AND NOW: it’s DESSERT TIME! That means PIE!!
You can get vegan options at Mission Pie (order ahead!), Bike Basket Pies (OUR FAVORITES! Best pie in the Bay Area! Order ahead!), or pick one up at Rainbow Grocery or Whole Foods. Also, check out all our our local vegan bakeries and see if they might make you up something special? Bet they will! A cake from Sugar Beat Sweets? Cupcakes from Fat Bottom Bakery? A giant cinnamon roll from Cinnaholic? A toffee treat from Wholesome Bakery? Nabolom Bakery has lots of good vegan options! There are pies and Weekend Ruiner cinnamon rolls from A Fire Inside. Idle Hands Baking Company makes cupcakes and cakes if you aren’t a pie person. Or get a pumpkin pie ice cream cake from Maggie Mudd—that flavor’s coconut milk-based, it’s intense. The options are endless, but you better call now!
Also, if you don’t want others to do the dirty work, you could totally make your own fabulous Thanksgiving, lazy!
Now, let’s get fat, American-style! Happy Thanksgiving!
I think everyone knows by now, but if you don’t, Patxi’s has vegan deep-dish pizza made with Daiya cheese and it’s the mickey fickey bomb. OH ALSO: they hella deliver. With two locations in SF, they have most of the city covered. They’re also in Palo Alto so all you dorks are covered too, but probably not you poor people in East Palo Alto. SORRY, try being born rich! That’s the only thing that will save you now! Moving on: Some Steves I know are hella persnickety about shiz and if you like stuff to taste its best, you’ll heed his ordering how-to:
It takes a really long time for them to make the deep dish (worth it, though!), usually around 40 minutes. But you can call ahead before you come in, and they’ll start making it for you, even if you’re going to sit down and eat there. Not everyone is impatient but sometimes you want the slow, leisurely part of the dinner to happen after you’ve stuffed your face and you’re no longer an inch away from cannibalizing your unsuspecting dinner date. You can also have them prepare a pizza but not bake it, then you bring it home and bake it whenever you want. I’ve never done this, so I have no idea how it turns out. Point is, they are flexible and they know how busy and important you are.
If you’re like me and just want to be fat and happy ASAPly, have them deliver to your face and then eat it all. And by eat it all, I mean you’ll be lucky if you get through a piece HOLY SHIT SO BIG AND FILLING. It’s a little expensive but you have to consider that it’ll provide enough sustenance to get you through the zombie apocalypse.
Let’s hear it for Chicago-style deep-dish vegan pizza in San Francisco! Some dreams do come true! Not like the ones where you live in a pink mansion in Malibu surrounded by Nagels but at this point, I’ll takes what I can gets.