White Dog Cafe in Philly

University City in West Philadelphia is teeming with students, faculty, staff, and community members seeking sustenance for lunch each day. Granted, many bring their lunch. I decided to try the White Dog Cafe yesterday and the best thing going for it are all the fun dog paintings.

They have a vegetarian menu to ask for and many options can be made vegan.

We ordered the sweet potatoes, fries, arepas, and Udon noodle salad. I enjoyed the sweet potatoes, but the arepas came with cheese, despite saying vegan three times when ordering, and the entrees were VERY salty.

Don’t let the pretty presentation fool you. On top of this our reception was lackluster and server clearly wanted to be elsewhere. We did get plenty of water. I guess they know their food is very salty?

One vegan cupcake out of five. Food and service not good, especially at these prices.


Philly Vegan Restaurant Week

Last week I was lucky enough to pig out at six different restaurants offering special menu items for Philly Vegan Restaurant Week. I remember when we lived in Dallas there was one restaurant during restaurant week that offered a vegan meal and we jumped on it. I remember enjoying it, but it was nothing like the smorgasbord I enjoyed last week.

The first night I participated was Monday and it was the kickoff event at Tattooed Mom’s. Luckily we arrived at 6:00 to eat before a vegan bake sale because they ran out of the special sandwich! A picnic fried chick’n sammy.

At the bake sale we scored air-fried Oreos and a piece of cake. Yummers!

Tuesday evening we arrived at Miss Rachel’s Pantry at 4:50, it opens at 5:00, and we were one of the last people that got her BBQ plate! She made 110 and we ate about 5:45.

Wednesday we had dinner with one of the organizers at Soy Cafe. It was amazeballs with bruschetta over dried sweet potato, stuffed shells, and tiramisu. I’m drooling while remembering!

Thursday we made it to Front Street Cafe and were overwhelmed by the options. Many were from their regular menu, but we had never been, so all was new to us. I can’t remember everything, but we started with heirloom tomato focaccia, shared a giant kale Cesar salad and Mac n Cheese, then I had spaghetti squash with black bean balls and hubby had a noodle dish. The meal ended with mango flan and carrot cake.

Friday was one of the best meals experienced and was at Pumpkin. This restaurant does not normally have a vegan option, but they saw the event advertising and wanted to be part of the week. Wow am I glad they were. So Yummers!

The last night we made our way to Avenue Cup Cafe for baked ziti. Again, no disappointments.

What an incredible week. This was the first time Philly had a vegan restaurant week and I’m already excited for next year. Even the mission is beautiful.

In addition to a couple pop-up dinners, 31 restaurants participated and most are not fully vegan places. If coming to Philly for a visit, this is the week to make it happen.

Philly Vegan Pop Flea and Announcement

A Power of Color Market happened in Philadelphia yesterday. It was great fun!

There were so many fun things to try and talk about.

This was my first Pop Flea and I was not disappointed. They happen about once a month is different locations through Philadelphia and the suburbs. I came home with all these fun things:

There were fewer food vendors compared to the Vegan Shop-ups in NYC, but I got nachos, mac n cheese, and a cookie from Soy Cafe and brought home some of the nacho nut cheese.

Now for the announcement… hubby and I have moved to Philly! More fun stuff from Philly forthcoming. Woo hoo!

Here are closeups of the fun things I picked up at the Pop Flea from Fili Kale, Soap by Alana, Empress Wholistics, and Live Decent.

OCF Coffee House in Philly

We spent four hours on a bicycle tour of Philly. It was really wonderful. We rode all over the grid of the city learning about the history and the changes. Two of my favorite things combined!

The tour happened from 10:30 to 2:30 without a snack, so we were starving at the end. I couldn’t wait too long before eating, so we stared looking at the restaurants close to the bicycle shop.

The second place we looked at the menu had several vegan labeled options! So we decided to try it out.

The weather was a bit chilly and I really wanted something hot to drink. Vegan hot chocolate? Score!

And my first froth art. Another score! It was delicious.

We ordered the vegan omelet and vegan pancakes. Of course we shared.

Yummers! We really enjoyed everything. And the atmosphere is simple. Clearly people like this place!

Everyone orders at the counter that has assorted pastries, even vegan ones, to choose from.

I would definitely return to OCF Coffee House. It gets four out of five vegan cupcakes. Looking for easy brunch food near the penitentiary? Try OCF. Yummers!

Bar Bombon in Philly

We didn’t want to worry about dinner reservations, so we took our chances to find a fun place to eat. On our last trip to Philly we stoped at Bar Bombon for a snack. I remember we got nachos and plantains. It was yummers, but I never got a chance to blog about it. So when there were two seats available at the bar, we eagerly sat down for dinner.

