Posts under category: Travel
Vegan Paris: Pre-Trip Planning
Posted on August 11th, 2015 · By admin
It’s been a while since I visited Paris. The last time I visited I was meeting my youngest sister who was living in Barcelona at the time. For some reason, I never truly understood, she refused to visit me in London. Even though she lived and worked in London for many years. I was always ok with that because hey Barcelona is pretty nice. Paris turned out to be a great meeting point as she was there to attend an event for Parsons Paris and, I was there to eat my way through it.
In the past, I’d make at least one trip a year, usually, in autumn. Paris has a lot to offer so it doesn’t matter what time of year you go. There is just so much to do. As Amy Thomas states,“one of the best ways to immerse yourself in French culture is with food.” And I totally agree so as always the focus will be on eating. It’s safe to say that’s what I do best.
I’ll be hopping on the Eurostar Thursday morning and returning on Saturday evening. So, I’ll have to make the most of the three days I have.
Here’s where my online research and pre-trip planning comes in.
The last time I was in Paris Bob’s Kitchen was one of my first stops as it’s not too far a walk from Gare du Nord. It’s not strictly vegan, but vegans won’t have any problem eating at this vegetarian canteen. Get there early, as it tends to fill up quickly, if you want a seat. I do remember being disappointed that they didn’t have any vegan desserts, but I left feeling satisfied after a tasty meal.
Loving Cult, I mean Loving Hut have outlets all over the world, but I only seem to eat there when I visit Paris. Located on Beaumarchais in the 11th arrondissement. A friendly French-Canadian guy runs this branch. If I remember correctly it’s not open all day so check the operating hours before you go. I tend to go for the soups and salads. Loving Hut is a pretty safe, cheap and cheerful bet for the budget conscious.
Le Potager du Maris
Did someone say crème brûlée? This should be reason enough to make your way over to Le Potager du Maris. It’s located on Rambuteau near the Pompidou. Portions look huge from the photos I’ve seen online and can probably feed four. This place is definitely for sharing so make sure you bring friends. According to Happy Cow, it’s been vegan since 2012. Reservations are suggested.
If I want bánh xèo in London I have to make it myself, not so in Paris. Tien Hiang comes recommended as a Vietnamese/Chinese vegan friendly spot that uses no eggs. According to reviews you can request an English menu, which also features set menus. Tien Hiang may not be the place to go if you want a leisurely or relaxed experience. It’s located near metro Goncourt and it’s not far from Republique. They don’t take reservations so you might have to wait for a table.
Le Centre Tout Naturellement
Le Centre Tout Naturellement is a full service spa where you can take a sauna or naturopathic massage, get a facial, and eat a 10 euro set vegan lunch consisting of local, fresh, organic produce. Once you enter the small and quiet courtyard you have to ring a bell to be let in. Located in the 9th arrondissement near metro: Poissonnière.
Un Monde du Vegan
Un Monde du Vegan is a vegan shop selling only vegan products, mostly, made in France. It’s chock- full of all the packaged junk food you could ever want. In addition to ‘boursin style’ vegan cheese you can find supplements, food for cats and dogs, cosmetics, cleaning products, shoes, belts, accessories and a lot more. Located in the 3rd arrondissement near metro: Strasbourg – Saint-Denis.
Carmen Ragosta is a clothing boutique that doubles as a restaurant. It’s a precursor to the hip Hackney combination businesses that are now popping up everywhere. She designs clothes and cooks Italian food for lunch. Everyone raves about the tiramisu, but call in advance for the vegan version. Located in the 10th arrondissment and the nearest metro is Jacques Bonsergent.
Fondation Henri Cartier-Bresson
Unless it rains, I probably won’t have much time for museums on this trip. I have so much eating to do. The Foundation has a few of Cartier-Bresson’s photographs on display so if that’s your main reason for visiting you might be disappointed. If you’re prepared to be surprised (or you can call ahead) the Foundation curates a large number of exhibitions throughout the year with photographers from around the world. Located in the 14th arrondissement nearest metro: Gaîté.
