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Vegan in Toronto (part two): So many good vegan dinners

Our second Torontan food stop was Apiecalypse Now!, an all vegan pizzeria (if those three words aren't enough to get your juices going, they have a bar upstairs and dessert options that will have you growing a new sweet tooth.)

You can order by the slice or get yourself a whole pizza. Don't judge us, but me and Mr Flicking the Vs got a-not-outrageous four slices between us and still couldn't finish them - let's just say they're not exactly small slices.

These guys have totally nailed vegan pizza topping perfection - those soy curls were something else.

Unfortunately for me - I'm a confirmed Daiya dodger - there's a lot of Daiya involved at Apiecalypse Now. Mr FtVs, who loves his Gary, was very happy indeed, and I was relieved to see the Reunion Tour on the menu, with homemade cashew ricotta instead of Daiya.

Having failed to make my way through more than one whole slice of pizza, I still took a shot at one of Apiecalypse Now's vegan donuts. I got about half way through before having to loosen my belt and admit defeat.

The one sentence summary for Apiecalypse Now: come hungry.

We also stopped in at Bampot, a little tea-house-cum-board-game-cafe. If a board game sounds like your idea of hipster/twee hell, then bear with me, this place is actually cool. Being English, I love tea of all kinds. Tea makes me happy. (I realised not so long ago that most days tea and alcohol are the only fluids I'll drink in a day. I think 10 cups a day is a good amount, what can I say?) So, if a place advertises itself a tea shop, I'm all over that.

Bampot is dinky and dark, with all the board games you might need, as well as some encouragement to remove your shoes, which I didn't, but obeyed anyway.

Reading the tea menu was like reading a list of everything I like to drink, but I wouldn't have minded seeing a cup of builder's tea somewhere. No tea list is complete without one, I reckon. There's also a load of veggie and vegan food on the menu, so we felt duty bound to get some vegan chocolate cheesecake. It was fine, but no match for the tea.

We also managed a game of Scrabble over our brews, which I won. That doesn't happen often.

Next up, we made a return visit to Kupfert and Kim for lunch. There's lot of good options, and I heard this Poke Poke bowl calling my name:

I think every meal should have a bit of watermelon radish on the top - look at that gorgeous colour!

After having a far few too many carb heavy meals during our Toronto stay, I could feel my body crying out for some more vegetables. The poke poke bowl was exactly what I needed - tofu, brown rice, vegetables = heaven. It's the sort of food that tastes good, and makes you get up from the table with a clean plate and a lightness in your step.

Onto Vegetarian Haven, in the city's Chinatown. The weather was so good that day we got to eat outside - not something I do often in London - which I think makes everything taste better. Handily, the food at Vegetarian Haven was pretty good to start with.

For your viewing pleasure: the yuba special.

I ate yuba once on a work trip to Hong Kong and it's always held a special place in my heart (and stomach) ever since. Vegetarian Haven made the very wise decision to stuff it with sweet potato and deep fry it, then add some rice noodles, sauce, and salad. It was carb on carb again, and I loved it. 

What's better than a load of deep fried yuba? A load of vegan ice cream. Like aloadaload. A metric truckload. More than you could shake a vegan stick at. 

I would happily eat almost everything on the menu at Vegetarian Haven (it's all vegan, btw), I would hoover up the dessert menu one by one and have no regrets.

Case in point: chocolate brownie ice cream sundae:

You know when you tell the server you'd like such-and-such a dessert to share and you basically have the intention of eating it all yourself? Well, this is not that. This was more than a match for two greedy vegans. I nearly threw in the towel and stopped eating, but who can resist a bucketful of ice cream, chocolate sauce, and brownie? I didn't even try.

For our last, possibly most Canadian stop, we went to Fresh.

Fresh is a chain of almost vegan restaurants (you can add cheese to a few of their meals, but apart from that, everything else is plant-based).

The menu is one of those romp around the world sort of arrangements: a few dishes with a nod to Asia, others that resemble Mexican, alongside some North American staples.

You know, like a buddha bowl with satay sauce, tomato, cucumber, coriander, spring onions and tofu, all heaped on brown rice or soba noodles.

Or there's a healthied up burrito, with black beans, avocado, vegan cheese sauce, and all the rest. 

All of which is fine and dandy, and gives you that 'yes this tastes nice and probably isn't furring up my arteries either' double win, but then there's the bad stuff. You know, the sort of stuff that makes doctors wince.

It's also the sort of stuff that makes medical students (well this one anyway) very, very happy.

It is poutine! 

I've heard about poutine in reverent tones from Canadians and non-Canadians alike. There seems to be something about chips with cheese and gravy that makes people's eyes light up. I'd been hopeful of trying some vegan poutine and Fresh's really didn't disappoint. 

It was one delicious hot mess:

Just feast your eyes on that great big bowl of gloriousness. It looks a bit like a chip infested swamp, but it was several million tonnes of delicious. It was also meant to be a starter for one person, but it probably could have done about three people. If I would have known the relative merits of my starter and main, I'd have just got me a big bowl of poutine, and got stuck in.

If I ever get a chance to head back to Canada, you can bet I'm going to head to the nearest bowl of poutine and plant my face in it.

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  1. you sound like you need a suitcase to bring home your leftovers - but it all sounds delicious - I like the pizza and poke sort of balance - I would love a chance at the ice cream sundae and the poutine but sharing sounds like a wise idea.

  2. Poutine! Yuba! Epic pizzas! It looks like you had an awesome time eating your way around Toronto.

  3. 10 cups of tea of alcohol? ;) What a great round up of incredible looking eateries - and I love how varied they are.

  4. Poutine poutine - oh i so want to try poutine.

  5. Once again I'm amazed at all the delicious vegan food you've enjoyed on your trip. And in such generous portions too! The yuba dish looks awesome, can't beat fried food unless it's a poutine. :-)

  6. Wow! Who knew such deliciousness abounds in Toronto! It looks like you ate well on your trip!

  7. Wow! That pizza! The donut! Poutine! The sundae! I'm so jealous.


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