The bartender was super nice and made hubby a custom drink after a short conversation about what he likes. Hubby always loves when bartenders are willing to make something a surprise. Then, after a brief conversation with me, that included how I don’t drink alcohol, he made me this delicious carrot and ginger juice that I adored. We paired these with guacamole. Yummers! He also made sure we understood everything was vegan, even though words like “cheese” are on the menu. Right up our alley!

Next we ordered enchiladas and a Cubano. The restaurant claims to be Puerto Rican, but it felt more fusion. Both dishes were yummers.

We really enjoyed our dinner. Bar Bombon gets four out of five vegan cupcakes. We enjoyed, but the food isn’t necessarily inventive. We will absolutely return and I recommend trying this place if you get a chance.

Govinda’s in Philly

It’s been a year, so time to get back to Philly! We always enjoy this city and it’s so easy to get here from NYC.

On our last visit we came across Govinda’s, but we were already full and didn’t have room in our bellies to try more things. This trip I made a beeline!

The menu has several things that looked promising. “Comfort food” is the self-proclaimed fare.

They offer cheese made from cow milk, and thus considered vegetarian, but also offer vegan cheese.

We ordered several things to try. Hubby got the fish sandwich, Cesar salad, and a donut. I picked out a chicken quesadilla, vegetable soup, and a samosa.

The fish sandwich reminded me of the fish sticks I knew as a kid. But the food overall was just okay. It was was what vegan food was five years ago, fun because no one else was offering it. Today, the options are fresher and flavors more complex. I was disappointed.

The woman at the counter was kind. Even when there was suddenly a big rush of customers. The decor is dated, but the place felt clean.

Govinda’s gets three out of five vegan cupcakes. It’s okay, but there are better options within walking distance. I will likely not return to this restaurant.

Update: I am changing the rating to one vegan cupcake. I was sick the next day and no one needs to experience that if I can provide helpful feedback. Not yummers.

Blackbird Pizzeria in Philly

This unassuming restaurant front contains some of the best vegan pizza I have had the pleasure of tasting.

On my second trip to Philadelphia I finally made it to this pizzeria. I had been hearing about its yummies for some time, so I was thrilled to try it.

There is a menu, but the slices readily available were the best part. My slice focused on mushrooms and hubby had lots of arugula to enjoy.

Again, yummers. Hubby also got the Philly Stake Sandwich, since, you know, we were in Philly. He’s also originally from Pennsylvania, so he’s often keen on things familiar.

He loved it. I was less enthusiastic, but I’m happy to share his scarfing.

I also got a Cesar salad.

Meh is a great description. Stick with the pizza at this place. My salad took the longest of our order to be ready. It must not be frequently ordered.

They also have dessert, but we skipped trying anything.

Blackbird gets three out of five vegan cupcakes. Great pizza and always get that. The staff was super nice and the place clean. I will absolutely return on my next visit.

HipCityVeg in Philly

Hubby wanted to return to Philadelphia for his birthday. Why not? We had a great visit last summer and I was happy to make reservations at all the places we fell in love with last time.

As we were walking from the train station to our hotel we stumbled upon HipCityVeg. A place we didn’t even know existed. Apparently, it’s owned by the same group that opened Charlie Was A Sinner.

Holy yummers, vegans! I got a Spinach BLT Salad and hubby picked out the Crispy HipCity Ranch sandwich. I also got us a side of sweet potato fries.

The place was packed, so we got lunch to go and ate at our hotel. Hubby was so excited that he was half way through his sandwich before I got a photo!

Great fast vegan food. Four out of five vegan cupcakes. Totally worth enjoying.

Sweet Freedom Bakery in Philly

Our last day in Philly we decided to walk down to Sweet Freedom Bakery. Especially since the weather was holding calm for us. This spot boasts of being vegan and gluten free, among other things, while being full of yummy.

We were overwhelmed with all the delicious looking options!

Since we couldn’t decide, we picked out a box of different treats to take back to the hotel and home with us. There are a couple tables, but the shop is fairly sparse.

Everything was so delicious that nothing made it back to NYC. We tried a donut, cupcakes, and a cake ball. If you make it to Philly, this place is very worth a visit. Sweet Freedom gets four out of five vegan cupcakes. Yummers!

P. S. & Co in Philly

P. S. & Co was my favorite brunch spot in Philly. All vegan and gluten free, this gem has good food and an outdoor garden to sit in. The staff was super nice and the food case endlessly tempting!

For my first trip I ordered pancakes. Mmm… Then I still had some room and got a piece of cake. Because, cake. My second visit I got breakfast tacos and learned why they are a local favorite. I would absolutely order those tacos again.

The space is rustic and clean.

I absolutely recommend trying out P. S. & Co when in Philly. It gets four out of five vegan cupcakes. Four is because although the food and experience are good, it’s not quite as playful as other places. But, again, totally worth checking out and enjoying.