If you follow me on social media, you know that I just spent some time in Texas attending and speaking at one of the best conferences ever, Vida Vegan Con. VVC is a media and lifestyle conference that combines the strong feelings of community with seminars about business and ethics, while also featuring local vegan businesses/products.
But, another huge part of this adventure was the road trip there and back, plus all of the freakin’ food! In this post I’ll go through a lot of what I ate from California through Arizona and New Mexico, then (BAM!) Austin, Texas. We stocked up on kombuchas, snacks and water at Whole Foods before we started our road trip in CA and then again when leaving Texas, which helped keep us going during those long drives!
After those delicious eats, we drove straight from Phoenix, AZ. to El Paso, TX. only stopping for gas/bathroom breaks. Joni is a total badass road trip driver! It was at night so we didn’t see anything exciting really, and made sure to get up early the next morning to get a head start on our day. We lived off of snacks and sandwiches that Joni made for her, Sayward and I, until we got to Austin.
First meal there and the start of a million tacos:
Next was breakfast and we went to Bouldin Creek Cafe (for visit #1), where I enjoyed some coffee and the vegan El Tipico with Corn Tortillas!
After that, we stopped by Rabbit Food Grocery for some shopping, where I got the Red Jalapeño Yellow Bird Hot Sauce (AMAZING) that’s made in Austin.
We then worked on our presentations (last minute, no?) and hung out until it was dinner time. We wanted to go to BBQ Revolution, but they had already sold out; and I’m glad that was the case! We got to experience Chef Craig Vanis’s food at Bistro Vonish (which is right next door), instead. He was super nice, helpful and is adorable.
Stuffed! And after dinner we got a special show! Chef Craig showed us the rescued piggies who live by the food trailers and are taken care of by another business owner there. They LOVE zucchini and being stroked with plastic forks.
For a late breakfast/early lunch on Thursday we went to Mother’s Cafe & Garden, where I unintentionally ordered some food that reminded me of stuff from Southern CA (home).
Later was the Unofficial (totally official) meet and greet at Buzzmill Coffee, where there’s a bar inside with tasty drinks and a lil’ place called the Golden Spike Rail Cart. There I got a great Mini Philly Cheesesteak (so saucy!) and some awesome “egg rolls”.
Finally, it was Friday, the first day of VVC! They hosted a Vegan Bazaar that was radical and the conference attendees got treated to tables of Miyoko’s cheeses. Mmm..
I was also able to grab a “fish” taco from The Vegan Nom taco cart at the bazaar! Yum!
And for dinner, we went back to Counter Culture which was just okay to me so I’m not posting the pics here. For Saturday and Sunday, we were fed breakfast and lunch at Vida Vegan Con! Taco bars, bowl bars, cookies, and so much good stuff to choose from. None of my plates looked especially enticing, so they were not documented. 😉 I did document the Capital City Bakery Cookies that we had! Sooo good.
Saturday Night we were back at Bouldin Creek Cafe, ordering BBQ Tacos with slaw and fritos on top, while Joni essentially combined fillings from two different sandwiches to make the best one ever.
After that awesome meal, it was time for dessert! So, of course, we headed to Sweet Ritual for some ice cream.
Fast forward to Sunday night, where everyone and their mom is at Cheer Up Charlie’s to eat at Arlo’s (there were also bites by Bistro Vonish there). I got the Bacon Cheeseburger this time, and Damn! That thing is GOOD! Plus, more tater tots, obviously.
Monday, I got my hair did in DT Austin, then took a gorgeous walk over to UNITY Vegan Kitchen for some Chick’n and Waffles.
That held me over for quite some time, then it was eating leftovers and going to Sweet Ritual, yet again. PRO TIP: Get the peanut butter shell and maybe also the cookie dough on top, like I did. Ambrosial!
Sadly, we left Austin on Tuesday and booked it back across the northwestern part of TX, stopping in Albuquerque, NM for food at Thai Vegan. I was sick by this point and their Tom ka kai soup helped me out a lil’ bit.
Joni and I made it to Flagstaff, AZ. that night, promptly passed out, and before we headed to the Grand Canyon in the morning we ate at Macy’s Coffee House. That place is cute and has some good vegan options!
That, friends, concludes the fantastic eats that I had while road-tripping/conference-attending! Next in the series will be Part 2: VVC Talks!