Travel log: Portland knows food
Wow!! I'm in love with Portland's vegan food choices. I'm in love with the nice people, the free parking, cheap fuel prices, cheap yoga, inexpensive organic food options, making new friends and meeting my fellow tweeters. I'm not in love with the craptastic weather though! It was raining and freezing cold the whole time I was there. But it's winter, so I just gotta deal with it.
If you look at my photos from the trip it is all food, food, and more food. My jeans are tight and it's time to hit the gym every day! Here are my favorites from Portland!
Sweet Pea Bakery
I was so happy that I caught the Sunday all-you-can-eat $10 buffet at Sweet Pea the day after Christmas. This video kind of explains how amazing it was and how awesome the vegan strip mall is! Especially Food Fight grocery!
The sun began to shine and I got myself out of the house. As soon as I reached the bus stop it started SNOWING!! I was on my way downtown to check things out and go eat at some of the vegan food carts down there, but with the weather that wasn't an option. I popped over to Prasad and I'm sure glad I did.
The menu was clean, healthy, reasonably priced, with loads of gluten-free options. I went with the Chili Bowl, which had steamed kale, red rice, chili, topped with avocado and a tahini dressing. It was so yum and nourishing. It was the closest to macrobiotic food I could find in Portland. They also had beautiful, tasty, gluten-free, and some raw desserts available.
One of my fav places I visited twice during my trip was Vita Cafe. There menu has a lot of variety and Wednesday is $5 night where you can get a fishwich that is super tasty! I was really drawn to the Tempeh Reuben on our first visit. There has been a reuben war going on in Los Angeles, and my favorite place to get one closed down. I ended up creating one for my cookbook so I could have the deliciousness of a tempeh reuben readily available. Vita's reuben rivaled all the ones in LA.
Be warned, Vita Cafe must be in a very kid-friendly area because both times we visited there were kids screaming all around us. They play great music there but it was kind of drowned out by all the kids. No biggie, just not a place you want to go for a romantic evening or to talk with your dinner partner.
Vita is right down the street from Back to Eden Bakery where you can get amazing vegan desserts with lots of gluten-free options. My bf (pictured above) and I had the Coconut Cream Pie and it was just sick! As in so rich I thought my pancreas might explode. Definitely stop in when you get a sweet tooth!
Black Sheep Bakery and Cafe
This place isn't 100% vegetarian, but for a quick lunch (build your own sandwiches!) or when you need a coffee fix with some coffee cake, this is the place to go. I had their special sandwich, the split pea soup, and a carrot cupcake. The sandwich was literally the best sandwich I've ever had in my life. Their vegan focaccia bread was to die for and supposedly it's the best place to get vegan muffins (I tried the coffee cake, also to die for)!!
Another thing I did was meet up with my fellow vegan bloggers and tweeters at the Bye and Bye, which is a bar that has great vegan food and brews. It was so nice to meet people that I've been following for a while now. It's like we already knew each other! Pictured is Janessa and Geanna, and I met some other great gals that didn't want to be photographed!! Check out their blogs! and a delish meatball sub!
Other places I tried: Juniors (best vegan french toast in the world!) Red and Black Cafe, Papa G's, Paradox (great pancakes!) and Rocco's pizza. One of the many things I love about Portland is all the local businesses. Even non-vegetarian places have plenty of vegan options. This city is just hip to the fact that vegan options are essential on any restaurant menu. Also Oregon has many local products like beers, kombucha, baked goods and produce available across the city. They like to keep it in the family. I appreciate this so much being an advocate for local goods and services.
Overall I really loved Portland and the food there. I was disappointed to not try Portobello and Blossoming Lotus. Will have to try those places next time I visit, which may not be until August for the Vida Vegan Conference. If you haven't gotten your tickets for that go here. Should be a blast!!