Miami!!

Last weekend me and some lovely ladies had a super fun trip to Miami! SO much fun, beach time, dinners and dancing! Love my ladies!!!

The Ladies!!!

Of course I did my homework before going to find out some good vegan options for us 🙂 There were many options, so awesome! We only got to hit up a few, but the ones we did were super great!

The first night we went to The Standard for dinner. Although the service was noticeably super slow, we had a great meal outside right on the water! Fabulous! Too bad The Standard NYC’s menu is not vegan friendly at all 😦

We ordered the Mezze Plate (Hummus, Baba Ghanoush, Chick Peas & Olives) to share and then I had the deelish Soup (carrot and coconut – indian spiced) and the amazing Living “Lasagna” Terrine, yum!!! For me the highlight is typically the dessert and I was very pleased to have the Vegan Ding Dong! (see pics below)

Also on the menu: Sprouted Grains & Organic Greens Salad  Quinoa and Lentil Live Sprouts and Mixed Greens, Avocado, Julienned Vegetables and Carrot-Ginger Vinaigrette,
Vegan Fritto Misto  Chick Pea Panisse, Baby Artichokes, Mushrooms,
Marinated Tofu + Quinoa with Dried Fruit + Raw Coconut Chutney

Soup du Jour (Usually Vegan) (carrot and coconut)

 

Living “Lasagna” Terrine Served Cold; Cashew Nut Cheese, Raw Tomato Sauce, Nut & Veg “Sausage”, Squash “Pasta”

 

Vegan Ding Dong

The next night we had the most amazing meal at Hakkasan!! There was plenty of food for the non-veggie people but for me; we started with the Wild mushroom lettuce wraps and the veggie Dim sum platter. Then we had Tofu claypot in black bean sauce, Stir-fry lotus root and asparagus and lily bulb in black pepper and Stir-fry seasonal Chinese vegetable fried rice. I had never had lily bulbs before and I just Loved them! What an amazing meal!!!! I only got to take a few pictures because we were having the best time so pictures took a back seat 🙂

Stir-fry lotus root and asparagus and lily bulb in black pepper

 

Stir-fry seasonal Chinese vegetable fried rice

 

Vegan in Montreal

For July 4th Weekend Michael and I were in Montreal for our good friend’s wedding! It was such a beautiful and delightful weekend full of love and sunshine! We had an amazing time and I was really impressed by the uber veggie friendliness of the city 🙂 which of course always brings an even bigger smile to my face.

Yeah!

Once we got off the plane and checked into the hotel we set off to meet up with some of the other wedding guests. Beyond wonderfully, they were dining at this little cafe called  Olive + Gourmando in Old Montreal. Complete heaven! There was many a meat dish, but of course once my eyes spotted the Viva Las Vegan sandwich and the Herbivore salad I knew we were somewhere special. Of course I couldn’t make up my mind which to get, but my amazing husband suggested we share them both 🙂 SOO delightful!!  YUM!!

Viva Las Vegan! Such Goodness!

The Herbivore!

Then off to the rehearsal dinner that night at Da Emma, a classic Italian restaurant in Old Montreal. Everything was very meat based yet they did not skip a beat to accommodate me. SO sweet!

On Saturday we went for a 30 or so mile bike ride along the water. (Who knew Montreal was an island??) Gorgeous!! What an absolutely beautiful day and city! Afterwards we stopped for lunch at Cafe Sante Veritas. This to me looked just like a simple lunch place, but really once we met the proprietor and had our food I knew it was so much more! He was so sweet and told me that anything on the menu with a carrot was vegetarian and that he could whip me up anything I wanted to customize as well. I was in heaven with my Wrap de tofu à la tapenade d’olives. (especially after biking for 3 1/2 hours) but this sandwich also came with a side salad. I had ordered a celery and melon juice and my meal came with coffee (and soy milk!) all for $12.39, coming from NYC I was a little in shock!

Michael's Sandwich à la poire et fromage bleu

That evening was the wedding. The couple looked so great, so happy and so in love! Absolute Perfection! At dinner that night they had already told the restaurant that I was vegan so I knew I would be all set. But still the meal I had was one of the best I had ever had at a wedding. I felt really cared for and very loved! Really it was so sweet! I had a deelish salad to start, a spiralized “pasta” with veggies in a scrumptious sauce and a perfect fruit salad for dessert. It was really very thoughtful 🙂

On Sunday we took a nice long walk through the city with some of our friends. I had a whole list of fabulous places to check out of course. We were walking along and I hear Michael telling me that there is a vegan restaurant across the street! Perfection, it was one of the top places on my list, Aux Vivres. AMAZING! I am still thinking about this place and the vegan blt we had! BLT: coconut bacon, lettuce, tomatoes & vegan mayo and we had it in the homemade chapati! YUM! This was so different from the fakin bacon I have had before, and soo good! We also  shared a deelish polenta, beans, guac and salsa dish. Overall just loved this place!

Serious BLT Goodness!!!

