The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog

VEGETARIAN RESOURCE GROUP AT GREEN FESTIVAL

Posted on June 06, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Casey Brown

The other weekend I had the opportunity to volunteer with The Vegetarian Resource Group at Green Festival in Washington, DC. Green Festival is a sustainability event that showcases innovative brands and organizations so they can promote their products and services.

It was a unique experience that enabled the other VRG staff/volunteers and me to interact with a wide variety of people and educate them on vegan lifestyles. During the event we met with a man who has been vegetarian since the 1960s and many others who hadn’t yet made the transition, but were interested in learning more.

People expressed their concerns about not knowing what kinds of meals to make, not knowing where to begin, or simply not understanding all of the benefits behind the lifestyle. We were able to share a variety of resources with them including pamphlets, recipe books, and restaurant guides, as well as our own personal experiences to help answer their questions. Over the weekend we handed out over 1,000 copies of our Vegetarian Journal, which includes recipes, cooking tips, and other nutrition information. Our “Vegetarianism in a Nutshell” pamphlet and “My Vegan Plate” really helped people to understand the basics of a vegan diet as well. Everyone was appreciative for these resources, and they were enthusiastic about trying some new vegetarian meals. We also met multiple people who were already vegan and were hoping to get some resources and recipe ideas to share with their friends to help inspire them to consider the lifestyle.

It was an exciting opportunity to encourage everyone to take their next steps, whether they were planning to incorporate more plant-based meals into their lifestyle, trying to eat healthier, or adopting a fully vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. Overall, it was a great experience and I was honored to be able to spend the weekend surrounded by so many motivated and inspiring people that were so passionate about their health and the environment.

To volunteer at The Vegetarian Resource Group booths, please contact Brigette at vrg@vrg.org

To support The Vegetarian Resource Group outreach, please donate at http://www.vrg.org/member/donate_buttons.php

Join at http://www.vrg.org/member/2013sv.php

Casey Brown is doing an internship with The Vegetarian Resource Group this summer.

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Several New Restaurants Have Been Added to The Vegetarian Resource Group’s Online Guide to Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurants in the USA and Canada

Posted on June 03, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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The Vegetarian Resource Group maintains an online Guide to Vegan/Vegetarian Restaurants in the USA and Canada. Below are some recent additions. The entire guide can be found here: http://www.vrg.org/restaurant/index.php

To support the updating of this online restaurant guide, please donate at:
www.vrg.org/donate

‘Ai Pono
75-5813 Ali’i Dr.
Kailua Kona, HI 96740
Located next to Evolution Bakery and Cafe in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii, Ai Pono 100% Vegan Cafe serves vegan versions of a variety of local favorites, from a Teriyaki Plate to a Pulled Jackfruit BBQ Sandwich. Cheeseless cheescake and other desserts are also available. Started by the wife of the chef behind Evolution Bakery, Ai Pono is a partner with Hale Palekana, a “rustic retreat” guest house in the countryside.

Beet Jar
1432 W. 29th St.
Cleveland, OH 44113
Enjoy fresh organic juices, smoothies, salad, and a sandwich in their cozy environment.

Biologic+ Juice Café
12 Cottrell St.
Mystic, CT 06355
Biologic+ is cafe specializes in raw, organic, and cold-pressed juices and made-to-order smoothies, along with nut milks and raw snacks. If you are looking for a refreshing drink, try their savory Cool as a Cucumber Gazpacho (avocado and cucumber gazpacho seasoned with lemon, garlic, and cilantro), B+ Pick Me Up (beet, carrot, kale, celery, cucumber, spinach, mint, and lime) , or their cacao hemp smoothie ( raw cacao, raw hemp seeds, banana, date, cinnamon, and almond milk). There is also a line of juices and smoothies targeted towards younger palates. Biologic+ offers delivery within a ten mile radius with guaranteed overnight shipping.

