This September marked the 29th Annual Vegetarian Food Festival in Toronto and can you believe it was the first time I’ve ever gone? I’ve been a vegetarian since 2007 and have always wanted to check it out, but for some reason I just couldn’t get my butt down there in time.
Jason the meat-a-tarian was nice enough to come with me. While the Thai Room Toronto is more his style usually, he is really great at trying out my veggie meals so I was excited for him to try some new veggie/vegan delights!
We picked up our passes from the lovely ladies at Inked Communications and headed out to taste as much as we could.
The first stop was Sunflower Kitchen to taste some vegetarian soups. They also make pesto and hummus, but I didn’t get a chance to taste either. We both tried the Harira and Egyptian Lentil. Surprisingly I liked the Harira the best of the two – expanding my flavour horizons and I also tried the Gazpatcho Summer Soup. It was my first (intentionally) cold soup and I really liked it. I love soup for lunch at work and would consider making this myself in the summertime.
Our next stop was the Peanut Butter & Co booth. Jason and I LOVE peanut butter and we were pretty excited to sample the flavours. We ended up buying 3 jars to take home of our favourites – Cinnamon Raisin Swirl, Mighty Maple & Crunch Time. And someone might have kept his spoon and continued to snack on the jars throughout our day.
After all the peanut butter we needed a drink, so hit up the Tonica Kombucha booth. I had never tried Kombucha before and to be honest, it wasn’t bad but a little too bitter for me. Jason was not a fan but was a good sport and drank it anyway 🙂 We tried the Green Tea Revival and Vibrant Blueberry.
The next booth that spiked our interest was the Dandy Blend Instant Herbal Coffee Substitute. I am not a big coffee drinker at all but Jason is and he was very skeptical of trying it. Surprisingly it was very good and actually tasted like coffee. I would definitely drink this at home and Jason even said that he would like to have some. We didn’t purchase it at the festival but I think I’ll order him some. You can find the drink in Barrie & Ottawa and it seems to be in quite a few locations in the US.
We walked around for about an hour, tasting, listening and learning. We stopped again at the Grass Roots Bakery booth and they have just launched! Website to come. I tried their Chocolate Banana Cherry bar and it was sooo delicious I could have eaten all of them.
The last stop of the day was when I spotted fresh baked each and Strawberry Rhubarb Vegan & Gluten Free tarts. The bakery is a local Toronto place but I’ve misplaced the name. Please let me know if you remember who made these delectable desserts! They were the best things I’d tried all day and I wanted to eat all of them (again).
We headed home after this with full and healthy bellies. It was a really interesting day and I loved trying out the vegetarian and vegan foods. I was in heaven not having to check labels and worry about getting animal by products that I don’t want to ingest. I didn’t feel heavy after eating the sweets and had enough energy to take Finn for a long walk.
I can’t wait until next year’s Vegetarian Food Festival and thank you Inked Communications for the invite!