Friday, 30 August 2013

24 hours in Vancouver

After Vida Vegan Con my friend and fellow blogger Randi and I managed to fit in a whirlwind trip to Vancouver, we took the train and a bus which was super fun. The views from the train were beautiful and we both love going on fun train journeys. 

Despite taking along a huge bag of snacks for the ride we were ravenous when we arrived. Our large group managed to get a table at Bandidas Taquiera even thought they were super busy and we set about ordering immediately. We started with a huge plate of Pascale Marc Nachos to share which came topped with vegan cheese, onions, sweet peppers, corn and jalapeƱos on yellow corn tortilla chips. The vegan cheese used here was Daiya and these were suuuuper Daiyaey, something I definitely enjoy on nachos but which was a little much on a plate of enchiladas as Randi discovered. 

After the nachos I moved swiftly on to taco's, you could choose 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 taco's with any of 6 combinations of fillings. Because the nachos were huge and I'd heard the fillings were plentiful I went for four tacos which was just right.

I picked two Wolf & Goat tacos, one Bobcat and a Stella.

The Wolf Goat sounded amazing, hence ordering two, and I wasn't disappointed. They came topped with fresh guac, purple cabbage, pinto beans, fresh red salsa, cheese and sour cream. The Stella was a little more out there for a taco but I loved the combination of fresh spinach, roasted butternut squash, salsa, pinto beans, cheese & sour cream. The Bobcat was almost breakfast tacoesque with it's roasted potatoes, caramelised onions, purple cabbage, pinto beans, cheese, sour cream & roasted salsa. I have to say that I loved them all. I wish there was a taco place with such inventive flavours and great vegan options here in Brighton - if anyone knows of one lemme know!

After a morning exploring the sea wall and chasing a black and red squirrel (yes, black and red! I know!) around a park Randi and I stopped off at Panz to sample their set lunch menu.

Panz is an all vegan Chinese place located in downtown Vancouver and apparently the name translates to Compassion. Each lunch set starts with the daily soup and as I'm the worlds slowest soup drinker I was glad to see that it was a small portion!

I then picked a spring roll, steamed 5 grain rice and tofu with black beans and mixed vegetables.

I loved the presentation of this meal and everything about it was delicious. I especially loved the tofu and black bean sauce dish because all of the vegetables, including aubergine, baby corn, carrot, mange tout and Chinese mushrooms, were prepared beautifully and it didn't seem even a little greasy.

After lunch we walked to Gastown to check out the area and to do the tourist thing at the famous steam clock and on the way we stumbled upon The Juice Truck.

This vegan (at least I'm 99% sure it was entirely vegan) food cart had some delicious looking sweet treats and we couldn't resist a raw cacao coconut bar.

This delicious maple sweetened walnut, raisin and pecan stuffed bar was topped with a delicious layer of coconut flakes and it's probably the nicest raw bar-style dessert I've ever eaten. I was tempted to double back to pick up another one but we were running late to meet someone at Edible Flours and we needed to get walking. As it turns out it's quite a long walk from Gastown to Edible Flours West Broadway location and we gave up halfway, got on a bus and were still about 20 minutes late.

The bakery case was full of so many delicious treats that it was hard to choose what to order.

In the end we picked three things to share, a brownie, a cinnamon roll and a croissant. My favourite had to be the brownie, what can I say, I heart brownies and this one was super gooey and had the much sought after crackle top.

My favourite thing had to be the brownie, what can I say, I'm a sucker for a great brownie and this one was super gooey and had the coveted crackle top. As if this place wasn't already red enough the lovely owner gave us a fresh-from-the-oven peanut butter cookie to share, no charge. How awesome!

This became my joint favourite Edible Flours treat, I love a freshly baked cookie and this was up there with the best of 'em. I'll definitely be re-visiting this vegan bakery if I end up in Vancouver again, delicious baked goods in a fun, friendly establishment. What more could you wish for?

Whilst we were at EF we got chatting to a dude who was also travelling and reviewing vegan restaurants and we ended up bumping into him at our choice of dinner spot, 3G, so random!

As a massive mock meat fan 3G was right up my street and I dived right in with an order of Vegetarian Chicken Drumsticks fried with pepper and salt. I loved these and if they were on sale at a place near my house I might just eat them all the damn time.

My main was equally delicious, I ordered the Fresh Bean Curd Sheet with Broccoli and Mushrooms. Three of my favourite foods in one dish, how could you go wrong?

This came with a side of perfectly steamed brown rice and was one of my food highlights of the whole trip. The bean curd was beautiful and tender and the broccoli still had that perfect crunch to it. It was such a great meal and as I often think when travelling, I wish it were closer!

I'd never been to Canada before and I was really glad we made it even though it was for a super short time, don't worry though Canada I think I'll be back!


  1. Ah! Vancouver! Though I live in Chicago currently, Vancouver is where I was born and raised! I can't believe you tried to walk from Gas Town to Edible Flours that is quite the walk, I mean wow! Too bad you didn't take the skytrain from Granville Street to Broadway, and then you could have hopped the bus right down Broadway to the place, or walked, though even from the skytrain it's a far walk to EF.

    I love Bandidas! I've been there a couple of times the Wolf and Goat and Bobcat are amazing! Haven't tried the Stella yet.

    I actually haven't made it to Panz, or 3G yet, there are just so many good Veg places to choose from in Vancouver it's always hard for me to decide. There's another great Asian Veg place on Kingsway called Po Kong. Also the Vegan Pizza House on Kingsway is great too, and Eternal Abundance on Commercial =)

    There are also some great places in North Van and West Van, and a few cool places in the burbs too =)

    Glad you had a good trip, and that my home-city treated you kindly :)

  2. You seriously impress me with how many places you manage to visit when you travel! Looks like Vancouver's fantastic for vegans- those sweet treats....yum!

  3. Love it! We ate gooood! Didn't we end up getting two orders of those drumsticks?? hahahahha.
    I love that if I ever get around to writing up this trip, it'll be identical to yours. Maybe I should write it in pig Latin or something to differentiate it?
    You forgot to mention that on the train up, fellow passengers failed to turn their phone sounds off! WHO DOES THAT! :)

  4. Woh, those drumsticks look amazing! As does the brownie and the pastries!

  5. Yum! I went to Vancouver as well. Loved the Bobcat, though I had mine as a baked burrito. I went to Panz and had the hot and sour soup and it was mostly just super duper hot hot hot soup, but the tofu and broccoli I had there was great.
    Sad that I didn't make it to Edible Flours, but we found a lot of great places to eat there. So many choices.


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