Bodhi Kosher Thai
9303 W. Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90035
Located in sunny LA, Bodhi Kosher Thai offers an extensive and diverse array of colorful vegan Thai dishes. There are curry dishes, noodle dishes, and rice dishes to choose from, as well as salads, burgers, and wraps. It is easy to order online (on Yelp) and see what dishes others have liked that they have ordered. Bodhi Kosher Thai also offers a $10 lunch special—an entree of your choice served with salad, rice, and tofu, soy beef, or soy chicken.

Doctah Mojo’s Juice Clinic
660 Irwin St.
Atlanta, GA 30312
This friendly juice bar offers a delicious wide variety of organic juices, smoothies, soups, salads, and desserts. All juices and smoothies are made-to-order and gluten free. Try the Salad of the Day, Salad Soup Combo, or Make Your Own. Doctah Mojo’s Juice Clinic is located in the Old Fourth Ward.

Doomie’s Toronto
1263 Queen St. West
Toronto, ON M6K 1L5
Canada
With an eclectic, somewhat industrial, bar atmosphere, Doomie’s offers the rich, greasy, fatty, and gooey side of vegan life. Started up by the restaurant’s chef (Doomie), Doomie’s serves a variety of vegan incarnations of comfort food: burgers, fries, milkshakes, fried mac’n'cheese balls, and so on. There is also an extensive bar, which goes well with the vegan bar food that Doomie’s provides. The restaurant also features a free arcade game, and a “selfie room,” (a place in which one can take selfies) decorated in comic strips by “Vegan Sidekick.”

Easy Living Foods
1559 S Novato Blvd.
Novato, CA 94947
Easy Living Foods Cafe and Juice Bar specializes in vegan foods with gluten-free and raw options. Their menu includes a long list of drinks, snacks, desserts, meals, and instant meals for either dining in or take-out. Try their Energy Sprout Superfood Shake, walnut and beet salad, coconut curry, acai bowl, or a raw cacao mousse pie for dessert.

Le Botaniste
833 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY 10065
This sophisticated cafe features an inventive plant-based and organic menu with dishes like the young coconut ceviche, pasta ‘al mafiosi’ (slow-cooked soylognese with gluten-free fusilli), a mezze platter to share, Apple Cinnamon Volcano, and their quinoa peanut butter cookies. They also have a natural wine list and take care to add only minimal amounts of oil to their dishes.

Mr. Dewie’s
1116 Solano Ave.
Albany, CA 94706
On the corner of Solano and Kains Street, Mr. Dewie’s sells a cashew-based ice cream that is non-dairy, gluten-free, and soy-free. With favorable reviews, Mr. Dewie’s offers a wide range of flavors from the classic vanilla and chocolate to caramel almond crunch and chocolate orange. If you’re not in the area, buy online or look at their website to see if Mr. Dewie’s sells at your local natural grocer.

My Vegan Gold
4319 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90029
My Vegan Gold offers an eclectic menu of delicious mostly non GMO vegan dishes with an Asian twist, such as breakfast dishes, wraps, pasta, burgers, Paninis, and noodles. Try the popular Orange Vegan Chicken or the Green Papaya. The atmosphere is relaxed, light, and modern.

Peña Pachamama
1630 Powell St.
San Francisco, CA 94133
Live music, tapas, plates to share, and raw dishes and desserts are just a part of what Peña Pachamama offers. From their menu of raw and organic as well as traditional Bolivian dishes, try their gluten-free and pan-fried yuca frita with vegan cashew sauce, Bolivian-style porta pancho (organic portabella mushroom, gluten-free tempura breading, potato, rice, and pico de gallo), and raw coconut cream pie or their raw chocolate taco crepe with fresh coconut cream and fruit for dessert.

Shouk
655 K St. NW
Washington, DC 20001
Located a few blocks from the DC Convention Center, you can dine on creative pita sandwiches and salad bowls including the Fennel Pita consisting of roasted crispy potato, red pepper, and pistachio pesto or the Beet Salad, which contains sweet potato, arugula, nuts, cashew labneh, and pomegranate vinaigrette. They also serve soups, sweet potato fries, and more.

