It’s been too long since I last wrote, but I have a long mental check list of what I want to share. It’s hard to choose what to write about first, but since I’ve had some delicious experiences in the Vancouver vegan scene, I chose that one in case you’re looking for recommendations over the holidays! Vancouver is quickly becoming a hot spot for restaurants that provide alternative food options, and I’m so glad that I live here to experience all of it!
Just a few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of trying the fine dining vegetarian restaurant Acorn for the first time. My parents were in town, and we happened to be in the Main Street area right when 5pm struck and our long-digested brunch was no longer fuelling us. Lucky we were early, because they opened their doors just as I got there, and we got the second to last table. I had heard they didn’t take reservations and there was always a line up out the door, and they meant it! The food was exceptional, very creative – one of those places you take someone who isn’t a vegan and thinks you only eating lettuce and carrots, because they will leave with a great appreciation of the delicious concoctions you can create without animals. A great example of their creativity: olive cake dessert. I don’t know about you, but I’m impressed. They cater to vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, and raw. Wow. I’d recommend the kale/tempeh salad, the king oyster mushroom salad, and the mushroom pate. I had trouble deciding what to get – it all sounded so good (a welcome ‘problem’ to my usual experience of picking the one veggie item on the menu and ordering it without cheese). Try it!
I have to give credit to the Naam – knowing I can have vegan chocolate cake with tofulati at any time of the day makes me very happy! This 24/7 vegetarian restaurant is a Vancouver classic and has been around for ages – for good reason. It’s good home-cooked comfort food, and that miso sauce is to die for – YUM. If they delivered, I’d be in heaven.
Main Street is also home to a great little restaurant called Grub. This isn’t a strictly veg restaurant, but they always have daily specials that include one vegetarian entree and one vegan entree AND vegan dessert (dessert may be my most important criteria haha). It’s has a quaint but hip environment with mobiles hanging from the ceiling, and definitely a place to check out, particularly if you’re looking for a spot to eat with non-veg friends.
Two raw food places that I get nutritious and delicious power smoothies from when I’m on a lunch break downtown are Gorilla Foods and Organic Lives (SO happy the latter opened a location downtown, which only used to be on Quebec/2nd!). The Superexpialidelicous and Body Builder are my favourites from Organic Lives. If you have to pick one item other than smoothie, get the lemon macaroons from Organic Lives – trust me, you’ll eat that little package of three in no time. These are also great places to kick that chocolate craving while downtown, and still eat healthy. Why would you not!?
I could go on, but I will stop there with my current favourites. Check back for more as I try out other vegan friendly places, or let me know if you’ve found a gem!