Ethos Vegan Restaurant – Where I try to find out What’s the Dilly Philly.

Our first day in Orlando we checked out Downtown Disney, and Babycakes NYC, and did a little bit of Shopping (at the Lego store). Unfortunately, the night we arrived in Florida my camera, which I had been a constant companion for just under a year, stopped working. We started our day with a very drove over to Tiger Direct to pick up a cheap replacement that would serve me pretty well for the rest of the roadtrip, but in the process got into a bit of an adventure on Orlando highways. We learned a valuable lesson that day… critical thinking is good to use while using the GPS. Luckily, we figured things out (with the help of Google Maps.) and got where we were going. During our time in Orlando, we went to Ethos Vegan Restaurant everyday we could (which ended up only being twice). They were closed early on Christmas Eve, & closed on Christmas Day, but open for Boxing Day, which is just a regular day in the USA and Christmas Eve Eve. They’re located in Winter Park, a suburb of orlando. On our first visit we walked in all excited, because the space is HUGE, especially taking into account the relatively tiny restaurant spaces (vegan or otherwise) we’ve got in Toronto. It’s got a big sign outside including the Vegan word, but otherwise just looks like a regular ol place, with a diverse colourful art selection on the walls, a boardgame corner, a bar, a little to-go corner,…

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Detroit Visit – Day 0.5 – Dinner and a Casino.

We’re back in Toronto again, but had a great time in Detroit and the surrounding area. I wouldn’t mind visiting again sometime. After we had arrived, checked in, and got comfy in our hotel room, I scanned the internet for a suitable eatery – Seva jumped out at me. Seva has two locations, one in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and more recently (as in, in the last two weeks) they opened a location in Detroit. Seva Detroit – (66 E. Forest Ave. Detroit, MI). It’s located behind the N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art (the restaurant entrance is on the left side of the building.) There appear to be two seating sections, a bar/lounge/young adult table zone in the back, and a place where grown ups can eat in the front. We were seated in the back at the kids table, near the bar. It was pretty busy in the front, so I’m assuming that’s part of it (they do accept reservations). The back bar space has a very nice collection of art from the N’Namdi Center, during our visit it appeared to be mostly by Valencia Robin, and we sort of eased into the relaxed atmosphere, people chatting, espresso machines espressing, surrounded by exposed brick and rich wooden beams. We started with drinks, JC got a Seva Soda with Basil and Strawberry (as recommended by our server) and I ended up with Root Beer (which by the way, I found out later was not vegan – damn you raw honey.) There…

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On the road to Detroit – First stop – Veg Out in London, ON

After a very long drive into Detroit, we made it in at around 5pm yesterday. Of course, we stopped in London to eat and buy a GPS to avoid getting lost. Before yesterday I hadn’t ever been to London (Ontario that is), but since we were going to need a lunch stop, and there are a bunch of nice looking restaurants there, we planned to stop there. Veg Out was not the first on my list to visit, but last minute I changed my mind and said, hey let’s go to Veg Out. I’m so glad we did, though at the time I also kind of wish we never left the car, it was windy and freezing out there. Brr. So Veg Out (646 Richmond St.) is a great little place in London, Ontario. It’s got a casual atmosphere and the service is friendly and welcoming. It was full of people, which is always nice to see. I started with a Cocobanana smoothie, which with coconut milk, bananas and dates, was a clear winner. Super thick and lightly sweet, it beat JC’s Blue Sky pop choice out of the park. Next we ordered a dal soup and a home made garlic bread plate with tapenade. The bread was fluffy and sweet and reminded me a lot of the challah I made back when Rosh Hashana was on, so of course, I’m going to try to duplicate this dish. the tapenade was perfectly salty sour and paired well with the… I’m going…

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Joe Yee Vegetarian Sushi and we`re driving to Detroit.