Musée Picasso Paris
The Picasso Museum reopened in October of last year, €22 million over budget and three years behind schedule. It’s definitely worth a visit, but will I have enough time. The exhibition space is now double the size with many more works on display than ever before. I could easily spend an entire day there. Obviously, if the weather takes a foul turn three to four hours taking in the exhibition would be perfect. Located in the Marais in the 3rd arrondissement nearest metro: Chemin Vert.
I could go on and on, but I’m going to leave you here folks. So if anyone ever asks you, “What are you going to eat in Paris?” tell him or her that they don’t know what they’re talking about. “French food isn’t all crème, fromage et beurre!”
Vegan Chicago: Pre-Trip Planning
Posted on June 16th, 2015 · By admin
grilled watermelon_vegan peasant catering
Vegan Chicago: Pre-Trip Planning
When you think of vegan mecca’s Chicago doesn’t exactly come to mind. We tend to think of Berlin, Portland, New York, San Francisco and even London as vegan-friendly world cities. If history is anything to go by Chicago was the country’s largest meatpacking centre and the acknowledged headquarters of the industry and is home to the Chicago Mercantile Exchange live-cattle futures. So you probably won’t be surprised to know that in 1996 The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association sued Oprah when Howard Lyman, ex-cattle rancher and vegetarian activist, appeared on Oprah to tell everyone about the danger of mad cow disease. Oprah was so alarmed she said she would never eat another hamburger every again. As you can imagine the beef industry came down on Oprah like a tone of bricks even though Gary Weber, the trade group’s animal-health and food-safety expert participated in the show. Cattle ranchers everywhere were outraged and literally wanted Oprah’s head on a platter.
Even though Chicago has a not so salubrious reputation when it comes to its meat heavy culture I was surprised to find out that Chicago has the “longest–standing gourmet raw food restaurant in the United States”. Karyn’s Raw Bistro (now closed) located in Chicago’s Lincoln Park. As I dug a little deeper into my pre-trip planning I found out that Chicago is a place with a varied food, art, live music and craft beer scene. There was no way I was going to get to see everything I wanted to see in a week.
First stop Amitabul, a Korean vegan restaurant. If you’ve been following Vegan Peasant you know that Korean food is one of our favourite cuisines and kimichi one of our favourite foods. London doesn’t even have a Korean vegan restaurant and it’s been years since I visited New York’s Korea town. This will really be a treat.
Chicago Diner, from what I can gather this place is pretty much an institution. I’ll try to visit in the week as I get the feeling it will be mobbed on the weekend especially as all the families will be descending on Chicago for Northwestern University’s graduations.
Karyn’s Cooked is part of the restaurant and spa group started by Karyn Calabrese. The reviews on Happy Cow seem to be pretty mixed so definitely won’t do dinner here, but lunch hopefully will be fine.
Green Zebra, a vegetarian restaurant in Chicago’s West Town area, I found on the Vegan Miam Chicago guide. They seem to have a good number of vegan options. When I land in Chicago and have a bit more time I’ll check out the menu, as it might be a good idea to call a headfirst if the vegan options seem a little thin.
Uru Swati, we love South Indian food so it will be a treat to eat from a completely vegan menu. London has no shortage of Indian and South Indian restaurants so it will be great to see what Chicago has to offer.
Trader Joe’s started out in California and has now spread like a virus across the United States. For the uninitiated it’s a chain of ‘gourmet’ food stores selling packaged foods, re-branded products and their own brand products. A trip to Trader Joe’s is obligatory even if I’ll probably just end up walking around and around the store only to walk out empty handed. Some people are evangelical when it comes to Trader Joe’s me not so much.
