So many options to choose from, so little time!
London, Ontario is fortunate to have several local eateries that are plant-based, and I’ve tried most of them.
However, this was my first time at VegFest.
VegFest is an annual event that promotes the benefits of all things plant-based. In addition to several food vendors, animal advocacy groups and plant-based businesses like Purdy Natural were at the event.
While I am not vegan, I enjoy the cuisine and the many options to choose from.
The only problem is actually choosing. With more than 100 vendors at the event, there are so many possibilities.
I decided to mix it up by trying a mix of vendors I was familiar and unfamiliar with.
Here’s what I ended up having… Wipe the drool off of your chin while reading this.
Boho Bake Shop – Chocolate Coconut Donut
Normally, I would have dessert last, but these donuts were calling my name.
The Boho Bakeshop has been part of London’s vegan scene since 2015, but up until now, I didn’t have a chance to try it. I enjoy the vegan donuts from the Ground Up Organic Cafe and Plant Matter Kitchen, so I always wanted to try Boho Bake Shop’s donuts.
The chocolate coconut donut was fresh and full of flavour. If you love these flavours together, you need to try this. The donuts are also gluten-free and do not have refined sugar.
Main Vegan Deli – Mozzarella sample and Queso
I was intrigued by this vendor when I saw that they were a vegan deli. I didn’t know there was one in Southwestern Ontario.
Trying out samples is an essential part of any food festival – especially when they are cheese samples. Thankfully, Glencoe, Ontario’s Main Vegan Deli had an array of locally sourced organic nut-based cheese and meats to try out.
There were a few people crowding near the booth, so I knew it must be good.
The mozzarella was soft and creamy, and I would spread this on flatbread. The queso had a bit of kick to it and is perfect for dipping.
Boon Burger is a vegan burger cafe that first opened in 2010 in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Its recently opened Guelph location had its staff at VegFest.
After having dessert and an appetizer first, it was time for the main course. Veggie burgers are one of my favourite foods, so I had to try this place to see what their burgers are like.
I tried the Flaming Fiesta because the patty was a black bean base, and I was eager to try something spicy.
The burger was the fully-loaded, fall-apart, you-better-eat-this-with-two-hands sandwich it should be with just a hint of spice. I wouldn’t have thought of putting a corn chip on a burger, but it added a satisfying crunch.
Pierogi Me! – Cheddar and Potato Pierogi
My other favourite food is pierogi, so I had to try Pierogi Me! from Hamilton, Ontario. Pierogi Me! has been running for 13 years, and expanded their menu in 2014.
As a pierogi connoisseur, I went with the classic cheese and potato pierogi with sour cream and onion, to see how they taste in comparison to the non-vegan version. These did not disappoint!
The pierogi was soft, doughy, and cheesy Polish comfort food. Honestly, I would have never guessed these are vegan if I didn’t know better.
Chi-Hi- Fresh Rolls
Normally, I get their Banh-Mi tofu subs, but after eating a burger and pierogi, I decided I should have something a little bit lighter and go for the fresh rolls.
Their rolls were refreshing and light, with a few surprises such as tofu and sweet soy sauce.
I usually have peanut sauce instead of sweet soy sauce with fresh rolls, but I think I like this pairing better.
Perfect Chef- Organic Mustard and Moroccan Ketchup with Pretzels
At this point, I was feeling stuffed, but I knew I had to try a few more samples. I always have to try sauces if there’s a booth for them at any event.
Perfect Chef is an organic, gluten-free, and vegan sauce company from Waterloo, Ontario. I chose the Moroccan ketchup and the organic mustard, simply because I was curious to see what they would taste like. It was my first time having either product, as it was with many items at VegFest.
Both sauces that I tried from Perfect Chef were savory. The ketchup reminded me of sriracha, so I’d have that again for sure because I already put sriracha on a lot of food.
Soup Girl-Moroccan Lentil Soup
Toronto, Ontario’s Soup Girl sells dry soup mixes that are all plant-based.
I tried Soup Girl’s soup while I was in Toronto a few years ago, so I had to try a full-flavoured soup sample.
The Moroccan Lentil soup sample was the savoury, hearty soup necessary for a cold November day.
Speaking of cold November days, what’s a better way to end VegFest than having a staple winter drink?
I knew I had to try Peas + Thank You because the name is so punny. By the time I got to their booth, however, I only had room for a drink.
Their apple cider was fresh and juicy – like biting into a crisp apple.
Don’t worry – you can try plant-based food options any time of year!
If you are planning a vegan night out, you can still see what London has to offer by checking out VegFest’s 2017 Vendor List on their website.