This Thursday was one of my favourite Thursdays in a while because it also happened to be Date Night. Which also sounds silly, because JC and I do things on days other than date night, but set aside (usually Tuesday) to plan on doing something together. Since this week’s Tuesday was filled up by my sewing class we rescheduled. I think we might both be going stir-crazy because JC booked a zip car, and I hunted down a restaurant that was outside of Toronto. Yelp reviews by trusted friends made me choose Joe Yee Vegetarian Cuisine (9688 Leslie Street (Between 16th Avenue and Major MacKenzie Drive), Richmond Hill, ON), and I’m so glad we went. It`s a small space, and there were several people already eating and enjoying their meals. Service was friendly, and the tea was delicious. I really loved that they provided both a written menu as well as a separate menu with pictures. The food is vegetarian pan-asian, sushi, noodle dishes, Thai style soups, and other options, there is probably something for everyone. The fake salmon items are not vegan – it has whey in it – but there are several other vegan options to choose from. We started with the Tango Sushi rolls. They were beautifully presented and delicious, with fake crab meat, mango, inari, oshinko, wrapped with thinly sliced avocado and the usual seaweed. The salty, sweet, sour combo was awesome. Next we had the Thai style hot and sour soup (somewhere between a tom yum or…

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Superbowl for two

I feel like I’m in the minority of my friends that actively enjoy and watch the Superbowl every year. This year was no different. Amongst dozens of Facebook posts and hundreds of tweets with anti-football sentiment. Well, I’ll just come out and say it – we watched it, and enjoyed it, and possibly even bet on it (and won). What helped make the evening even more fun was the multilayer dip JC and I made together. Re-fried beans, cilantro-y guacamole, a melty pepper-jack cheese sauce made with Daiya, fresh salsa, Tofutti sour cream, olives, tomatoes and chopped up scallions. It was great and lasted for a few days. We also picked up a few packages of Gardien Buffalo and Barbecue wings from Panacea, but didn’t make many on Sunday. We had beer from two local brewery’s – Beau’s Organic and Mill Street. I’ve said I’m not really a fan of beer, but it’s grown on me over the years, especially these two. We tried the Beau’s Organic for the first time at the Conscious Food Festival this summer, and I’ve loved it ever since. After the weekend, Monday disappeared. A busy workday, followed by a strange urge to clean the house. Of course, since then I’ve since started looking for local green cleaning service. I actually really enjoy cleaning, but these days there seem to be fewer and fewer hours in the day as I start participating in classes and volunteering more often. My issue with cleaning companies is that…

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Conscious Food Festival

I went to check out the Conscious Food Festival this weekend. I didn’t go last year, but the reviews generally complained of a lack of non alcoholic options and minimal vegan options. This year, it seemed to have something for everyone (alcohovore, herbivore, omnivore, or whatever.) There were options from restaurants and local breweries, presentations by local chefs at the Conscious Food School, as well as a Conscious Food Battleground where chefs went head to head with different challenges. Chefs Darren Stoute & Shawn Lane of Stoute Catering offered a local stuffed field tomato dish. I was waiting for some kind of obscure non vegan item in the tomato, but was happy to hear there wasn’t anything weird in it. The tomato dish was complex and flavourful option, stuffed with roasted root vegetables, corn, black beans and drizzled with a four herb and lime infused olive oil. Pizzeria Libretto / Enoteca Sociale showcased a crisp cucumber radish salad. I have never been to Pizzeria Libretto or Enoteca Sociale, but after that salad, I’m sincerely tempted to do so. Marben (488 Wellington St W, Toronto, ON) was showing off their versatility and partnership with The New Farm with a rich mustard based potato salad and a spicy red gazpacho. This was an exciting revelation for my non-vegan partner, because he’s loved that place but since it’s generally known as a meat heavy restaurant, we’ve never gone there. I spoke to one of the chefs a little further, and he mentioned it…

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A real visit to Washington, DC. – Day one

It’s been a long time coming, but I finally visited Washington, DC. Back in November during VeganMofo I planned out a little trip for myself, and I actually used some of my own advice while I was there, but DC is rather easy to wander, and once you get to the National Mall, there is something to do at every turn. Guess what though, I’m not going to talk much about food, so you can skip to the very bottom if that’s all you want to hear about! It was a long long day of exploring the educational sites around the area. I got in extra early on Monday morning, and most of the sights (especially the ones at the various Smithsonian museums) are closed. I walked over to Union Station (2 Massachusetts Ave NE Washington, DC or get out at Union Station on the Red Line Metro) which is both a sight in and of itself, and a good place to drop off luggage if you aren’t checking into a hotel. There is a baggage service (for a fee, in my case I paid 20$ for a medium sized bag for the day) near Gate A on the Amtrak Concourse. It’s a beautiful station, and always buzzing, so it’s worth a visit. Next stop was the Capitol Building, or rather, standing outside of it. It was about 7 am at this point, so everything was still closed, but I kept walking toward the Washington Memorial. If there is anything…

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