I’ve been to Reno too many times to link to all my posts about it (here’s a link to a blog search), but on this latest trip I made it a point to try to find even more restaurants which were vegan friendly.
To start out my Saturday morning, I went for a run along the Truckee River. There is a pathway along the river which happens to run right through downtown Reno, which made for a really nice run. There were lots of other people out running, biking and walking their dogs. Breakfast was a Larabar and a banana which I had brought with me.
For lunch, I headed to Fairly Grounded Too, which I had read about on Vegan Coaches page about dining in Reno. It’s on Virginia Street a few blocks south of the river, and it’s easy to miss – the sign mostly says “coffee” really big. Going inside, it’s a modern yet cozy coffee shop with plenty of space for you, your coffee and your laptop.
Their sandwiches and salads are premade and none are vegan, but if you ask the nice people behind the counter they will let you know if anything they have that day is vegan. This rainbow vegetable soup was recommended; I don’t know if the have it every day or if it’s a special, but it was delicious. The vegetables were chunky and not overcooked, and there were some interesting spices that I couldn’t put my finger on. It came with a slice of bread, and they actually had Earth Balance for spreading.
I needed a caffeine fix, so I got a soy latte as well. This was one of the best soy lattes I’ve ever had, slightly bitter but not too strong.
The girl also mentioned that the biscotti was vegan. I’m not usually a big biscotti fan, but obviously I had to try it. It was cherry almond flavor, with both almond extract and chunks of whole almond. The biscotti was chewy and crispy at the same time, and very good.
That afternoon I had a massage (heaven), and we decided to embark upon the Reno Beer Crawl, which occurs the fourth Saturday of every month. You buy the glass for five bucks, and can get 6 oz pours at eleven bars for one dollar each. It was really fun, and a great way to explore more of downtown.
After all that beer and walking around, I was in need of some serious fuel. We walked down to Pie Face Pizza, as I had heard a rumor that they had vegan cheese.
The rumors were wonderfully true. Even though it’s not listed on their online menu, they do have Daiya. This is The Resa specialty pizza – sun-dried tomato, roasted garlic, jalapeno, red onion, spinach, pine nuts, Daiya instead of goat cheese. It was spicy and garlicy and melty and I ate the whole thing and I’m not ashamed. Pie Face was a hip and happening place, and I would definitely go back.
Sunday morning I went for brunch at Pneumatic Diner. I had been there once before for lunch, but it was at a weird time of the afternoon and there was nobody else there, so I wanted to go again when they were more busy. I was hoping they would have some sort of vegan breakfasty item like pancakes, but they did not. The menu is massive though, almost too big, so everyone will find something they like.
The breakfast burrito immediately caught my eye, but I think that’s what I ordered the first time I went, so I chose The Vegan Bubba, a sandwich with hummus, red onion, shredded carrot, marinated grilled eggplant and zucchini, and greens. I chose to add the optional “slab”, which is grilled tofu.
Look at all the deliciousness spilling out! This was actually a really tasty and satisfying sandwich, despite its apparent simplicity. It kept me full for a long, long time.
On the way back home, we stopped around 4PM for a late lunch and headed toward a Togo’s, which was in a shopping plaza with not much else. Walking up to the store, something caught my eye. It was a sign in the window of Flour Garden Bakery that said “vegan black bean chili”! Needless to say, I went inside to check it out.
Sadly, they had just put the chili away to freeze (even though it was over an hour until they closed), but luckily they had tofu salad sandwiches on display. The tofu salad was tasty, but the bakery’s sprouted wheat bread was the real standout. It was soft, hearty, and a little sweet, the perfect sandwich bread. If you ever happen to be hungry near exit 199C on I-80, pull over and find Flour Garden. It’s a great feeling to find things marked vegan unexpectedly.
That’s it for this rendition of vegan in Reno. My only regret is that I didn’t get to Freeman’s Natural Hotdogs. There’s always next time!