Posts Tagged festival

VeganMoFo: Eat Real 2012

The Eat Real Festival in Oakland has been an annual event since 2009, but I first found out about it last year since a friend was going.  It’s a three-day event with food vendors, a marketplace, demonstrations, a beer shed, wine barn, cocktail bar, and DIY contests.  There’s a lot of meat and cheese and animal celebration going on, but if you can avoid or ignore that part it’s a great place for vegans.  All items are $5 or less, so you can try smaller portions of lots of different things.

The festival posted a list of vegetarian items on their website, and Vegansaurus posted a list from an intrepid vegan who went the first night, so I set out Saturday with an idea of what I’d like to try.

I crossed out what I wasn’t interested in and highlighted what seemed the most intriguing.   I knew it was going to be crowded though, so I didn’t set my heart on anything in particular.

I was starving when we arrived, so I got the first vegan thing I saw, a bowl from Plum.  I was dubious of how all those ingredients were going to work together, and happily discovered that it was delicious.  The vadouvan curry broth was intensely flavorful, and the fresh veggies on top kept it from being to heavy.

It was really hot outside (September seems to be the height of summer around here), so I was seeking out something light and cool for my next dish.  Luckily, we stumbled upon Miss Pearl’s, who was offering marinated black eyed pea salad.  The apple cider vinaigrette was tangy and perfect on the peas and corn.  Plus, only two dollars!

Next up were sweet potato tots with spicy mango ketchup fro Little Green Cyclo.  I think sweet potato tots were less ubiquitous a year ago than they are now, and I needed them.

I was starting to get a little full, so we headed to the beer shed for some liquid refreshment.  They had a great selection of local beers.

You pay a few more dollars for the first beer and get this adorable mason jar to drink out of and take home.  I still use it all the time!

Hodo Soy is a local tofu maker, and I was so glad to see them representing at the festival.  (If you keep up with your vegan news, you may already know that Chipotle is now making vegan burritos using their Sofritas all over California.)  I tried the Kale Pesto Yuba, which I assume is kind of a play on pasta.  The yuba was a little chewy but definitely seemed pasta-esque, and the only fault I found with this dish is that it could’ve used a little more salt.

hello, gorgeous

Before we left, I HAD to get an ice cream sandwich from Big Wheel Cookie Co.  They were running out of lots of their cookies, but luckily they still had the vegan option – dark snickerdoodles with coconut-based chocolate ice cream.  So good.  The cookies were very sturdy and nicely spiced, and the ice cream was generously portioned, a perfect end to a hot day.

Eat Real 2013 is less than two weeks away, and I can’t wait to go knowing that there will be plenty for me to try!  The only thing I regret missing last year is bao from The Chairman, and I see they’re going to be back this year.  I’ve also got my eye on Hella Vegan Eats, Homeroom, No No Burger, and Rice Paper Scissors.

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Vegan Food & Beer Fest 2012; VeganMoFo 2013

So, VeganMoFo is in September this year.  I thought about signing up over a month ago, and I even came up with a fun theme.  And I meant to plan for it and cook ahead in order to be prepared, then I realized I just didn’t have the time so I sadly decided not to sign up.  Just now, I looked at the backlog of photos from the last year that I’d love to write about and realized I ought to do it, even if my posts are totally random and sometimes very short.  So, I’ve done it!  VeganMoFo here I come!  My goal is to post every weekday in September.

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I know that Vegan Food & Beer Festival 2013 already happened and it was bigger and better than the year before, but I was lucky enough to attend in 2012 and I have to post about it!  When I first found out it was planned for three days before my birthday I asked Dave if we could go as my birthday present, but we decided that it was too far away and too much money to go to LA just for one day.  Then Dave’s sister, whose birthday is a few days after mine and lives in LA, invited us to her birthday party at Marina Del Rey that evening.  Serendipity!  We decided to drive down that morning, go to the beer fest, clean up, go to the boat party, crash at a hotel, then drive back the next morning.

We left at 6AM in hopes to get to the festival by 1, but traffic is always hellish getting into LA, and we had to drop the car off at the hotel and get a cab back to West Hollywood.  We got there closer to two and were starving, so we headed to the closest and fastest food source, The FrankenStand, which has the cutest logo ever.

It was a premade sausage (Tofurky, I believe), but that’s okay!  They had lots of homemade toppings and interesting condiments to choose from, which made it especially tasty.

With some food in our stomachs, we quickly developed a system.  Dave wasn’t that interested in trying all the different foods, so he went and got beer samples for us while I waited in line for food, and boy were there lines!  I really wanted to try Seabirds, but the line was just too long.  Since we arrived late and our time was limited, I basically stood in line then ate, then stood in line then ate…

Next, I headed to the Doomie’s Home Cookin’ tent for their barbecue seitan sandwich. which was perfect for such a warm day.  The sandwich was on the smaller side, as were most of the offerings at the festival, which made it easy to try lots of different things.

I couldn’t resist trying their chocolate covered bacon too.  It started melting right away, but it was really interesting; the bacon was extremely salty next to the sweet chocolate.  The bacon part was a little chewy, and I think it might’ve worked better if it was crunchy.

Next up was Plant Food for People and their delicious jackfruit tacos.  They came with a choice of two sauces, and I believe this was chipotle cream and green chile salsa.

I was getting pretty full by this point, but I can’t pass up vegan southern food!

Sadly, by that point in the day they were out of most everything except the mac and cheese, and it wasn’t my favorite.  Even though it was super hot outside, the cheesy shreds were clumpy and not melted.  I’m sure I would’ve liked their other food if I had gotten there earlier!

I couldn’t eat another morsel at that point, but I also couldn’t resist getting some baked goods to go from Amanda’s Bakery.  I ate them the next day on the way home.

Apple stuffed donut!  I don’t think I have to say that it was delicious…

I believe this was a maple crumb cupcake.  (This is the problem with not blogging about something for over a year!)  Whatever it was, I do remember that it was really delicious.  The frosting looked lovely before it sat overnight and came on a road trip 🙂

Although it was hot and crowded and there were long lines for food, we really enjoyed the festival and I would definitely recommend it to anyone who can go!  I hope the event keeps going and growing and would love to go back someday myself.

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