Whole Foods has everything and then some. I probably won’t find much that’s new as I visited a West Palm Beach WH in December. As long as the have my favourite sunshine burgers, uncheese popcorn and gelato I’m good. I’m not really into mock meats, but I guess I should at least give Upton’s Naturals a try as I’ve heard so much about them. What I’m really looking forward to are all the summer fruits: grapes, berries, watermelons, pineapples, mangos, peaches and passion fruit.
Join us in Mallorca for a vegan cooking class
Posted on February 1st, 2015 · By admin
Pumpkin Toffee Cheesecake – photo credit Mariona Otero
You are invited to attend a Warrior Weekend class at Sabor Vegan Academy, Palma, Mallorca with professional chef, Adrian G. Smith and Diana Pinkett. The class, on Saturday February 28 from 10am – 4pm, cost 35 euros online and includes all ingredients. The deadline to sign up for the class is Friday February 27th for more information please click here.
The class promises to teach easy gourmet and vegan cooking using accessible ingredients. Attendees will learn how to make dishes including:
Beetroot Falafel with Horseradish Cream, Micro Mizuna & Dill
Truffled Parsnip Puree on a Rösti Potato with English Parsley
Broadbean & Mint Hummus, Carrot, Rocket & Coriander Vinaigrette on Rye
Participants will enjoy all creations during the session.
The vegan cooking class is approximately 6 hours in length.
Space is limited so reserve your spot as soon as possible.
These classes are designed for participants of all cooking levels.
Come and meet like-minded new friends or bring along a partner to share your experience!
Vegan Berlin – Part 3
Posted on January 1st, 2013 · By admin
Vegan Berlin – Part 3
Guest post from Rosemary and Dan Howe.
Reading Diana and Adrian’s Vegan Berlin blog posts, part one and two, got our mouths watering. So with a coupon for a free flight and some spare vacation days to use up before the end of the year, we had no excuse. We booked it to Germany to sample the vegan delights for ourselves. Having visited Berlin last year, we had all the tourist stuff out of the way, and this trip we were able to focus on what’s important: hanging out with friends and stuffing our faces.
Something magical happens at the bars in Kreuzberg, East Berlin’s trendy neighbourhood overrun by tech start-ups, hipsters, yuppies and artsy types. You can plan for an early night and decide to meet for just the one, but the great atmosphere and conversation carries you away and before you know it the lights are on and staff are putting chairs on top of tables. Late nights and slow mornings will require the right sustenance to get you through. Fortunately, in Berlin it is easy to eat vegan. Here’s our suggestion on how to spend a day eating in Berlin.
Brunch at Kopps
Breakfast was the highlight of our trip. At €12.50 it might seem pricey at Kopps, but you’ll definitely get your money’s worth. Berliners apparently are late sleepers, so at 10am we had the buffet feast to ourselves. Rosemary chose a respectable breakfast of “egg” salad, a waffle, potatoes and some vegan meats, while Dan went all out with a three-course dining experience. Starting with a British-style tofu-scramble, potatoes and baked beans plate before moving on to servings of veganised traditional German breakfasts and ending with a breakfast-desert plate of waffles, pancakes, soy yogurt and mysterious sweet creams. It was ridiculously delicious and made us want to crawl back in to bed.
Lunch at Yellow Sunshine
Yellow Sunshine is a cute vegetarian diner right near our rented apartment, serving organic fast food. We had a double chicken cheese burger and the fakin’ fish burger. The selection of patties and fake meats under the glass counter looked intriguing, and we wished we had the stamina to make our way through the menu to sample them all.
Yoyo for Dinner
Following the Vegan Peasant recommendation, we swung by Yoyo
for dinner. We split a vegan gyro, Hawaii burger, which had pineapple and cheese and some nuggets with a banana smoothie. The café was busy and it had a great community feel. It got us thinking about the many vegan shops, cafes and restaurants in Berlin. Why can’t London, a much larger city, support as many vegan businesses? What is it about East Berlin that has the vegan community so thriving?
End the day at Goodies, an omni coffee shop, with vegan cakes so good they’ll send you into a coma.
