Archive for What I Ate

Vegan Food at the Vancouver Christmas Market

Well, guys, it’s that time of the year again. I’m not quite sure where 2018 went, but what I do know is, I ate some great food this year.

The Vancouver Christmas Market has become an annual tradition here in our fair city. Every year, they build a magical village at Jack Poole Plaza (surrounding the Olympic torch) in Coal Harbour. Vancouver Christmas Market

Christmas Markets are a staple in Europe, and this one is done in a German tradition. There are tons of activities for the kids, an old-fashioned carousel, live music, and of course German beer and traditional gluhwein, warm wine mulled with spices.

There are tons of crafty-type booths where you can buy Christmas gifts, but for me, the highlight of the Christmas market is the food. I mean, duh, right??

While many people equate German food with meat-oriented foods like schnitzel and bratwurst, the reality is that Germany has a huge vegan population. And this year, there are more vegan food choices than ever at the Vancouver Christmas market.

There are two new vegan options this year, so I’ll start with those first.

Organic Villa Veggie Dog

Organic Villa Vegan Haus – This is where you’re going to find some savoury items. They serve a quinoa and bean burger, a roasted veggie wrap, a veggie dog, and dosas. Dosas, guys!! Yeah, yeah, I know they’re not German, but they are delicious. I tried the veggie dog from here. It’s made with an Yves veggie dog, but the spicy, cheesy sauce and toppings are what make it delicious.

Mr. Hotcakes

Mr. Hotcakes: Dessert in the form of a filled pancake! Mr. Hotcakes makes these vegan pancakes that are filled in the middle with a sweet brown sugar syrup. Then they put them on the grill and you get a toasty pancake with a gooey, warm, sweet centre. So good!

Das Gulasch Haus vegan stew

Das Gulasch Haus: These guys do a hearty stew filled with potatoes and other veggies, served in a bread bowl. So comforting and warm.

Bavarian Burger: Despite the name, these guys sell a vegan split pea soup.

Das Kartoffelhaus Hurricane Potatoes: yup, those giant potatoes on a stick are vegan. Vegan toppings include cinnamon sugar, salt & vinegar, and ketchup.

Vegan Churros

Traditional Spanish Churros: also really, really not German, but who cares?? I have to have these every time I go to the market. Because donuts, guys. Donuts.

Taste the Wild: These guys do a hot vegetable and mushroom broth that’s made from locally-sourced mushrooms from right here in British Columbia.

Das Stollen Haus: They have a whole selection of vegan cookies and baked goods for yourself, or to gift.

You’ll also find vegan chocolate and vegan candy options as well.

Gluhwein

The Vancouver Christmas Market is open now until Christmas Eve at Jack Poole Plaza. Admission is $12 for adults ($10 if you buy your tickets online), and food items will run you anywhere from $5-$15.

Vegetarian Tasting Plates

I would love to be able to say I know all the best veg place to eat in Vancouver, because I’ve eaten at all of them.

But I can’t guys. I just can’t.

You see, I’m just one girl, with one stomach, and we are quite blessed with an abundance of great vegetarian and vegan eateries in this city. On top of that, there’s new ones cropping up all the time.

Vegan Tacos La Cantina

It’s hard to keep on top of it all. I mean, sure, I can recommend the big ones; Heirloom, The Acorn, MeeT, etc. But I would like to be able to speak more intelligently about some of the smaller, lesser-known gems in the city.

So I was pretty stoked to get an invite to Richard Wolak’s (@vanfoodster) first Vegetarian Tasting Plates last week. I was equally as excited to discover I’d not been to any of the eateries on the list. Yeah. They were all new to me, although quite a few of them were ones that were on my list, but I hadn’t made it to yet.

It was a great opportunity to discover new favourites.

It’s worthwhile to note that at almost every place we went to, the options were overwhelmingly vegan. There were a few where cheese was an option, but you could keep it off, or choose a vegan cheese, and keep the dish vegan.

The Living Produce Aisle

Living Produce Aisle Microgreens

Yaletown isn’t really known for its plant-based options. The Living Produce Aisle is a really interesting business model that feels quite unique. They house many, many Urban Cultivators, some of which are growing microgreens for themselves, and some of which are producing for local restaurants. I’ve been a big fan of the Urban Cultivator since I discovered them a few years ago, and I wish I had enough kitchen space to own one. Here, you can get smoothies, juices, and grab some microgreens while you’re at it.

Firecrust Pizza

Firecrust Pizza

I used to work on Davie Street, so I was pretty familiar with the lunch offerings there, but since I no longer work in the neighbourhood, I get there shockingly little (especially seeing as I don’t actually live far from there). Firecrust was one of those places I’d driven past a million times and never gone into. They have a ton of vegan options. One of the things that’s most exciting about Firecrust is that they work with YamChops, so “meats” come from there. My Vegan BBQ Pizza was delicious, smoky, a bit spicy, a nice bite from the onions, and they make their own vegan mozza in house. I will be returning and bringing the kid.

Saj & Co

Saj and co

Right across the street from Firecrust is this weird hole-in-the-wall called Saj & Co. Malek Anouti, owner and chef, makes magic in a tiny little space that can hardly even be called a kitchen. The food here is Lebanese, and the joint is named after the saj, which is a domed oven on which Anouti cooks a flatbread to order. It’s kind of a reverse tandoor. When you order, he slaps one on the saj for you, so you get a fresh, hot flatbread with each order. Mezze plates include hummus, salad, and wraps/sandwiches, which are all super fresh, and tasty. I love how vegan-friendly Mediterranean food is. My favourite thing here was the squash hummus, which I will be attempting to recreate for my family’s thanksgiving dinner this weekend.

Davie Dosa

Davie Dosa

I was sad when Cafe Luxy closed. It was a favourite spot of mine for many years for delicious pasta. But then Sharv Ramachandran opened up Davie Dosa. If you’ve never had a dosa, it’s cool. I actually only just had dosa for the first time about a year ago, but I was immediately hooked. It’s a kind of pancake or crepe, made from fermented lentil flour, and then stuffed with vegetables. Maybe I didn’t do it justice with my description, but they are freaking delicious. Indian cuisine is another that loans itself so easily to being vegetarian and vegan, so there are tons of options for veg-heads here. One of my favourite things on the plate was medhu vada, a kind of savoury donut made with lentils. I know, it sounds weird, but just go with it. It’s delicious. The service, by the way, was really fantastic. I am looking forward to getting back again to try more on the menu.

La Cantina

La Cantina

Located just off of Granville in the heart of the Entertainment district, I imagine this Nacho Libre-themed cantina does a brisk business at 2 am. The place is frikkin’ adorable, with big murals and Mexican wrestling masks everywhere. The server spoke Spanish fluently, so that made me feel good, like I might be getting an authentic experience. There are 6 different vegetarian tacos to choose from, featuring meaty vegetables like jackfruit and portobellas, not just beans. The carrot tinga was spicy and good, and I also really enjoyed the more moderate smoky heat of the Poblano. It is such a fun location, it’s well worth a return visit.

Hooray! New veg options to love, Vancouver! Now get out there and support some local veg biz.

 

« Older Entries Recent Entries »