Friday, 28 October 2016

A Weekend in Paris

If you live in the South of England and a friend is visiting Paris all the way from the US of A then you kinda have to make sure that you're there to greet them with a vegan croissant and tips on where to find the best chocolate chaud. When that trip also coincides with another friends parent's visit to the continent then this applies doubly and explains why I recently drove to Paris to spend the weekend with Joanna (of Yellow Rose Recipes fame), Randi (I hope you read her hilarious blog), her husband Zach, and her parents Cheryl and Bob.

Whilst Randi and family were still en route to the city of light Nick & I met up with Joanna for dinner at Brasserie 2eme Art. Both this spot and sister restaurant Brasserie Lola are new additions to the Parisian vegan dining scene since my last visit way back in 2011 and what great additions they are. It's not often that you find the vegan spots situated on main streets and bustling corners, blending into the local area, and tempting people with their mood lighting and cosy patio heaters but here we are.

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Artisan Vegan Cheese from Nutcrafter Creamery

Glasgow based vegan cheese co' Nutcrafter Creamery have been on my radar for a while and I finally had the chance to try a couple of their cashew based cheeses whilst I was road tripping in Scotland this summer. I picked up two of Nutcrafter's cheeses from Roots, Fruits, and Flowers in Glasgow; The Decadent, a flavourful, salty, air aged, Scottish dulse infused cheese, and The Essential, their smooth, spreadable, double cream style cheese. I ate them both on Oatcakes next to lochs all over Scotland which made my travels even more delightful.

As a self confessed vegan cheese fiend I obviously needed to get my paws on some more of their cashew cheeses and luckily the lovely peep's at Nutcrafter were more than happy to send some new flavours my way. My package included the The Volcanic, an extra aged black ash covered cheese, and The Indulgent, a fresh chive chèvre, as well as their almond parmesan, and a jar of their delicious cream cheese.

The Volcanic is definitely the best ash coated vegan cheese I've tried. This is probably a personal preference thing but I find that the black ash itself can sometimes be a little too intense overpowering the delicate flavours of the cheese itself but this was spot on and probably my favourite of the bunch.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Confectionary NYC

I fell hard for Lagusta's Luscious long before I ever tried their chocolates thanks to word of mouth and the power of the internet. That may sound strange but chocolate is one of my favourite things and when you do as much vegan foodie research as I do you know where to find the good stuff. After years of gazing at the Lagusta's Luscious website and following their beautiful Instagram feed I tried their chocolate for the first time in June 2014 after winning a voucher at Vida Vegan Con, waiting patiently for my chosen chocolates to ship, and sitting on the doorstep on my Austin Air B&B on delivery day because I knew that everything would melt in the hot Texas sun. 

As soon as I bit into my first caramel I knew was in love, I'd never be satisfied with mediocre vegan chocolates again! 

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

Vegan in New York City

I've been struggling to write about food recently. After volunteering at the refugee camp and writing about my experience there writing about doughnuts and cupcakes seemed tougher than usual. Almost as soon as I got back from France I spent a couple of days catching up with friends, headed to London to march to Parliament Square with Help Refugees, the charity I'd been volunteering with, and the very next morning I was on a plane to NYC. I was excited but feeling pretty guilty that that's just a thing I can do because I happen to have been born in the UK. I didn't get a lot of time to process my experience before flying over here but since I've been here I've been setting aside time for self care; reading books, reading blogs, walking in the park, watching movies, eating all of the foods, and just giving myself time to do these things has reminded me that writing this blog is activism, it's just a different kind of activism! I don't know why I forget this sometimes but I do.

Travelling the world as a vegan can be the best, I know that I've mentioned that the hunt for vegan eats often makes you veer off of well trodden tourist routes and into neighbourhoods that the average tourist probably doesn't visit and this is no different in Hanoi, Budapest, or NYC. I've found it to be true everywhere. Brooklyn Whiskers is one of these spots and you need to venture deep into Bushwick if what you want is a top notch vegan danish.

As you can tell by the name the people who set up this cafe are really into cats, even their biscuits are kitty shaped and you must check out the bathroom if you're a cat person!