Our trip to Berlin was one of excess. Thankfully, Berlin is such a friendly walkable city that we were able to balance out the gorging with hikes exploring side streets and riverside trails. For any vegan that loves to eat, Berlin is the perfect citybreak destination.
Vegan Berlin – Part 2
Posted on November 8th, 2012 · By admin
As promised here’s part two of our September trip to Berlin. In case, you missed it the first time – Vegan Berlin Part 1
Vegan Berlin – Part 2
Viasko by the time we made it to dinner it was already dark. We sat at an outside table under an umbrella, sheltering from the evening’s drizzle. I can’t remember if this is the reason we have no photos to show you now or if we just decided to not take any photos as we thought they would look pretty crap, as we’d have to use the flash. I can tell you that Adrian and Patrick both had the Seitan dish with Red Wine Jus then the and Tiramisu for dessert. The jus was too strong and salty and the cream was too heavy for the tiramisu. Kristina and I had the pasta dish and I don’t remember what we had for dessert. The staff was very cordial and the space was very cosy. I can’t give Viasko a raving review, but it’s worth checking back as the menu changes weekly.
Viasko, Erkelenzdamm 49, 10999 Berlin Kreuzberg
Café Vux makes the most sublime cakes. As you can see from the pics below, we tried a nice selection including Lemon Poppy Seed Cake, Coconut Cheese Cake, Plum Cake and a Carrot Cake. I also ordered a tall soy latte. It was good going down and I don’t regret it, but I won’t do it again as I’m allergic to some soy milks. The space feels like a gallery, but in a good way. The cakes are kept in temperature-controlled displays. You wouldn’t be able to tell the difference between these vegan cakes and non-vegan cakes. Believe me, they are all delicious. They also sell cupcakes, soups, smoothies and bagels. The café is located in the Neukölln area, which is a little farther from the center, but this place is not to be missed.
Café Vux, Richardstraße 38, 12034 Berlin Neukölln
Poppy Seed Cake
If you need more of an incentive Sfizy Veg is in the same neighborhood as Café Vux, which presented a bit of a dilemma for us as it meant we had to eat our dessert before dinner. Oh well, no biggie. Sfizy Veg is the first 100% vegan pizzeria in Europe. The menu has 130 varieties of pizza in addition to calzones, pastas, paninis, salads, ice cream, fresh juices and smoothies. The pizzeria being packed, when we arrived and the crazy long menu with more pages than a small book, worked in our favor, but I still couldn’t finish my pizza. Adrian was more than happy to oblige.
Sfizy Veg, Treptower Straße 95 12059 Berlin Neukölln
Sfizy Veg Inside
Artichoke, mushrooms, ‘ham’, olives – pizza
Walnuts, rocket and something else – pizza
Yes, it’s true Berlin is everything you’ve heard and then some. Über clubbing city, dynamic arts scene, rents cheaper than in almost any major comparable European or Western city and great cycle track infrastructure that makes it a joy to ride a bike. I think they call it – Freude am Fahrradfahren.
Perhaps, we can add contender for vegan foodie paradise to that list too.
Gelato – Fräulein Frost in Friedelstraße
The Soviet War Memorial -Treptower Park
Posted on October 18th, 2012 · By admin
September was a busy month for the veganpeasants. We catered Sea Shepherd’s 35th Anniversary Fundraiser at Bush Music Hall. A lovely wedding that took place at Chaucer Barn, Norfolk. Another wedding that included a group of vegans, vegetarians and two guests with a gluten intolerance who embarked at Lambeth Pier for a reception party.
We also had the pleasure of being hosted by Kristina and Patrick, who have moved back to Berlin. Our mission was to eat our way through Vegan Berlin.
