Tuesday, June 10, 2008

How I Spent My Summer Vacation, Remembering That I Run A Vegetarian Blog

What do you trust if not your legs, your hands, your lips?

If there were a Vegan Third Reich, it'd be rooted here. Trust that I feasted with little concern and replenished frequently in order to combat the monster hills of SF. Produce was significantly cheaper and more plentiful, in turn knocking up the flavor volume on almost everything. Coffee was revered, vegetarian burritos were a respected work, and natural food markets were omnipresent.

I almost died over my first Mission-style burrito at Taqueria Toyanese. It came wrapped in tinfoil, the way a burrito should, to be eaten with the hands and peeled back after a few bites. How logical. Burriting with a fork just pisses me off. It was a Super Veggie, the super alluring to the sour cream, cheese, and guacamole. Another key component is the addition of rice, which most burritos do not include, making it a meal and a half. Consider also that most burritos here are under $5, and plenty of taquerias offer marinated tofu and soyrizo. The closest I can compare this to in Philadelphia is Los JalapeƱos.

Another highlight was Ike's Place. A long list of vegan subs is partly responsible for the long wait. After a bite of my Veggie Sanchez Elementary (bbq'ed veggie turkey, cheddar, plus all kinds of fixins, on sunflower crunch bread, veganize it if you want), I decided that I want to eat this every day.

There are Chinese Food/Donut Shop hybrids everywhere. What sick shit is this? Is there anything about lo mein that makes you want a glazed donut immediately after? As for the vegan donuts here, they're not amazing.

Papalote is a trendy 'ritto joint that makes a so-so soyrizo. Pass on this overrated spot.

Trouble Coffee is a trip, way over in Ocean Beach, but it's steps away from sand and water. Even more worth it? The thick-cut slices of cinnamon toast, coconuts that you can drink from, and Elbow Grease, the signature coffee. Oh yeah, it's run by a badass surf goddess who claims, "We're all poor."

The Red Cafe is a dingy promised land because there are real Mexicans taking breakfast here. I was the only white girl in the place, which meant that the oatmeal pancakes I read about on the Internet were every bit as magnificent as Yelped.

I know that Millennium has racked up awards and accolades from the veg elite all over the country, but maybe I ordered the wrong dish. My smoked tempeh was as dull as it sounds. I should have went with the tasting menu, but bitched out last second, and then passed up dessert because the descriptions were blahbity blah.

Now forgive me for allowing photos to take you through it. I'm still coming down and trying to cope with life in a city of shitty burritos.

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