J and I took advantage of the long Memorial Day weekend to visit one of our neighbors to the north - Toronto. We found this city to be clean, green, and extremely vegan-friendly. We barely scratched the surface of all the vegan dining options during our brief stay, but here is what we were able to fit in:
Sometimes a nice cold cup of fruit really saves the day, especially after hours of road travel.(from Whole Foods - Oakville, ON)
We stayed in the suburb of Mississauga, which, luckily for us, had a friendly organic food market.
Some deli finds at Planet Organic in Mississauga - (clockwise from top left) blueberry flax muffin, sesame tofu sticks, tabouli, and a Mediterranean lentil salad. The deli was a bit pricey, but it boasted a plethora of tasty vegan options for a quick and convenient meal, which made it well worth it.
A selection from the bakery - chocolate carmel pecan turtle.
Haven't had anything like this in a long time - quite special!
When we finally ventured out of the burbs and into the city proper on Sunday, we found ourselves striking out for lunch. Many restaurants open as late as 2pm for lunch on the weekends or are only open for dinner, as was the case with our first choice pick - Vegetarian Haven. Be sure to check this out before you go.
We also tried Hibiscus, but (see statements above) it was not open yet either. Finally, gratefully, we came upon what was to be our lunch destiny - Urban Herbivore.
We ended up not being a bit sorry to forgo our other lunch options - we both ordered sandwiches (sesame tempeh for me, as pictured, and avocado for J, not pictured because it so closely resembled my own) that were a pure delight. Freshly made focaccia bread loaded with veggies and sprouts, plus your main filling of choice, and then grilled to a warm perfection. As the sign boasts, all food is all vegan...and they may want to add "all delicious." Portions are large, as well - half a sandwich easily filled me up for a day of walking.
We briefly considered returning to Vegetarian Haven for dinner, but I had other plans in mind. I was looking forward to some easy on the eyes tapas at Fressen, which happens to be Urban Herbivore's sister restaurant.
For two diners, three or four dishes are recommended. Selections are then brought to the table one at a time to be shared. Clockwise from top left - warm bread with garlic spread, view of Fressen's backside with the CN Tower, mixed green salad with marinated mushrooms and carrot flowers, homemade gnocchi with pesto and asparagus, spinach blinis with avocado corn salsa and pepper puree, and an interior shot (this was taken when we arrived at 6pm, but the place was completely full by 6:45, so I'm glad we arrived early).
We were pretty satisfied after our three courses, but I couldn't pass up dessert. Fressen offers one option for your sweet fix - Belgian chocolate fudge triangles infused with Jack Daniels and filled with a small circle of nuts served alongside a pile of fresh fruit and a scoop of orange chocolate mousse. This hereby proves that chocolate pyramids are the very best kind of pyramid, without a doubt.
So that concludes our Toronto eating experience. We're looking forward to going back and tackling some of the eateries we missed out on, and there really are so many - it's amazing!