That night we made it date night for just the two of us 🙂 We went to another of the top vegan places on my list. Chu Chai (and their sister place called Church) Awesome! The food was delightful! The service slowed a bit as the restaurant began to fill up with lots of diners, but still it was a super great meal!

Amazing Dumplings and Peanut Sauce!

Yummy Pad Kee Mao

SOOOO good!! "Chicken" and Peanut Sauce with Crispy Spinach!

On Monday we spent the day walking around and enjoying the weather. We enjoyed a light snack and deelish teas at Ming Tao Xuan, a vegetarian tea house in Old Montreal and we needed to make one last stop to Cafe Veritas before heading home.

Vegetarian Buns - YUM!!

There are so many other veggie places that we did not get to check out, but we had such a beautiful long weekend and I’m super happy with everything with did do and saw. Now we have some places left for our next romantic trip to Montreal 😉 On the last day when we were walking around we came across Centre Luna Yoga which looked adorable and had Jivamukti Yoga Classes! Next time I will check this place out for sure!

Happy 101 Blog Award!!

I was so happy to find out that I have been chosen for a Happy 101 Blog Award! Yeah!!!! Thanks Heathy! Heathy of Adventures of Raw Goddess Heathy Love her blog!

Here are The Rules:

“List 10 things that make you happy, try to do at least one of them today, and tag 10 bloggers that brighten your day. For those 10 bloggers who get the award, you must link back to my blog!”

10 things that make me happy:
1. The magic in my life!
2. Spending time with my amazing hubby!
3. Having my yoga and spiritual practice in my life, so thankful!
4. Cooking delicious and healthy meals to share with others
5. Travel adventures
6. My fabulous ladies!
7. Playing outside in the fresh air
8. Eating yummy and healthy food
9. Snuggling up on these cold nights with snacks, a movie and of course my husband!
10. Kirtan
There are so many amazing bloggers who inspire me all the time!  I’m nominating:
1. Katie from Chocolate Covered Katie
2. Gena from Choosing Raw
3. Liz from Veggie Girl Vegan
4. Heather from Heather Eats Almond Butter
5. Hannah from Bittersweet
6. Susan from Fat Free Vegan Kitchen
7. Joanne from Foods For Long Life
8. Meghan from Making Love in the Kitchen
9. Punk Rawk Labs
10. There are many more out there that I love and would have liked to nominate, but they have already been nominated. But still I would like to give the shout out 🙂 Kristen, Lauren, Carmella, Joyce, and Diana just to name a few.

Baltimore City Schools Have Meatless Mondays

Love this!! I just read about this on the Livin’ Veg Blog! So fabulous! Go Baltimore!! Check it out 🙂

Baltimore City Schools Have Meatless Mondays

Here is a bit about what Baltimore is doing:

The 80,000 young people BCPS serves will begin each week with a Meatless Monday menu. And that’s not all. The school system has introduced a wide variety of projects to ensure its students eat and learn about healthy, environmentally friendly choices. BCPS has teemed up with local farmers and distributors to provide students fresh, locally raised fruits, vegetables and milk. They’ve also introduced Great Kids Farm, a 33-acre teaching farm, home to chickens, goats and a variety of fruits and vegetables. Educators on the farm teach kids and adults how to produce home-grown fresh food, even in an urban setting. BCPS is also in the process of developing gardens for each of the system’s 200 schools.

The Edible Garden at The New York Botanical Garden

Edible Gardenp pic

June 27–September 13

The Edible Garden exhibit at The New York Botanical Garden is a summer-long celebration of growing great food. We were excited to learn how to grow, prepare, and eat garden-fresh produce.

I wanted to go to this all summer and our schedules finally opened up last weekend to enjoy this beautiful homage to local and home-grown foods. Although an incredibly humid day, we somehow managed to avoid the rain and even had sunshine 🙂 SO lucky! There are many different exhibits and presentations to see. I highly recommend this exhibit if you have a chance to go before it closes on September 13th.

Michael and I hadn’t been up to The Botanical Gardens in 3 years but it was just as gorgeous as we remembered it. Such a special place! The Conservatory is beautiful and educational. You walk through different climates to see so many species of plants, trees and flowers. On this humid day, it did not feel so strange to be in the Rain Forest climate! You also get to explore the desert climate and its array of plant species.

It was such a pleasure to walk through the Home Gardening Center featuring the Good Food Garden, the Seed Savers Heirloom Vegetable Garden and the Martha Stewart’s Culinary Herb Garden. I loved seeing all those gorgeous veggies and planning out our future garden! SO fun!! There were big surprises as to how some vegetables were grown. Check out my pictures below. I had never before seen how okra, eggplant and quinoa were grown. And it was so fun to walk around smelling the fabulous herbs! There were huge bushes of basil and gorgeous hot peppers! Of course we were so happy to see the beautiful kale and chard plants! It made me so excited to one day have our own garden.

This is also a great activity for families as there were several exhibits set up just for kids and exploring gardening. Can you imagine more fun with your little ones than learning how to garden in the Beginner’s Vegetable Garden!?! Fabulous!

pictures aug 09 026

Purple Hot Peppers! How lovely!

