CSI Coffee Pub – Coffee Monday – Another Indie Coffee Passport stop

This weekend and last weekend, JC & I went to the CSI Coffee Pub. The first time we weren’t armed with our Indie Coffee Passports (I should really just keep that in my purse…), but we were in the neighbourhood because of the APieCalypse Now! Grand Opening and it seemed like a good spot to meet up. The Coffee Pub was on our radar almost entirely because of the ICP & I can see this spot turning into a semi-regular hangout. There is ample seating, it’s warm, inviting, and the baristas are friendly. (Also, as an added bonus, there is wifi, and workspace – both for individuals and groups.) I think I’ve been in this space before, but for a python class with Ladies Learning Code, or helping to photograph one of the LLC sessions some time in the last few years. It might also just be that it feels very CSI (Centre for Social Innovation.) People with computers, people with ideas, it was quiet every time I’ve gone in, but it still seems to be full of energy. They brew coffee from the Fresh Coffee Network, and on the days I went in were using So Nice soy milk (and they also have almond milk). There is no extra charge for dairy alternative. What’s on offer? The first visit, I just got a soy latte (no indie coffee passport means anything goes). And it came in a giant mug. This weekend, JC & I shared a cortado and a cappuccino.…

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Things I Love Thursday – APieCalypse, Coffee, Snow, Etc.

This week has just flown by. I’m actually surprised it’s already Thursday, but it’s the time again. Things I Love Thursday! Weeee! APieCalypse Now! If you’ve vegan in Toronto, I’m sure you’ve heard, but in case you haven’t, APieCalypse Now! Vegan Bakery opened this weekend in the Annex. After having some trouble with old pipes and Toronto’s own experience with the Polar Vortex, JC & I finally got to really dig in to some delicious APieCalypse treats on Saturday during their grand opening. My pal Nicole did a great overview of the new bakery and space on her site (and I agree with everything she said), so I wont go into too much detail on the space other than the logo is amazing, and everything looks delicious. I got a bunch of yummy stuff, and was thrilled at the quality and service. (& I reviewed it on yelp) I’m really excited that there is a place that I feel 100% confident that serious thought has gone into making each item ethical, beautiful, and delicious. When I buy things, I spend a lot of time thinking about my purchases and how they impact humans and non-human animals, and I feel like I can really trust the effort that’s been put into making these products happen. One more thing I loved were all the free vegan & animal rights info cards (made & designed by the bakery owner) right at the front by the register. I’m planning on checking it out again later…

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BIVY – Indie Coffee Passport 2013 – Coffee Monday

We went into BIVY on Sunday this weekend. It’s one of the cafes on this session of the Indie Coffee passport. It’s another one of those spots that has only been open for less than three years. They opened in mid-July 2012 in the Brockton Triangle/Brockton Village area. They do food, coffee, and weekend brunch. It felt like more of a restaurant than coffee shop (or as they say an “Urban Food Outpost“), but they didn’t seem to mind us only ordering coffee. Service was super friendly, the latte was totally my style (but JC didn’t dig it as much as I did.) There are a bunch of options for their Indie Coffee Passport offerings, but we went with the usual – soy latte. BIVY appears to have their own Bivy Collective espresso blend, which I really liked. The latte had a nice thick foam, and the coffee had a rich full flavour. They also sell a variety of products in the back corner, like my favourite chocosol chocolate, stasis preserves, Social coffee & tea bags, cup cozies, and a bunch of other things that I no longer remember. Overall, I really liked the space, it was warm, inviting, and as an added bonus they have wifi (that they even invited us to use.) Vegan menu options seem fairly limited – to potentially nonexistent (unless you count salad,) though you might want to ask about the soup (according to the website the soups are always dairy-free). In case you’re curious, the…

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The Day We Got Married

Yesterday was the 3rd anniversary of the day JC and I met for the first time. It just feels appropriate to post all about the day we sealed the deal (besides, it’s Thursday, so this is definitely one big Thing I Love). Let me tell you about our wedding in October. If you want to have a general run down of vegan wedding related stuff, please check out my posts for 2013’s VeganMoFo This is going to be long. Phew. —– The funny thing about writing a wedding post nearly 4 months later is that in retrospect everything seems better than it did in the days immediately following the big day. Now, I’m tempted to sugar-coat everything into a wonderful fairy tale wedding story where everything happens exactly like we dreamed it would, and nothing went wrong. I want to tell you that it was perfect. I do. But do you need to read about another beautifully perfect wedding story? There are enough out there I’m sure. Our wedding wasn’t perfect. Most things aren’t, but it was beautiful, and meaningful to us. We worked together to make an experience that was significant to us and our families. And I think we did the best we could with what we had control over – ourselves. While we were standing under the chuppah, in front of our friends and family, I felt like I was watching us standing there holding hands. It was like a dream. Here was my favourite person on…

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i deal coffee on Sorauren – Indie Coffee Passport Stop – Coffee Monday

We’ve been working our way through the Indie Coffee Passport but I’ve only gone back to one of the spots repeatedly, and it’s this one. Of course – it’s also somewhat in my neighbourhood so that helps. i deal coffee on Sorauren Ave was once called Balluchon. Now, It’s basically the same place, but better. Overall, I like the atmosphere, I like the staff, and I feel comfortable sitting around for an hour or so with my coffee or tea, or muffin, or whatever. It’s off the beaten (walking) track, but there are usually a couple people sitting inside, and a few people coming in and picking up coffee or bread to go. The staff is friendly. Service has been nice every time I’ve gone in. Every one of the folks that works there seems to be decent, knows how to make a coffee, and i deal coffee seems to have a really good team going on. I guess that’s why I keep going back for more. 221 Sorauren Ave is also home to Prairie Boy Bakery, so there are almost always fresh loaves of bread available. All prepared sandwiches I’ve seen when I’ve walked in have had cheese or meat on them, but vegan baked goods (cookies or muffins) are usually available. They have a variety of loose-leaf teas and coffees, both in bean form and immediately drinkable. They also have soy and almond milk at no extra charge if you are anything like me, and want your coffee a…

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Things I Love Thursday – Things and More Things.