The Grain Café
4222 West Pico Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90019
Grain Cafe serves Vegan American/Mexican food. Having its own bakery on premises, many will drop by for just a dessert (e.g. gluten-free Strawberry Cheese Cake) and a drink (e.g. Pineapple Ginger Lemonade). Popular items include the Breakfast Burrito and the Wet Burrito (Black beans, brown rice, guacamole, Daiya cheese, red bell pepper, caramelized onions and lettuce with your choice of chicken, tempeh or burger patty topped with salsa roja or salsa verde and melted Daiya cheese).

Calabash Teahouse & Cafe

Posted on June 02, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

Recently I had the extreme pleasure of dining at Calabash Tea & Tonic in Washington DC. It is difficult to put in to writing how wonderful this establishment truly is, so I deeply encourage everyone to go and try it for yourselves! When I am dining out the ambience of the venue is almost as important to me as the food, and as soon as I walked through the door I felt the warm, calm, and welcoming vibe of Calabash. Every menu item looked outstanding so it took me several minutes to decide what I wanted to eat. I finally settled on the Vegan “B”LT, made with toasted coconut “bacon,” a samosa, and a peanut butter – chocolate chip – oatmeal cookie. The coconut “bacon” on the Vegan “B”LT was an interesting meat substitution that I had not previously tasted, and I was surprised by how delicious it was paired with arugula, tomato, and a creamy sauce. The samosa was large and it had the perfect balance of spices. Being the sugar monster that I am, I of course had to order dessert and the cookie was the ooey-gooiest cookie I have ever had. Plus, I enjoyed that it was the combination of all my favorite cookies.

In addition to the delectable food, Calabash offers a wide variety of specialty teas. I paired my meal with the humorously named “Tea-yonce” which was made with ginger, lemongrass, and cayenne. I also sampled their freshly brewed elderberry kombucha. I was so impressed with the food that I did something I have never done at a dining establishment before – I introduced myself to the owner to personally thank her for creating such a remarkable restaurant. Her name is Sunyatta Amen and she is one of the most inspirational people I have ever met. We got to talking and she told me that she is a 5th generation herbalist, a naturopath, and she comes from Jamaican and Cuban heritage. She believes in using food, plants, and teas as medicine and tools for wellness. When you order a tea or a tonic at Calabash, they don’t ask what you “want,” they ask how you’re feeling so they can help you figure out what your body needs. Sunyatta described Calabash as “the people’s pharmacy” and a “modern apothecary.” I could tell that Sunyatta deeply cares about her customers and their well being. Had I not been in a hurry to see the Smithsonian before closing time, I would have stayed at Calabash for several hours tasting more vegan food, sampling teas, and learning as much about herbs from Sunyatta as possible.

I left Calabash feeling happy, energized, and pleasantly full. I will absolutely be traveling back to Washington DC specifically to spend a day at Calabash as soon as I am able. I cannot recommend Calabash Tea & Tonic highly enough.

Calabash Tea & Tonic is located at 1847 7th St NW in Washington DC. They are open from 9:00am – 8:00pm every day. (202) 525-5386
For more information see: http://calabashdc.com/

By Brigette Dumais

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VEGETARIAN RESOURCE GROUP VEGAN THAI DINNER IN BOSTON AT MY THAI VEGAN CAFE

Posted on June 02, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

Sunday, October 16, 2016, 6 PM

The Vegetarian Resource Group will host a vegan Thai dinner
at My Thai Vegan Café in Boston on Sunday, October 16, 2016 during the
annual meeting of The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Meet VRG
advisors Reed Mangels PhD RD, Catherine Conway MS RD, Debra Wasserman,
and vegetarian dietitians from around the country. All are welcome.

