Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Vegan eating out, Boston, MA

I had the opportunity to travel up to Boston, MA, earlier this month for the annual NCTM (National Council of Teachers of Mathematics). Rob took a few days off work to accompany me. He wandered around sight-seeing & visiting pubs while I went to sessions each day, and we ate lovely vegan food each evening.
We took the train from DC, and I enjoyed that! It reminded me of my younger days in Europe. We stopped for a bite to eat on the way up to the station, but they mucked up my order. Luckily we arrived a little early, and I was able to pick up a lovely falafel & hummus salad from Pret a Manager. We boarded the train, and tucked into our seats for the overnight trip.

Once we arrived, it didn't take long for me to realize that I love Boston. It is such a great city, with so much history! Before my first session on Wednesday, Rob and I walked the Freedom Trail.

While we were walking, we found this great juice bar, Revolution Juice, in Back Bay. Breakfast! I got a beet & kale concoction that hit the spot.

I went to my afternoon sessions, then met Rob for dinner. Our first night, we chose My Thai, a vegan restaurant in Chinatown, which was on the way from the conference center to the hotel. My Thai is kind of a sketchy looking place from the outside. You have to climb a grungy looking stairwell, but once inside it is spacious, light, and full of live plants. The service was slow, but the food was amazing! I really loved both my summer rolls and the yellow curry. The chocolate cake looked so tempting, but I was too full to order any. 

The next morning, I woke up Rob super early to go for a run with me. Our hotel was half a mile from the Boston gardens & commons, and it was so beautiful to run there.  On top of that, the marathon finish line was just two blocks away, and we could see the preparations for that. With the marathon only a few days away  there were lots of runners out. I was wearing my Baltimore running festival shirt, and saw another runner out also wearing one. We greeted eachother like old friends, and he said "Good luck in the race!" Holy cow! He thought I was running in the Boston Marathon! That means I must look like a real runner! I mean, true, I am signed up for and training for a marathon next fall, but I never imagined someone would assume that a hack runner like me could run Boston! What a compliment!

At the conference on Thursday, I decided to see if I could find any vegan food there in the center. I was in luck! They not only had a nice-looking salad bar, they also had stir fry veggies & tofu! This dish was okay, but hell, it was vegan, and I ate it during a session on kinesthetic trigonometry. 

After many great sessions on Thursday, I met Rob at the nearby Harpoon brewery for a drink and tour. While we were waiting for the tour to start, we ate a beer-boiled pretzel (vegan!) with spicy mustard. Rob said, "Hey, this pretzel is shaped like a B for Boston!" 

I really enjoy this brewery's UFO (unfiltered) series.

Late that evening, we took the T out to Cambridge Squre, and met our young friend, Courtney, who is a vegan and goes to Boston University. We met at Veggie Galaxy, an all vegetarian diner, where everything on the menu could be made vegan. Since I never get to order vegan breakfasts, thats what I was craving. I got a vegan breakfast sandwich, with scrambled tofu, seitan bacon, and dayia cheese. I also ordered a side pancake, because pancakes. The food here was served with abundance. Typical of diner food, it was a little heavy and very decadent. We weren't able to even dent our servings, and took our leftovers for the next day.

It was great fun talking with Courtney. No matter how supportive your family and friends are of your vegan lifestyle, there's nothing like sharing food with another vegan.

Friday morning we went for another run, even though it was raining. This time we stopped at Flour bakery on the way back to the hotel, where they have a smattering of vegan baked goods available each day. I bought a banana muffin, and a chocolate cake muffin. Sorry no pictures. I ate the banana muffin as soon as we got to the hotel, and the chocolate one was in crumbles when I ate it on the train, but trust me, both were delicious!

On the way to my last session, we walked by Cheers (reruns of which we've been watching on Netflix in anticipation of this trip. We're still in the Diane/Coach episodes), but it wasn't open yet. I promised Rob we could go next time we visit, in June.

Outside the train station, there were a number of food trucks, one of which was a Clover Food Labs truck. Clover haas a string af veg trucks around the Boston area. I picked up a chickpea frittata for the train, which was essentially a pita with hummus, falafels, and red cabbage. This was very tasty, and not too messy to eat on the train.

I just loved Boston, and can't wait to go back in June, for my friend Kristin's book release party!

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