JC and I are in Edmonton now. Our trip on Air Canada was uneventful, and food less. They promote a vegetarian panini, with red pepper hummus, but failed to have it on the flight. Vegan options are next to non-existent in their “On Board menu” so it was almost exciting to see something vegetarian (beyond the usual nuts or potato chips) mentioned. No such luck.
They could totally hook us up with a roast beef baguette though, oh boy. I think if demand is high enough that they sell out of things like these, then maybe they should cut down on the roast beef, and increase the number of vegetarian options they carry (since more people can enjoy those.) But I’m biased, of course.
Anyway, It’s been nearly two years since I’ve been back to Edmonton, and I’ve been looking forward to it. Edmonton is a really special city, and I appreciate the memory of it quite a bit. It doesn’t get enough credit for the quality community and city it is. I love Toronto, but Edmonton will always have a piece of my heart. Lots of green space, the river valley is amazing, the public parks are awesome and loved, bike trails, an art gallery that looks both unique and ridiculous, and a city powered by passionate volunteers (that when I was in the province, did so because they wanted to, not because it was mandated as part of the school curriculum like it is in Ontario.)
It also sounds like a lot has changed since I was last there. The month or two I “came back” to Edmonton after finishing university, wasn’t really enough, to explore, but as I’ve learned, vacations are a great way to explore a city and see it in a different light (normally positive).
As usual, I’m putting together a list of ideas, and hopefully, we’ll get to some of them.
Resources I used for Edmonton:
- Vegetarians and Vegans of Alberta - Has a diners guide available on their website.
- Happy Cow
- PPK Forums - Edmonton specific
- My old blog posts circa Prairie Vegan time.
Time specific events:
Taste of Edmonton - One day left – Saturday July 28th
This event has rarely been very vegan friendly, or wallet friendly, but it is a great experience, and it does have over 40 Edmonton restaurants participating. It started on July 19th and goes on until Saturday July 28th, in Sir Winston Churchill Square.
The Downtown Edmonton City market on 104th Farmers Market – Every Saturday.
The Market happens every Saturday, it features lots of great veggies, and word is there are vegan cookies every week (from Bloom Cookie Co.) Some of my fondest Edmonton memories happened at or on Farmers’ Market days, so it will be nice to catch a day with JC.
Old Strathcona Farmers Market – Saturdays
This market has the benefit of being close to Whyte Avenue, Planet Organic, and reasonably close to Earth’s General Store. There used to be lots of great and interesting vendors, but I know many of them have moved on.
Heritage Days Festival – August 4th – 6th
This is one of my favourite events, and I miss it a lot. An event dedicated to celebrating and showcasing Edmonton’s Multiculturalism. 62 pavilions with food, fun, and entertainment. We are leaving on Saturday, so I don’t know if we’ll make it, but I certainly hope so!
Restaurants / Cafes / Brunch
- Padmanadi (10740-101 Street, Edmonton, Alberta) – Last time I was there, they had vegan brunch.
- Clever Rabbit Vegetarian Cafe (10722 124 St NW, Edmonton, Alberta)
- Noorish (8440 109 St, Edmonton, Alberta)
- Remedy Cafe (2 locations: 8631-109 St NW, Edmonton, Alberta and downtown at 10279 Jasper Ave, Edmonton, AB) – I went there repeatedly in 2010 for vegan cheesecake.
- Cafe Mosaics (10844 82nd Ave, Edmonton, Alberta) – home of the original vegan brunch in Edmonton
- La Poutine (8720 – 109 Street, Edmonton, AB) - vegan poutine!
- Loma House (9142 23 Ave, Edmonton, Alberta) – someone recommended this place, and I realized that they also had several locations in the GTA.
- Earths General Store (9605 82nd Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta)
(They have both The Vegg and Daiya cheese wedges)
Things to see and do.
- West Edmonton Mall – because “where else“
- Graffiti Walk. – The Edmonton Arts Council has a great list of “Graffiti Zones“
- the Edmonton River Valley.
- Whyte Avenue – home to hippie markets, vintage shops, bars-a-plenty, and food food food.
- the Art Gallery of Alberta - Free admission to the AGA on the last Thursday of every month from 6-9 pm.
Any more suggestions or recommendations? I’d love to hear them!