So I know I’ve been gone for a while, but that’s simply because I’ve been in Vancouver, BC for the past week! (Look how crazy beautiful that city is)
Instead of doing a review of place by place, I’m going to do a little roundup of all the absolutely awesome food I had!
So when I got to Vancouver, I was starving, I needed food, and I needed something close to where I was staying. I walked down the street to Gorilla Food. They are an all organic, all raw restaurant, with a huge menu! And when I see a menu that large, I usually just ask anyone working what their favorite items are. So I was told to order the Green Glory juice and the Pesto pizza slice. Both were absolutely delicious! I also got a Gorilla Biscuit because of the name (it was also awesome, but I don’t think they know the reference they were making…ha). The slice of pizza was so big it lasted me a meal and a half. I ended up going back a second time for a smoothie and a small bite, both were superb.
The next two days were spent on Vancouver Island, about 2 hours (via ferry) from Vancouver. If you’re looking to get some hiking and outdoor activities if you head that way, go to Vancouver Island. So beautiful, and so much awesome variety in nature.
While I was there, I was a little skeptical of what I would find. I told the tour guide my dietary restrictions, and he took us to Bocca in Nanaimo for some muffins before a long day of hiking. They had lots of gluten free, and 2 vegan muffins to choose from. I had the cinnamon blueberry muffin, which was wheat free as well, and it was pretty good for being from a random cafe. It got me through breakfast, and was a good snack half way through the hike.
I also managed to get myself to a street fair in Parksville, where I stayed for the night. I was so sure that I would have no option for food aside from french fries, alas, I go to this fair and what do I find? A vegan food truck called La Vida Vegan. They travel all around Vancouver Island, and serve delicious tamales, and raw deserts. Definitely a hidden gem.
And on my way back off the Island, I randomly passed another raw restaurant called Power House Living Foods Co. They have two locations in Nanaimo, and a huge menu. Again, I asked for the server’s recommendation, and ordered the Spicy Kelp Noodle Salad, and took the Lemon Energy Ball, the Chocolate Macaroon, and the Nanaimo Bar to go for some snackage later. The woman working their also made herself a smoothie with (I’m trying to remember what she listed) banana, mango, pineapple, hemp seeds, flax, fresh cracked coconut water, and macs powder; she made tons extra and gave everyone eating there a serving for free! It was so delicious and I want to make it myself when I get home.
Back to Vancouver, specifically Granville Island. I hopped on a ferry from Yaletown to the Island for only $4, and by cab, it probably costs only about $15 from downtown. They have a huge public market with lots of pretty good options for strictly plant eaters. There were sushi stands, indian fast food (including some awesome veggie Samosas), and loads of fresh fruit and veggies. I also found a stand outside the market called Lifebites. They make these super delicious banana bites covered in dark chocolate, coconut flakes, and hempseed. A whole bag of them was only $3!
Aside from the public market, I walked around the whole island and found a small coffee shop near the Emily Carr Art School called Agro Cafe. They boasted a huge coffee and tea selection; and, if you happen to walk in a crave a snack, they had quite a large selection of breads, cookies, and raw snacks. I picked up an Energy Ball, made of fruits and nuts, topped with just the right amount of raw cacao powder. So good.
A great breakfast spot I got myself to was Organic Lives. Another raw restaurant, Organic Lives also has a health food store, education center, and holds cooking and nutrition classes regularly! I had absolutely delicious granola, and Alfalfa tea. I also picked up a packet of locally grown Alfalfa powder to make the tea when I get home, a hemp based cookie with almonds and coconut, dipped in chocolate, and I scooped up a bag of carrot and flax based crackers. I ate all the crackers just a few hours after leaving!
The last place I’m going to write about is Bandidas Taqueria on Commercial Drive. This is a place I would’ve never known about had a friend, Danny, not taken me there. This is an awesome, hole in the wall mexican joint with a huge selection of vegan food (the whole place is vegetarian and anything on the menu can pretty much be made vegan by request). They serve breakfast all day, and are open super late! I had an awesome BAKED burrito called the Leona Gayle. Now, I had never experienced a baked burrito. This was (to start) a giant burrito, covered in what I can only describe as some kind of delicious tomato sauce confection, topped with a pretty large dose of daiya, and then quickly baked to what was perfection. It took a lot of will power not to wolf down the whole thing immediately.
Vancouver was incredible. I also didn’t realize how into raw foods the whole area is. I think I ate raw except for 1 or 2 meals. So great! If you have ever thought about visiting the place, do it! The city is absolutely gorgeous, they have great museums, the yoga studios were quite good, the public transportation rules, and everyone there is super nice. Seriously, I wish I could have stayed longer.
Also, I apologize for the lack of photos. I’m trying real hard to get comfortable taking photos of food in public. It’s weird sometimes!
But, now I’m in Seattle for a few more days! Expect lots of updates from my travels!
(websites and info for all the places mentioned are linked throughout this post)