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Beautiful Water Lillies

pictures aug 09 024

pictures aug 09 025

Basil, smells so good!!!
Basil, smells so good!!!

Gorgeous Hot Peppers

Gorgeous Hot Peppers

Heirloom Pumpkins

Heirloom Pumpkins

I had no idea that this is how Okra grows! So fabulous!

I had no idea that this is how Okra grows! So fabulous!

Cherry Tomatoes

Cherry Tomatoes

Eggplant! No idea this grew like this either!

Eggplant! No idea this grew like this either!

The Cacao Plant!! Love it!!!!!

The Cacao Plant!! Love it!!!!!

limes

limes

Pineapples :)

Pineapples 🙂

Quinoa! So awesome! This is another one I had no idea about how is grew, love it!

Quinoa! So awesome! This is another one I had no idea about how it grew, love it!

Is this the worlds biggest avocado?

Is this the worlds biggest avocado?

gorgeous tomatoes!

gorgeous tomatoes!

Bush Basil and Parsley

Bush Basil and Parsley

Black Pearl Peppers

Black Pearl Peppers

Beets

Beets

Purple Leaf Basil

Purple Leaf Basil

Ahhh our Beloved Kale!!!! So gorgeous!!

Ahhh our Beloved Kale!!!! So gorgeous!!

Green Cabbage

Green Cabbage

Chard! Love it of course!

Chard! Love it of course!

How pretty are these red cabbage "flowers"!!

How pretty are these red cabbage "flowers"!!

Summer Squash and their gorgeous blossoms

Summer Squash and their gorgeous blossoms

IMG_2201

pictures aug 09 021

pictures aug 09 022

Long Weekend Getaway

My husband and I just had the best super long weekend out on Long Island! Ahh relaxation, good food and even better times! We spent time walking around several of the towns, going to a vineyard and wine tasting, picking berries and peaches from local farms, eating great food and of course some relaxing time swimming and reading.

 

Annie's Organic Cafe & Market

Annie's Organic Cafe & Market

There is a really cute place in Southampton called Annie’s Organic Cafe & Market. It is the kind of cafe that you order at the bar and they bring you your food. I was really happy there; we ended up visiting twice. The menu was pretty limited but we found some really yummy choices. There is food for vegans, vegetarians and meat eaters alike. For lunch, Michael and I both loved the BBQ seitan with caramelized onions served on a organic sourdough roll. It was really filling and quite the treat. They also have a great juice selection, so of course we went for our good old stand-by Green Juice 🙂 There is a little backyard patio that was an enjoyable place to eat our meal. I love eating outside!

The market was small but had some really great products! It was so nice and refreshing to find a place carrying organic produce and products to stock up on.

If you are in the area Annie’s is definitely worth checking out.  

56 Nugent St Southampton, NY 11968 (631) 377-3612 www.anniesorganiccafe.com/

East Hampton Point Restaurant

East Hampton Point Restaurant

One night we had dinner at the East Hampton Point which was mostly about the view. The food was good but we spent most of our time gazing out at the water and the sunset. I would definitely recommend this place for a romantic meal. There is a bar area, a more casual restaurant as well as a more formal side. They are right next to each other, and as far as I could tell only the menus differ. We ate at the “formal” side, although it still had a casual feel that we enjoyed.

295 Three Mile Hbr Hc Rd East Hampton, NY 11937 (631) 329-2800 http://easthamptonpoint.com/
truck

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We went to one of the most enjoyable vineyards ever on our trip, Sherwood House Vineyards. The outdoor tasting room is set in the middle of the gorgeous vineyard. Everything is so relaxed and the wines (especially the whites) were good. I actually loved the whites so much our wonderful server gave me two other ones to try on top of our tasting! So much fun! We were able to hang out for a while drinking wine in the gorgeous vineyard in the sun. Not a bad way to pass an afternoon 🙂 Loved it!! Everyone was super friendly and happy to be there.

I would really recommend taking a trip out there. There are also many other vineyards super close by, so make a day out of it!

2600 Oregon Road   Mattituck, NY 11952  (631) 298-1396 http://sherwoodhousevineyards.com/

farmstand

We were also lucky enough to pick beautiful summer fruit on 2 days of our trip. The first stop was Hank’s Farmstand in Southampton. We picked delicious blackberries and my favorite, raspberries! I was in total heaven munching on them – they were so good!! There is also something so special about being able to pick them yourself and having them so fresh! Deeelish!

324 County Rd 39    Southampton, NY 11968   (631) 726-4667 hankspumpkintown.com

Peaches

The next day we went to Wickhams Fruit Farm. You can pick blueberries, blackberries and peaches. We picked a big bag of luscious, juicy peaches! mmmm!! So fun!

28700 Route 25, Cutchogue, NY 11935 (631) 734-644 http://www.wickhamsfruitfarm.com/

We had so many delicious peaches that I decided to make a yummy Raw Peach Cobbler. Check it out in my post tomorrow 🙂

 
 
 

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