mishka’s flight was indeed delayed and she got stuck in san francisco for the night, so i had to go ahead to the vegan bazaar without her. it was an easy walk from my hotel, and colleen and i were pretty excited to partake in the exclusive eat-all-the-miyoko-cheese-you-can-eat hour that was only open to VVC attendees. i had never tried any of miyoko’s cheeses, but i am here to tell you: they live up to the hype. there were several tables of cheese wheels and cracker options, and we were allowed to just circulate and grab at will. i tasted at least 7 varieties (from what i can remember: double cream garlic herb, double cream sun-dried tomato garlic, country style herbs de provence, mt. vesuvius black ash, aged english sharp farmhouse, limited edition strawberry cream something something, and i’m certain i’m forgetting at least one more), and there were a few others i didn’t get to, but every single one i tried was delicious. DELICIOUS I SAY! after we pried ourselves away from the cheese tables, we realized that red rabbit bakery was also set up in the room, and we also learned that we were allowed to roam around in the vendor area before everything opened to the public. so, roam we did.
the vendor area was… bananas. chock full of fantastic vegan businesses and oh, the samples. so many samples. i’m not kidding when i tell you that i ate samples for three hours straight, and then realized that i had doomed myself to Not Being Hungry For Lunch, even though there were four kick-ass food trucks parked outside, just for us. whoops! from what i can remember off the top of my head, i sampled: a capital city bakery brownie *and* a chocolate chip cookie), nada moo vanilla chai ice cream, a taquito, a chili lime carnitas jackfruit taco from upton’s, heidi ho nachos, a tamale, and this was all AFTER the miyoko cheese extravaganza. eep.
(please note: flickr and wordpress appear to be going through some issues in their relationship, and i am having a really hard time linking images with my usual method. bear with me!)
eventually colleen and ricky got hungry enough to eat lunch, so i watched them eat. there were four food trucks parked at the venue for us: the vegan nom, arlo’s, cool beans, and sadie b foods. everything looked delicious, but i just didn’t have it in me, so i waited it out and hoped to get hungry before they all left.
somewhere in here, i decided i’d better go buy a bunch of stuff: i grabbed a new elephant tank and ‘be kind’ wallet from herbivore (always such a pleasure to see michelle!), a snazzy VVC armadillo tee from the official merch table, and a vegan is tee from the adorable and wonderful sweethearts at meaningful paws.
we attended one of the talks at the bazaar: how we made austin awesome, featuring a bunch of certified-awesome peeps who were there to share their wisdom. jessica from rabbit food grocery, kristen from capital city bakery, molly from texas vegfest, and chris from the vegan nom told us all about their austin vegan exploits, led by the always delightful stephanie (lazy smurf).
while this talk was unfolding, mishka finally made it to austin from her unexpected overnight stay in san francisco, and by the time we finished at the panel, she had made it to the bazaar. hooray! she grabbed a taco (as one does) and made her rounds in the vendor area so she could try to catch up on all the samples she’d missed out on, and eventually i finally decided i could be hungry enough to try eating a taco. i headed out to the vegan nom:
…where i was confronted with a menu chock-full of amazing-sounding options, and i really didn’t know what to do with myself. i decided to keep it simple, and ordered a breakfast taco with tofu scramble, potatoes, and avocado.
it was really great, and i wish i had been hungry enough to order tacos from them all day. on our next trip back to austin (see you in february, y’all!), this will be a high priority destination.
after finishing stuffing my face, we wandered around a little more, chatting and mingling, until michelle and i decided we should probably go to the conference hotel and get checked in. we were both too full to worry about going out for dinner, so we just made our way south to the UT campus, checked into our sweet little room, and hunkered down for the night. we both pretended we were going to go to bed early and catch up on our sleep, but instead we stayed up for hours talking about kitties who won’t eat and how stressful that is and how very much we love them. it’s so good to be with friends who get it. <3
end-of-day cumulative austin taco count: 3