MENU:
Tom Kha, Thai Coconut Soup with tofu
Thai Mango Salad
Nam Prik Kaeng Kari with tofu (Yellow Curry) and brown rice
Pad See Ew. Wide rice noodles with Chinese broccoli and vegan gluten.
Fruit cocktail for dessert or other fruit
Tea and cold water

This will be a plated sit down dinner.

TO RESERVE: Send $30 person (includes tax and tip) (Under eight is half
price) with names of attendees to The Vegetarian Resource Group,
P.O. Box 1463,
Baltimore, MD 21203.
Call (410) 366-8343.

You can also pay at www.vrg.org/donate and write Boston Dinner in the Comments. Refunds after September 30th only if your seat can be replaced.

Hope to see you there!

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Are You Looking for a Veg-Friendly Camp for your Child?

Posted on June 01, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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It’s not easy finding camps that cater to veggie kids. The Vegetarian Resource Group has a list of several camps offering veggie food. Some of the camps are for adults, too!

See: http://www.vrg.org/links/vacation.htm#camps

VISIT THE VEGETARIAN RESOURCE GROUP TABLE AT ALBANY VEGFEST, SATURDAY JUNE 4TH

Posted on May 31, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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VISIT THE VEGETARIAN RESOURCE GROUP TABLE AT ALBANY VEGFEST, SATURDAY JUNE 4TH

The Vegetarian Resource Group will have an outreach booth at the Albany VegFest this Saturday, June 4th. The VegFest is being held in the Polish Community Center, 225 Washington Avenue Extension, Albany, New York 12205 10am to 5pm. If you attend this event, please be sure to stop by The VRG table!

For more details on the Albany VegFest see: http://albanyvegan.webservicesus.com/VegFest.aspx

BOOTH AT SEED SCHOOL HEALTH FAIR IN BALTIMORE

Posted on May 31, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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The Vegetarian Resource Group had a booth at the Seed School health fair in Baltimore, Maryland. Interestingly, two staff members were vegan, and others were interested in making changes in their diets for themselves, so were very happy to receive materials.

Eligibility Criteria

The SEED School of Maryland is a single-grade entry school, meaning it only accepts applications for rising 6th grade students who are Maryland residents. The student must be experiencing academic and environmental challenges that may prevent him/her from succeeding in high school and college. Additionally, the student must demonstrate at least two of the following characteristics:

A record of suspensions, office referrals or chronic truancy.
Failure to achieve proficiency on state assessments.
He/she comes from a single- or no-parent household.
Eligible for free- or reduced-price lunch.
Eligible for public housing or housing assistance.
He/she has an incarcerated family-member.
If you would like to help at VRG booths throughout the USA, please contact Brigette@vrg.org

Plan a Trip to Quebec, Canada and Dine in a Vegan Establishment!

Posted on May 30, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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If you plan on visiting Quebec, Canada soon, here are three vegan restaurants you can try out:

Aux Vivres
4631 St. Laurent Blvd., Montreal, QC H2T 1R2
(514) 842-3479
Vegan/organic. Aux Vivres features local and organic ingredients on their all-vegan menu. Their eclectic range of dishes includes everything from authentic ethnic cuisine to soul food. Enjoy the BLT (made with coconut bacon), Tempeh Burger, or Chili. Art fills the walls of this restaurant while remaining informal enough for children and great for large groups of people. There is also a little shop area near the entrance where you can buy products, order beverages, and pick up food for take-out. Aux Vivres is located in the Plateau area.
Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner. Open Saturday and Sunday for brunch and dinner
Full service
take-out, delivery, catering, fresh juices, smoothies, espresso/cappuccino
VISA/MC, $$

