Wednesday, 23 November 2016

A Vegan's Guide to New York - Desserts

Guys, prepare yourself for a serious sugar overdose. Donuts, ice-cream, cookies, cupcakes, cheesecake, the lot. I promise this is a good one...

Van Leeuwan Artisan Ice Cream (some vegan)

1st order - salted caramel and cookie dough vegan scoops, with chocolate sauce (not pictured, I was too excited)
2nd order - vegan mint chip ice cream cookie sandwich

The vegan scoops here are hands down the best tasting ice-creams I've ever had. The velvety richness of the salted caramel, the refreshing sweetness of the mint choc chip, the chewy and chocolate packed cookies; everything was a 10/10. If you're wanting the best vegan ice cream in the city, look no further.

Dun-Well Donuts (100% vegan)

Order - The Homer (traditional donut base with strawberry frosting and sprinkles)

This was my first donut since becoming vegan, and while I have no comparison yet, this was one seriously good donut. The range of flavours for these chewy delights was also impressive, with anything from toasted coconut, PB&J, chocolate peanut and maple being available. Reasonably priced too!

Sweets ByCHLOË (100% vegan, some GF)

Order - PB&J cupcake and Chocolate cupcake (yes I ate both, I regret nothing)

Im saying it again, hands down the best vegan cupcakes I've ever tasted! Fluffy moist sponges, just enough creamy icing, and surprise surprise, not a sickly as you might think. I also tried a bit of my dad's pecan pie from ByCHLOË and it was insanely good. They also offer full size birthday cakes(!) ice creams, cookies, slices and pastries. Without a doubt there's something for everyone. 

Champs Diner (100% vegan, some GF)

Order - Chocolate peanut butter cheesecake

This was definitely the heaviest dessert I tried on the trip; a dense and creamy cheesecake middle topped with rich chocolate and peanut butter ganache and a layer of chocolate biscuit base. This slice was a struggle even for me to finish, so would be a great one to share as a seriously indulgent pud. Mum said the red velvet cupcake pictured was also a winner if cheesecake doesn't float your boat.

Have you tried any of these places? Any other recommendations welcomed!

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

A Vegan's Guide to New York // Lunch & Dinner

Another vegan foodie instalment, this time covering all the savoury spots I visited during the trip. As you can tell at the odd place I was so hungry I forgot to snap a photo of the shop front.. really need to improve my organisation and photography.

Champs Diner (100% Vegan)

Order - Baja Fish Burrito

I could not fault the food here, there was plenty of it and the 'fish' pieces used were identical to what I remember of actual fish. The salad was a nice fresh accompaniment too - loved the crunchy radish topping. Quick side-note though; our waitress never cracked a single smile and her colleague proceeded to tell us the tip left wasn't big enough, which soured the meal. Differences aside, you will find good and plentiful food here, and the breakfast menu sounds amazing too.

Sweetgreens (some Vegan, some GF)

Order - Shredded Romaine, cherry tomatoes, cucumber, wild rice, sweet potato pieces, warm chickpeas and a spicy cashew dressing

This was the tastiest salad I've ever eaten; flavoursome, crunchy and filling with just the right amount of dressing. I customised my own bowl which gave me loads of vegan options, and I finished every last scrap. If you're wanting a lighter lunch in the city or are a big salad fan, you have to try Sweetgreens!

Pala Pizza (some Vegan, some GF)

Order - Porri e Salsiccia (veggie sausage, hot peppercorns, leeks, sundried tomatoes and daiya cheese)

This Italian joint did a great job of offering and understanding our dietary preferences, and the pizza and main options for standard, vegan and gluten free diets were quite vast. However, the pricing was quite steep for an ok vegan pizza so bear that in mind. For cheaper slices, try Screamers Pizzeria because I've heard good things!

Souen (some Vegan, some GF)

Order - Curry miso Ramen with tofu, squash and homemade buckwheat noodles

This little organic eatery was a great spot for vegan Ramen - the bowl was huge and filling, the food was seriously flavourful and the service friendly. If you're in the mood for high quality vegan ramen (they also offer salads, soup, sushi, pad Thai etc) check out Souen in either Soho or the East Village.