Vegan Berlin – Part 1
I should mention that this was not our first trip to Berlin. In the summer of 2008, we spent a weekend in Berlin back when we were active Couchsurfers. As we arrived in the middle of the day, we decided to meet our host at a Russian Tea Room that he and another Russian friend had opened not to long before. The tea menu was a book so we just let our host, the tea master, choose the teas for us as we watched him meticulously check the temperature, measure the tea and explain the various properties of the tea, like you would a fine wine. We didn’t have a chance to visit this time, but if you’re heading to Berlin check out Tee – und Kunsthaus Tschaikowsky
Käthe-Niederkirchner-Straße 15, Prenzlauer Berg
Tue-Fri 5 p.m.-midnight; Sat-Sun 2 p.m.-midnight
I don’t think it’s an exaggeration to say that Berlin is a paradise for vegans; especially those that love to eat. Every year more and more vegan eateries open, but even if you are eating at a non-vegan establishment they seem to have at least one or two vegan, not just vegetarian, options.
First things first
Before we arrived, Kristina and Patrick organized our bike hire. There was no way we were going to get from one end of the city to the other on foot. We only had three full days so we had lots of ground to cover.
Velomondo Fahrräder, Neukölln
As you would expect just like in Barcelona Berlin has many bike hire places. Velomonde also doubles as a workshop.
Pannierstr. 13, Neukölln
We cycled over to OHLáLá, a French patisserie that serves vegetarian and vegan food, in Friedrichshain, but they were closed L. Closed and not opening until 18th September. I thought Europeans took August off for the holidays. Shame, I was so looking forward to this, as there is no place in London to get great vegan patisserie.
So, no tarts for breakfast then.
Ohlàlà V Tarte
OH La La Closed
OHLáLá V Tartes
Mainzer Straße 18, Friedrichshain
Next stop Cupcake
Cupcake Berlin is not 100% vegan, but they do have a selection of vegan cupcakes. We sat down to a breakfast of tea, coffee and cakes. I ordered a cupcake with blueberries on it and Adrian order the one with a peanut butter frosting. Kristina ordered a huge brownie. I could barely eat half of my cupcake, but Kristina polished off her entire brownie.
I found the cupcake to be dry and the frosting too sugary and grainy. They are not a patch on Ms. Cupcake, I’m afraid.
Krossener Str. 12, Friedrichshain
We arrived at Yoyo Foodworld an hour after we left Cupcake Berlin. This was all my doing as I insisted in trying a Currywurst. Anyway, we had a vegan food eating mission to accomplish, remember. Kristina did suggest that I try a veggie burger instead as this is what Foodworld are know for. Let me say the Currywurst it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. Gladly, Adrian and Kristina were on hand to help me finish it. See the photo below. Enough said.
Gärtnerstr. 27, Friedrichshain
We took a break from eating and headed over to the East Side Gallery. Well for two and a half hours, anyway then we made our way to Canadian Pizza.
Ron Telesky Canadian Pizza Dieffenbachstr 62, Kreuzberg
Canadian Pizza usually have one or two vegan pizzas by the slice on offer, but they sell out quickly so if you are happy to hang tight he’ll make you a pizza pie to your specifications. Can’t remember what we ate because in true veganpeasant fashion we ate the pizza before we could take any pics. Take my word for it they were delicious with or without the hot chilli maple syrup.
Ron Telesky Canadian Pizza
Canadian Pizza Berlin
I’ll leave you here as I’m getting kind of full. If you want more vegan Berlin, you’ll have to wait for part 2.
Vegan Berlin Part 2
Next up Viasko, Café Vux, and Sfizy Veg
Barcelona Part 2
Posted on September 4th, 2012 · By admin
Part one of our Barcelona travel post was all about the delicious vegan food. Part two focuses on hiring a bike, various neighborhoods to check out and the beach.
