I have never liked cheese. Only as a slice on a cheeseburger, or on a plain pizza. All the fancy cheeses just grossed me out. The thought of moldy, fermented cow milk was never anything I really wanted to try.
But now, as a vegan, I am really excited to try out all these new cheeses! They are not gross at all, and, ironically I’m learning all about different cheese now that I am vegan.
What does all this have to do with Vtopia? Well, for starters, it is Portland’s first all vegan cheese shop. For seconders (is that a thing?) they have an incredible deli that let’s you try all their cheeses in their glory.
Kristin and I pointed the Jeep at Vtopia, and headed to NW Portland for some lunch.
One of my favorite things when traveling for work is to hit up the ol’ Happy Cow app and see where fate and GPS lead me. Tonight they both conspired to land me in Capitol Hill in Seattle, off bustling Broadway, and to the steps of Highline Bar.
When it comes to vegan sin food, look no further than a steaming chinese buffet to quench your carby-starchy-salty cravings. And, no two Chinese vegan joints are ever created equal. There are upscale locations and, well, downscale too. Which was honestly what I expected as we pointed the Jeep to Portland’s “felony flats” to try out a new Chinese place. And boy was I wrong.
Yuan Su is located in a large building at the corner of 112th and Powell with ample parking. Once inside the huge wooden doors, the place is well lit, clean, and very spacious. I was surprised to see a stage there, but figured it was just part of the building’s history.
The service was warm and humble and quickly brought us water, house soup, and discussed the new business. As we pored over the immense menu (I honestly do not know how they can sustain such a huge menu) we decided on some options.
On a recent trip to Arizona, I checked out the Happy Cow app to help me find some local vegan restaurants and was stoked to see a place called Lovin’ Spoonfuls. After reading a few reviews I decided to head over and check it out.
The location is simple, but nice, nestled into a strip mall off Campbell Avenue. Parking was simple, and I found a spot right in front. They have a nice covered outdoor seating area and on this cool evening, I decided to eat out front.
Once inside, there is a really nice seating area with a dessert case, small retail section, and some information on animal rights and activism.
When I used to travel to Singapore, I always made sure to stop at VeganBurg – a country-wide vegan burger joint that prided itself on healthy vegan options.
So when I heard their first (and only) US location was in the heart of San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury, I knew I needed to go.
While the menu options seemed little lighter than I remember, the space itself was really nice, clean, and bright. I ordered the “Cracked Mayo” burger with seaweed fries (not as hippy as they sound, I promise), and Kristin ordered the Smoked Franks with a side of fries. Landen went with the standard – Chicken Tenders.
Way back in the day, I was a defense contractor and one of my projects was located in Twentynine Palms, California. At that time I was vegetarian, and we didn’t have fancy apps like Happy Cow to show us the way. We had to ask people.
One person told me way back then about a place in Joshua Tree (JT) called Crossroads Cafe. From that moment on in 2005, I would drive each morning from 29P to JT for their delicious espresso and vegetarian breakfast.
On a recent trip to Anaheim, California, I escaped the hotel and went off the grid in hopes of finding a good vegan place. Happy Cow did not disappoint and I ended up finding Mitasie 3 in Huntington Beach.
One of my favorite parts of traveling is finding new vegan places to eat. Last night I arrived in Anaheim, California and resigned myself to a dinner at the local Taco Bell. But I figured I should check the Happy Cow app, and sure enough, it delivered in spades!
I found a 100% vegan pizzeria about a mile from my hotel called Vegan Pizza.
I opted for the walk, to check out the place but was pleasantly surprised they also delivered.
I walked up to the little shop in the middle of a nondescript Socal strip mall.
Bend is one of my favorite cities to visit. It has the high desert weather, some amazing wilderness, amazing beers, and a pretty decent vegan scene to boot. Also, Cline Butte OHV area has some nice options for wheeling. Only thing is, you need to know where to go.
Hopefully this guide will help for your next trip.
**UPDATE!! As of Summer 2016, The Brewery at Lake Tahoe NO Longer offers the vegan burger. I have updated the post below**
There are two ends of the Rubicon trail in Northern California.
Most people start on the Loon Lake end and make their way toward South Lake Tahoe on the Eastern end. While the West end at Loon doesn’t have any amenities, the Lake Tahoe region has a ton of great, hidden vegan gems – some to hit up, and some to avoid.
I will update this little guide as my time in Tahoe expands and I am able to check out more and more places.