Our Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary Visit

This weekend we went and visited Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary in Campbellville, Ontario. It’s only about an hour and a half west of Toronto, and the drive is quite beautiful (especially because you get to go near the escarpment, and because all the trees are painted with red and gold and green.) On the way, we stopped in to grab a coffee at Flying Monkey Bike Shop and Coffee Bar. Which is this great little place on the side of the road that is both bike shop AND coffee bar. They have soy milk for espresso drinks and wifi if you want to stop in before your Esther visit (or for any other reason.) You need to preregister for a tour at Happily Ever Esther and pay/donate $10 per person for admission, which is pretty much the standard rate around Ontario for sanctuaries that charge for tours. Worth it and more. We drove up to the address, and across a narrow bridge, still not quite sure if we were at the right place (our cell phone service doesn’t extend out there either) – but once we started seeing Fairy Pig cards and “beware of attack pig” on the fence, we knew we had made it. There was a great energy on site when we arrived, people from the earlier tour group were just leaving or wandering around the grounds, the Esther crew were setting up for their totally Sold Out thanksgiving celebration this weekend, and there was a fire going.…

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Vegebitez – Oakville – A first visit

We went and visited Happily Ever Esther Farm Sanctuary this weekend, home to the famous Esther the Wonder Pig herself, and on the way back home to Toronto, we stopped over in Oakville to visit Vegebitez, a new vegan and gluten free restaurant. They’ve been open for a few weeks, and I found out about them though an Oakville local’s instagram account, and it just worked out perfectly that we were planning on being in the neighbourhood anyway. First we had 2 mockshakes, I had the Praline, and JC had the Toffee Nut, mine was the best, but he would disagree. Let’s just say, we both got what we wanted. It’s 20 oz of deliciousness, and you might not want to start your meal with it (save it for later maybe?) But I’m not going to tell you what to do. Then we shared a Fritta Pisa – which were sweet corn fritters layered with tempeh ba’cun, topped with red and orange cherry tomatoes, there was some mashed avocado, melty smoked gouda, a slice of lettuce, surrounded with a balsamic drizzle. I ordered the Piñata bowl which had a bunch of great stuff in it: Black Beans, sauteed red and yellow bellpeppers, purple onions, mushrooms, corn, shredded lettuce, a side of salsa, some guacamole, a dollup of sour cream, a crispy cheddar cheeze cracker thing with a few ba’cun bits around. On top of a bed of quinoa. Seemed like a winning bowl, but next time I want to try the Gravy Train.…

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Ottawa – Day one – Cafe My House

Last weekend we drove into Ottawa for the weekend so JC could play in a Magic the Gathering competition, and so I could wander around the nation’s capital and hopefully find a stamp museum. I haven’t been back to Ottawa for nearly a decade, but it’s still one of my favourite places. At least it has been one of my favourite places in theory for years, but despite living a mere 5 hours away in Toronto these days, it’s still the first time I’ve visited. First of all, I have to first mention the lovely time we had at the Marriott in downtown Ottawa on Kent Street. I feel as though my negative hotel experiences, even in places that should be nice, outweigh my positive ones, that it’s worth mentioning. Their web ordering was straightforward, I asked for a feather-free room and got it without any issue, extra foam pillows were brought up, service was friendly and courteous, and the room was lovely. Not super huge or opulent, but just enough to keep us cozy and comfortable. Any suggestions for fun stuff to do and eat in Ottawa? Especially related to #vegan stuff, #zine stuff, & history nerd stuff? I lived in Ottawa briefly about a decade ago. But haven’t been back since. Tell me things. #vegansofig #veganottawa A photo posted by MeShell (@veganinyourcity) on Nov 11, 2014 at 3:31pm PST As we were driving in, I asked folks on Instagram what they’d recommend for us to do or eat…

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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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