Barcelona Part 2
The only way to get around Barcelona is by bike. Before the proliferation of bike hire companies you had “El Bicing” (pronounced “bee-sing”), which tourists and locals could use alike. The bike scheme was a huge success, but many of the bikes were not maintained well, were not put back in the docks and some even went missing. So now, you can only use the Bicing if you are a resident of Barcelona. Which is a shame really as the convenience of being able to drop off and pick up a bike from any of the 420 bicing stations is pretty cool. Inconvenience for some brings opportunity for others because when I last checked there were at least fourteen bike hire companies in Barcelona and I’m sure there is room for more. We rented bikes from Barcelona Rent a Bike – www.barcelonarentabike.com as the nearest location, Plaça Catalunya, was just a short walk from where my sister lives. We happened upon My Beautiful Parking – www.mybeautifulparking.com as it was next to Cat Bar and we noticed many other tourists on the orange Budget Bikes – www.budgetbikes.eu
Rent a Bike Clipper Ship Barcelona
After picking up the bikes we headed straight for the beach. The idea was to get there before mid-day when the sun is at it’s strongest. I took my sandals off and walked along the shore. It was nice to have the cool water lapping at my ankles, but when we were ready to head back to the promenade I could barley stand to walk across the sand – it was burning hot. While you are down at the beach, you should check out Born neighborhood.
Next, we made our way up the hill to Parc Güell. Even though I have visited a few times now, Parc Güell is always worth a trip for the sculpture and the views.
Parc Güell 1
Parc Güell 2
Parc Güell Tile
Parc Güell Tourists
Parc Güell Notice Barcelona
live bronze barcelona
Before you make your way back down you should hang out in Barri de Gràcia as it’s adjacent to Parc Güell. The squares are great spaces to mill around in and if you are lucky musicians sometimes rock up to perform in concert. There is a great Ethiopian restaurant up there too.
As you cycle back down and take Passig de Gracia, you will get to see a few more Gaudi creations on the way.
Keep heading down and you’ll hit La Rambla (there is a Maoz here) turn a corner and you will be in La Boqueria. Last year I visited Barcelona for the Sonar Music Festival. I happened upon Richie Hawtin playing a set in La Boqueria.
I hope I’ve convinced you to hire bikes the next time you head to Barcelona.
Part 1 Barcelona Vegano
Posted on September 2nd, 2012 · By admin
I’m sure you don’t need an excuse to visit Barcelona and neither do as I my youngest sister, Nadine, lives there, sunny weather is pretty much guaranteed and a number of vegan eateries have opened up in the last few months.
C Dels Angels, 3 08001
Veggie Garden is just down the street from the MACBA, which is in a great location with outdoor seating. Rumor has it that Ramesh, who use to work for Juicy Jones, is the owner of this café/restaurant. I ordered a salad and some momos, but if I had known the portions were American sized, I would have skipped the momos, as they were nothing special. This did not stop me from adopting the bad habit of eating most of the food before I had photographed it.
Med Salad_Veggie Garden Barcelona
Japanese Salad_Veggie Garden Barcelona
Momo_Veggie Garden Barcelona
Carrer de la Bòria, 17
08003 Barcelona, Spain
Glops Beer Cat Bar_Barcelona
Lucky Foot? Cat Bar_Barcelona
BOTIGA: Allada Vermelln,
19 I Tantarantana n, 22 – El Born
Was the last place on our eating tour. After Veggie Garden, we visited Cat Bar and Mosquito. You would think we had nothing better do to than eat, but you would be remiss as we tried to visit a few galleries and a bookshop, but no one seems to stick to posted opening times.
Vegan Bakery is near Museu de la Xocolata. It has only been open for a month or two, but it is well worth a stop. Again, I started on the cakes before taking a photo, but you can see why.
Vegan Bakery Entrance_Barcelona
Vegan Bakery Cake_Barcelona
Vegan Bakery More Cake_Barcelona
Vegan Bakery Signage_Barcelona
You’re probably wondering how did they get to so many places in one day? Well, we rented bikes from Barcelona Rent a Bike for a 24-hour period.
Next time you are in Barca, I suggest you do the same.
For more Barcelona highlights.
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