Bonus Eateries 

Chipotle - go without cheese, sour cream and swap the meat for fajita veg and you can have yourself a vegan burrito, bowl, taco or salad with (most of) the trimmings. Don't skip the guac.

John's of 12th Street - this traditional Italian offers a whole host of pizzas, pasta dishes, mains and desserts with vegan twists tasting just as good if not better than the real thing! I'd definitely recommend the vegan Alfredo for a creamy carb overdose (aka the best thing) and the vegan spaghetti and meatballs which I had a sneaky taste of. 

Wholefoods - Not even kidding, roaming the isles of Wholefoods and shoving everything labelled 'vegan' into my basket was on of the best experiences of my life; cookies, sushi, cakes, fresh fruit, bagels, I had zero self control... we just don't have this luxury in the UK! I warn you if you've never been before you might get carried away and end up spending $70 like we did. Multiple times.

Hope you get some ideas from this! Final foodie instalment will be for the sweet toothed amongst you...

Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Central Park Pink

Another outfit peek today from an incredibly hot afternoon in Central Park. From my last outfit post, you'll know I've been hooked on anything pale pink recently, and the top layers of this look are all about that...

The blue denim, blush pink and red combo was my favourite throughout the holiday. Throw on white  trainers with any of these colours and you've yourself got an easy classic look; I'm sure you can tell I can't get enough of it! I also used to be a huge skinny scarf fan back in my pre-teen years so I'm not complaining about the whole bandana revamp recently...

T-shirt - Gap
Jumper - AllSaints
Denim Skirt - Topshop
Red Necktie - Vintage (similar)
Sunglasses - LeSpecs
Bag - Matt&Nat
Plimsolls - Superga
Watch - Olivia Burton 

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

A Vegan's Guide to New York // Breakfast

Arguably my favourite meal of the day, breakfast/brunch in New York is a total dream for vegan options. I'm going to list the places I visited, tell you what I ordered/would recommend, then quickly round up the dining experience in case you choose to visit any of these places. Enjoy!

  • The Butcher's Daughter (Vegetarian, some Vegan, some GF)

Order - Berry Pancakes and a Brazilian Blast Smoothie

The portion was perfect for me, although for the price an extra pancake wouldn't have hurt;) However, a delicious smoothie, friendly service and charming surroundings made this a really nice brunch spot. Do bare in mind that the menu varies from location to location, so don't get excited by something online as they may not serve it in the location you visit.

  • Browns (some Vegan, some GF options) 
Order - Blueberry Bagel

If you're wanting a typical crispy outside-chewy middle New York bagel, then you have to try Browns. The bagels were huge, the service quick, and the seating area packed which can only be a good sign. And for the non-vegans, I can assure you that the cream cheese bagels I spotted were absolutely rammed, no skimping 'round here.

  • Blossom Du Jour (100% Vegan)

1st Order - Tofu Scramble Breakfast Wrap, 2nd Order - Buffalo Cauliflower Bites & Butterfinger Shake (not pictured, I was too hungry)

I can't fault this little plant-based joint; the food they offer is generously portioned, quick, and ridiculously tasty. Standout for me has to be the Butterfinger milkshake, it had all the indulgence of ice-cream without feeling too much like a desert, and wasn't sickly. Similar pricing to the Butcher's Daughter, though I feel you're getting a bit more bang for your buck here; you can see how stuffed the wrap was!

  • Erin McKenna's Bakery (100% GF & Vegan)

Order - Red Velvet Cupcake

This East Village gem has vegans and coeliacs covered, offering a wide range of scrumptious baked goods from muffins and loaves ideal for breakfast, to brownies and cupcakes perfect for something sweet. This cupcake's red velvet sponge was tasty and fresh, and the cream cheese style frosting was rich and buttery smooth. Big thumbs up! I just wish one would open in London..

Hope this didn't make you too hungry! Look out for a lunch/dinner edition and a sweet edition soon :)