Another week, another TILT. I feel as though I’ve been doing fairly well reflecting on all the things I love every week. I might not always post something, but it’s always on my mind. I did something last night that filled me with joy. I’m not going to say what it is, but it did involve random acts of semi-anonymous kindness. Sometimes when I’m feeling upset I want nothing more than to do something for someone else. The reasons are of course at least partially selfish though, because it feels so good to know that someone is slightly better/happier/etc because of something I did. Just a little thing, but it makes my life fuller to help. Last week I took a brief trip to London, Ontario, and I loved grabbing lunch with a PPK pal Ms. Naked Vegan Lunch, at Veg Out, and having fantastic conversation. I loved stumbling upon an AMAZING mural in downtown London. This is totally one of my favourite things from last week. It’s the Stephen Watson Memorial Mural. So colourful! So beautiful. And the most amazing thing is that I didn’t know it was there before I got there, and I wasn’t looking for it. I just started walking.around the city after my lovely lunch, and there it was. I was attracted by the colours and I had to take a closer look. The details were great. Other things I loved this week: Baking cookies Finishing difficult, but satisfying projects. Eating donuts from Through Being Cool: This is…

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Amani Earls – Indie Coffee Passport

We’ve managed to visit a few Indie Coffee Passport stops around the city, but our very very very first one together was at Amani Earls in The Junction. Last month, we opted to walk the hour or so over to the furthest west spot on the Indie Coffee Passport 2013/2014 map on the first day of snow. It was also a good excuse to go outside, and it seemed like the perfect excuse to go to Pho Huong for vegan pho, and visit Bunner’s on their third anniversary. If you’ve seen the vegan restaurant/Indie Coffee Passport stop map I put together, it’s only logical that we would visit both of these places with the Amani Earls trip! Like all of the Indie Coffee Passport participating cafes this year, Amani Earls is a newcomer to the Toronto coffee scene. They opened up in June of last year, and it’s is a cozy, but simple space with lots of large pieces of art on the wall (at least when we went in – there was work by Brice Hall) and some bar style seating at the front, and a collection of tables, benches and chairs in the back. When we walked in, there was one person typing on a computer in the space, and the server – but of course, it was a Decemblizzard, so barely anyone was outside. They have a variety of the usual cafe coffee options – espressos, Americanos, lattes, cappuccinos, macchiatos, and teas. I noticed they were brewing…

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Things I Love Thursday – Soy milk at Tim Hortons, probably other stuff.

I mentioned this on Facebook, but earlier last week a friend us a picture from the new Tim Hortons in Liberty Village. A Tim Hortons location with soy milk. I wasn’t able to go check it out for myself until yesterday where JC and I have a standing Wednesday lunch date. The same friend that passed on the news initially, said that there was a new sign. A less exciting sign, but we opted to check it out anyway after lunch. We walked over to the Liberty Village Tim Hortons and saw the sign our friend was talking about. See what I mean? Neither of those interest me. I wondered if the soy was gone – so I asked, and the manager just happened to be there, and we asked about soy and they had a bunch (in case you’re curious, they’re using Silk Original flavour). He mentioned that their location, as well as a couple of others, were doing the soy thing independently. Corporate was okay with it, but not making it a regular thing (yet.) So of course, I got an iced capp. Post by Vegan In Your City. It’s sort of surprising to me that I would even write about Tim Hortons, the grand corporate entity that still dominates the Canadian coffee market. In all honestly, I am more likely to walk over to Balzac’s or Uma when I feel like getting a cup of tea or coffee, since I like the feeling of going into a…

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Cabin Fever Collective – Indie Coffee Passport 2013/14

You might have seen my post on this year’s Indie Coffee Passport <3 Edition, what’s new this time around, and my map of Vegan Eats paired with Indie Coffee Passport locations. Cabin Fever Collective on Bloor was my first stop on the Indie Coffee Passport list in December of last year (p.s. that’s 2013.) I was trying to buy a few passports for JC and myself, as well as JC’s brother & his partner for our annual family gift exchange, but several of the coffee shops I stopped into were all sold out. I called Cabin Fever, and… success, they still had a few left. And they took cash, debit, and credit. Perfect. For me the biggest benefit of Cabin Fever is that they’re close to me, I know, that doesn’t help you, but I really like it. It’s about a ten minute walk to Bloor, and then, there it is. If you’re taking transit Keele Station is the closest subway stop, but it’s also reasonably close to Dundas West Station. On my first visit, I met one of the owners (who is very friendly) he runs the place with his wife, he told me that they’d been open for almost exactly one year. Their space seems to focus on records, tea, art, coffee, and other creative paraphernalia (& in that order). They have a couple of bookshelves near the entrance with some really cute or interesting products, one of which was locally made and vegan-friendly Baked Soap Co. As…

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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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