Invitation V
254 Rue Bernard Ouest, Montreal, QC H2V 1T5
(514) 271-8111
Vegan/bistro. Invitation V is a vegan bistro located in the eclectic Mile End neighborhood. Choose from their wide selection of New American style dishes such as Buckwheat Soba noodles or New-Orleans crab less cake. Tea and coffee selections are organic and fair-trade certified. Invitation V is closed between lunch/brunch and dinner, so please call ahead for hours.
Open Tuesday through Friday for lunch and dinner. Open Saturday for brunch and dinner. Open Sunday for brunch. Closed Monday
Full service
take-out
VISA/MC, $-$$

Resonance Café
5175 Avenue du Parc, Montreal, QC H2V 4G3
(514) 894-7543
Vegan. Every day of the week Resonance Café serves late breakfast, lunch and dinner and has live music for you to enjoy! Their menu is 100% vegan and full of goodies including breakfast items, soups, salads, and sandwiches. Try the breakfast sandwich with tofu scramble and cashew cheese or the Victoria Rice Bowl with marinated tofu and kimchi.
Open daily for lunch and dinner through late night service
Limited service
vegan options
smoothies, espresso/cappuccino, beer/wine/alcohol, take-out
VISA/MC/DISC, $$

For a complete list of veggie restaurants in the USA and Canada see:
http://www.vrg.org/restaurant/index.php

To support the upkeep of this extensive guide, please donate to The Vegetarian Resource Group at:
www.vrg.org/donate

Memorial Day Weekend Recipe Ideas

Posted on May 27, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

Lime-Infused Black Bean and Corn Salad

Below are links to some recipe articles that ran in previous issues of Vegetarian Journal and you might want to prepare some of the recipes for Memorial Day Weekend to share with family and friends.

Gourmet Grilling
http://www.vrg.org/journal/2002issue3/2002issue3gourmet.htm

Outdoor Feasts
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2015issue2/2015_issue2_outdoor_feasts.php

Picnic Pleasures
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2002issue2/2002issue2picnic.htm

Deli Salads
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2000jul/2000juldelisalads.htm

Warm Weather Salads Fit to Be Meals
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2015issue3/2015_issue3_salads_meals.php

Cool Salads for Warm Months
http://www.vrg.org/journal/vj2010issue2/2010_issue2_cold_salads.php

To receive Vegetarian Journal, visit:
http://www.vrg.org/member/2013sv.php

Vegan Summer Footwear

Posted on May 26, 2016 by The VRG Blog Editor

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Are you looking for new vegan footwear for the summer?

The Vegetarian Resource Group’s Guide to Leather Alternatives lists numerous vegan stores and online businesses that sell summer footwear including sandals, clogs, and sneakers. Here are a few options:

Sandals from Alternative Outfitters

http://www.alternativeoutfitters.com/collections/womens-sandals

Sandals from Blowfish Malibu
http://www.blowfishshoes.com/ItemServlet?navOp=category1&op=SEL&cat=67&subcat=355

Kid’s and Adult’s Sneakers from Keep
https://keepcompany.com/collections/kids-shoes
https://keepcompany.com/collections/shoes

Clogs and Sandals for Men and Women from Kind Walking
http://www.kindwalking.com/

Sandals, Sneakers, and More for Men and Women from MooShoes
http://www.mooshoes.com

Rope Sandals from Nomadic State of Mind
http://www.nomadicstateofmind.com/

Running Shoes and More from Pangea
http://www.veganstore.com/category/mens-vegan-shoes
http://www.veganstore.com/category/womens-vegan-shoes

Kid’s and Adult’s Shoes and Sandals from Vegan Chic
http://www.veganchic.com/kids/vegan+shoes/search.aspx
http://www.veganchic.com/women/flip+flops/search.aspx
http://www.veganchic.com/men/vegan+sandals/search.aspx

Sneakers, Hiking Boots, Running Shoes, and More from Vegan Essential
https://store.veganessentials.com/footwear-c3.aspx

Men’s and Women’s Shoes and Sandals from TheVegetarianSite
http://www.thevegetariansite.com

To see the entire Guide to Leather Alternatives, visit:
http://www.vrg.org/nutshell/leather.php

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