Monday, June 15, 2015

Will travel for vegan food: Boston book release party!

My friend Kristin Lajeunesse wrote a fantastic memoir about her travels around the country, visiting every vegan restaurant in the U.S., during which time she blogged about the food that was available throughout the country.  
Her book is not just a vegan memoir, but a coming of age story about finding independence and discovering courage within. You can read my review of her book here, and order it from amazon here.

Anyway, Rob and I had the opportunity to go up to Boston for her book release party! We stayed with a lovely couple, Pam & Rob, who shared their Cambridge home with us through AirBnB.

We loved their cat, King Simon. Such a sweetie.
We took the overnight train up, something that I love. Night trains are great because you get to sleep & travel. Even though the sleeping isn't great.
We arrived Friday morning and headed straight to Veggie Galaxy for breakfast! This is an all veg diner, we ate here last April with our friend Courtney. We each got a tofu omlette with house-made vegan cheese. Mine had sweet potato mash and a balsamic glaze, while Rob's had seitan and greens. We went halvsies and shared!
After breakfast, we walked through Harvard Square, and checked out the campus. We had to pay homage to Click & Clack, and looked for their offices in the square, but couldn't find them. Finally, Rob said he was going to ask someone at an information booth, while I stepped into the Curious George shop (Margaret & H.A. Rey lived in Harvard square for many years) to buy post cards for my neices and nephew.  When I came out, we laughed when we realized that the offices of Dewey, Cheetham, & Howe were right above the shop. It's hard to see in the photo...
Next, we had to stop into Sudo shoes, an all-vegan shoe shop! I tried on a nice pair of boots that Rob and I both really liked for dressier occasions, but my eyes kept going back to a pair of water shoes. Finally, I thought to myself, "what do you do more/care more about?" And bought the canoe shoes.

Rob and I have been watching old episodes of Cheers on Netflix (no, we are still in season 3. Diane is still around. Coach is still alive. And it will probably take us a while to progress further, since OITNB Season 3 just came out) and last time we were in Boston, we walked by Cheers, but it wasn't open yet. We had to get a drink there. Rob got a Fisherman's Ale in a dimpled beer mug, and I got a silly drink called a Mayday Malone. Very touristy but fun. We went to the Beacon St. location where the outside opening sequence was shot, but the inside is nothing like it.

Anyway, back to vegan goodness, we had dinner at this really fancy spot, True Bistro. Great, great food. This all vegan establishment really was a cut above. And we lucked out, because I didn't make reservations, and we got the very last table that they seated for the evening. Not only was the food great, but the service was fantastic.
Out waiter let us know that there was one cup of the soup of the day left, so we jumped on that. He brought it out with two spoons. It was a miso mushroom asparagus soup served with bread and olive oil.

Rob ordered the house made ravioli, and I ordered the Thai green curry. The waiter informed me that the curry had a bit of a spicy kick. He wasn't kidding! About halfway through our meals, Rob and I switched plates.

For dessert, we both agreed on splitting the warm chocolate chip banana bread with a scoop of maple pecan ice cream. Wow!

Saturday morning, we had a nice morning at the house, with a breakfast of fruit, cereal, and coffee. Then we went for a run on the minuteman path, which is a great bike/running trail in Cambridge. We also rented commuter bikes this weekend, on which we cruised around. They were a lot of fun.
We took the T out to Fomu, an all-vegan ice cream shop in Allston! I'm a little sad I didn't taste every flavor, but I tasted the avocado flavor and was hooked. The ice creams are all coconut milk based, and their scoops very generous. I tasted avocado, and ordered it. Rob didn't even taste the peanut butter, he knew that was what he wanted.
Before we left, we heard someone order mango habenero, and we had to taste it! It was sweet with a great spicy kick! Even though his belly was full, Rob ordered a scoop of that as well.
Then we scooted over to O2 Yoga, a beautiful yoga studio and vegan cafe just south of Harvard Square. There, not only did we meet Mimi, the owner, who served us sandwiches (I got the North End, a tofu and tapenade on french bread, and Rob got a Choona on Chibtta), but we also met Kristin and her family! We had a great evening! Kristin talked a bit about her writing process, and we ate some vegan cupcakes her mom brought from a bakery in Albany.

Rob has this amazing ability to take fuzzy pictures of every vegan foodie we meet. Kristin joins a long list of other vegans who are in out-of-focus pictures with me.

Sunday, we had a lazy morning, went to the movies & saw Mad Max: Fury Road (Charlize Theron & I have the same haircut!), checked out the Museum of Bad Art, and danced to an impromptu pop up marching band at Davis Square.

We returned to Veggie Galaxy for lunch, where I got the blackened seitan, and Rob ordered the Vegan Ceaser side salad. True to form, we ended up swapping plates.

Sadly, I couldn't eat everything I wanted to try! Clover has a new shop at Central square, Harvard food court has vegan options each day, there are an abundance of vegan food truck options.... sigh.
I did get a midnight vegan burger on the train from the cafe car on the way home. It was okay for a microwaved thing, but I mostly bought it to support veganism!
Not only did I get to eat lots of vegan food in Boston, but I also got to do lots of yoga there. I like being an active human who enjoys walking, running, biking, etc, in new places.
Oh, and we saw the most beautiful gigantic momma swan in the gardens! <3 Boston!
Big thanks to Kristin for such a great weekend! She hooked us up with our stay with Pam through AirBnB, and sent us gift cards to use at Veggie Galaxy, Fomu, Sudo, and True Bistro! 

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