Ask any vegan where in the world they’d love to live and I bet Portland would be high on their list! What other city has a vegan mall for crying out loud?!? Well okay it’s a mini-mall consisting of only of 4 stores, but it’s still called a mall, and they sell nothing but vegan stuff or services. That’s right, services! They have a vegan tattoo place alongside a clothing store, a grocery store and a cafe/bakery. So this past weekend I did a pilgrimage to Portland to worship the vegan Haven that Portland is and stuff my face full of vegan goodies! At this very same mini-mall, after my grocery shopping at Food Fight, and cool vegan t-shirt shopping at Herbivore, I needed a break so I went for a cupcake at Sweet Pea Baking Co. I was thinking of ordering a sort of iced coffee but unfortunately their espresso machine was having a tantrum and refusing to work, so the guy suggested a chai latte. I thought that’s a great idea, and ordered it. Sat at a table, started eating my yummy lemon cupcake, which was AMAZING and drinking my chai latte which was pretty good, and suddenly I freaked out as I had forgotten to order it with soy milk! Went back to the till, and said to the guy (apologetically - you know us Canadians so sorry for everything!) that I had forgotten to ask for soy milk. He said: “Oh, no worries, it comes with soy milk, we don’t carry cow milk!” HOW COOL IS THAT!!!!
When we first drove into town I couldn’t wait to get to Voodoo Doughnut. If you didn’t already know, vegan doughnuts are a rare commodity and so most of us go a bit coocoo for doughnuts…well vegan ones. Even those of us who didn’t care much about doughnuts as non-vegans will go crazy over them now! If you’ve never heard of Voodoo Donoughts, then you probably aren’t aware that even non-vegans go coocoo over them! There’s always a line up, even though the place is open 24/7! Crazy!
Actually the main reason we went to Portland was to see Cirque du Soleil, currently on tour with their show OVO. I can’t say enough good things about the Cirque, one of them being that it’s Canadian! I’ve been a cirque fan since the mid 1990′s, pretty early on in their evolution of becoming a world renown entertainment giant. The beauty of the cirque is that they don’t use any animals in their circus acts! It shows that amazing and awe inspiring circus entertainment can be had without abusing animals!
My husband and I have been going to the cirque every couple of years around our wedding anniversary for the past 8 years. We do it right and get the VIP tickets to get the royal treatment and amazing seats! 5 years ago when I had just recently gone vegan, we had already bought our VIP tickets, and the wining and dining wasn’t that spectacular for me as the only thing I could eat were raw vegetables!! So for the next time I told hubby not to bother anymore. But he didn’t listen and made me contact Cirque du Soleil. He had way more faith in them than I did. Well if I thought they treated us like royalty before, this time they treated me more like a goddess! They fawned over me like I was a precious jewel! I had never been taken care of to such a degree. It was almost embarrassing! They brought me a special table with an arrangement of vegan foods and more if I wanted. It was the most spectacular vegan dinning experience of my life, and I wasn’t even there to dine, I was there to see a show! That was two years ago in Vancouver for Kooza!
This time in Portland, they had vegan wine, Champaign and beer and I hadn’t even thought to ask for vegan alcohol. The chef came out to ask how the food was, gave me the recipe for this delicious onion jam and discussed vegan cooking with me. The coordinator and the head wait staff were again fawning over me like I was a special speciment that needed protection! All in all another memorable night! And I think Ovo is one of my favourites now!
We left Portland with a heavy heart and wanting more…which only means that this love saga will be continued! We love you Portland ❤