• March 5th, 2010quarrygirla taste of life, farmers market, LA restaurants

    you gotta love the a taste of life booth at the hollywood farmers market. as if the breakfast sandwich (one of the top ten vegan items to eat in los angeles) wasn’t enough to get you out of bed early on sunday…

    vegan chocolate chip cookie. $1

    now you have their homemade chocolate chip cookies to tempt you as well.

    these things are baked freshly, are super fluffy and moist, and will only set you back $1. this is the kind of cookie that you bite into and it starts immediately melting all over…in a good way! it’s cakey and juicy all at once and just oozes with rich creamy chocolate. mmmmm.

    and while you are at the taste of life stand, you would be a FOOL to leave without buying one of their breakfast sandwiches. i know i go on and on about these, but they are WORTH THE HYPE.

    vegan breakfast sandwich. $5

    moist biscuit, melted cheese, succulent sausage, grilled tofu…all smashed together, ALL VEGAN. like an egg mcmuffin but way better and tastier. oh, and as you know a taste of life also makes the best vegan soul food in town…so stock up on some mac and cheese and bbq tofu while you are there as well.

    see you sunday!

    a taste of life
    hollywood farmers market
    cross street of ivar and selma
    every sunday
    8:00am – 1:30pm

    PS: thanks to @havingmysay for telling me about these awesome cookies!!

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  • October 30th, 2009quarrygirla taste of life, farmers market, LA restaurants

    a taste of life vegan breakfast sandwich

    if there’s one reason to drag your ass out of bed before noon on a sunday morning, it’s this breakfast sandwich from a taste of life. that’s right, the makers of the best vegan soul food in los angeles have also created LA’s best vegan mcmuffin—a soft gooey faux sausage and tofu biscuit complete with deliciously creamy cheese. although the restaurant recently closed its storefront, they are still serving food at the hollywood farmers market every sunday from 8:30am to 1:30pm…the only catch is, these hot little muffins tend to sell out. when i arrived last weekend at around 10:30am, there were still several left, but i heard that by 11:30 they were all gone.

    vegan breakfast sandwich: sausage, tofu, and cheese on a fluffy muffin. $5

    vegan breakfast sandwich: sausage, tofu, and cheese on a fluffy muffin. $5

    damn, i can’t even tell you guys how much i loved this thing. i unwrapped my sandwich and ate it right there in the street, and it was honestly one of the best breakfasts i’ve had in my life. the biscuit was incredibly soft and fluffy, the sausage was hearty and meaty, and the tofu was soft in the middle and nicely browned on the outside. oh, and the CHEESE….the cheese was just amazing. it’s the same stuff that a taste of life puts in their vegan macaroni and cheese, which is the best in LA.

    vegan mcmuffin from a taste of life

    there is absolutely nothing lacking or meh about this sandwich. it’s seriously decadent, perfectly greasy, and not “vegan-tasting” in any way. my only advice would be to order a drink as well, because this thing made me seriously thirsty. i know i will be returning to the farmers market and buying these on a regular basis…they are total vegan crack as far as i’m concerned.

    so who is getting up early on sunday morning to eat the best vegan breakfast sandwich in los angeles? trust me, it’s worth it.

    a taste of life
    at the hollywood farmer’s market
    northern side of selma between vine & ivar

    PS: special thanks to brittany from sick of lettuce for telling me about this breakfast sandwich. without her, i wouldn’t know it existed, and my life would suck slightly more.

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  • October 5th, 2009quarrygirla taste of life, LA restaurants


    it with much regret that i bring you the bad news that one of our favorite restaurants in los angeles , a taste of life, has closed down its storefront. the entirely vegan soul food restaurant has been a staple of LA meatless cuisine, serving up the best milk-free mac and cheese in town, southern black eyed peas, sweet bbq tofu, and amazingly flavorful greens. plus loads of other items such as burgers, sandwiches, lasagna and “secret” off-the-menu delights like fried pot roast and gyro meat. the portions were huge, the prices were decent, and the food was amazing. i know that hundreds of vegans agree with me when i say a taste of life will be sorely missed.

    the good news is…you can still get a taste of life’s amazing food in the pre-packaged section at several stores around town, and many of their hot menu items (see the combo pictured above) are available every sunday from their booth at the hollywood farmers market.

    before officially announcing all this on the blog, i did get a few emails, comments, and friends telling me that a taste of life had closed down its storefront. hoping it wasn’t true, i contacted a taste of life, and received this statement from the restaurant:

    Quarrygirl, what’s up? Long time. Well, I got bad news and good news…Bad news first–sadly the rumor is true. We have closed the restaurant. It just got really slow and of course the area it was in didn’t help. Good news–we are still providing our foods in several ways: Retail, catering, meal plans (coming in November), holiday catering (for the holiday season), personal chef services. Vegetarian/ Vegan consumer trends suggest that people are leaning more towards chilled and frozen prepared foods so we decided to move towards the trend. The economy is tricky. So yes, you can still have your beloved mac and cheese…We still cook out of the kitchen. Thanks for reaching out! Oh, we’re doing cooking classes too starting in November. I’m sure you’ll spread the word. Thanks dear!

    they also sent me this handy flyer, with a list of where you can still find a taste of life’s delicious food.


    so there you have it. it’s a sad day in the los angeles vegan world, and we are hoping a taste of life finds a way to re-open. until then, don’t miss your chance to get their soul food combo at the hollywood farmers market, and buy their prepared foods (mac and cheese!!!) at your local store. also, if any of you crazy kids plan on getting married, i hear they are great at catering weddings!

    a taste of life vegan soul food combo. with some of the best mac and cheese i've EVER tasted.

    a taste of life vegan soul food combo. with some of the best mac and cheese i've EVER tasted.

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  • February 12th, 2009quarrygirla taste of life, LA restaurants

    almost any los angeles vegan knows that a taste of life is the best place to get vegan soul food. delicious, quick, rich junk food on the cheap has given the tiny 100% vegan restaurant an incredible reputation amongst herbivores and omnivores alike. it’s a place where we can get shit like macaroni and cheese, black eyed peas, greasy kale…all with that home cooked taste…all without animal products.

    a taste of life has a farmers market stand set up every sunday in hollywood, as well as a newish store front on fountain and vermont. i’ve eaten there several times and can say that the food is all fucking fabulous.

    the last few times i’ve gone, a taste of life has had this menu out on the counter, but after talking to the dude who works there, i found out they offer tons of stuff that wasn’t even printed on the menu. 4 different kinds of burgers, pot roast, breaded pot roast, gyro meat and so much more. since then, a taste of life has revamped its website and added some of the secret items, but they still aren’t all on there. i suggest you call and ask what about their options. there is so much stuff i am dying to try.

    a tasted of life lentil burger $5

    a tasted of life lentil burger $5

    we tried out the lentil burger and it was awesome. it stands right up there with all the best vegan burgers in town, and makes for a great option if you want some greasy tasting junk food.

    we also tried the pot roast, which isn’t on the menu, and it was some of the best wheat meat i’ve ever had.

    a taste of life pot roast. incredible!

    a taste of life pot roast. incredible!

    when i raved about the pot roast to the guy working there, he told me they also do a fried breaded version of it, and he gave me a free sample. this was so ridiculously good, although eating an entire portion of it would probably kill me.

    a taste of life fried pot roast. mmmm.

    a taste of life fried pot roast. mmmm.

    they can also make you a side of gyro meat, which is similar to the pot roast but not quite the same. i suggest you try both and decide what you like best…they are both tasty as can be.

    a taste of life gyro meat

    a taste of life gyro meat

    for those of you who don’t like fake meat, a taste of life has several options to please you. grab a dinner combination with mac n cheese, black-eyed peas, kale and bbq tofu. the mac n cheese is known to be the best vegan mac in los angeles, i mean even whole foods stocks it…it’s that damn good.

    mac n cheese, black-eyed peas, kale and bbq tofu

    mac n cheese, black-eyed peas, kale and bbq tofu

    they’ve also got like a million soups, and even some of those aren’t on the menu! on my last visit i got some chicken noodle and loved it.

    a taste of life chicken noodle soup.

    a taste of life chicken noodle soup.

    there is seriously so much to choose from at a taste of life, and so many secret menu items, i doubt i could ever try all the food they have to offer. plus the dishes are all so decadent and ridiculously delicious…now when i go there i have a really hard time trying new stuff, because the old stuff is all so good! oh, why do you do this to me, a taste of life?! …and i haven’t even tried their shakes or raw items yet!

    if you haven’t been to a taste of life, you sure are missing out.

    a taste of life
    4718 fountain avenue #D (upstairs)
    los angeles ca 90029

    closed monday
    9am-10pm tues-thurs
    9am-2am fri-sun

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  • October 14th, 2008quarrygirla taste of life, farmers market, LA restaurants

    after having a somewhat sketchy experience recently at the taste of life divine vegan foods storefront, i decided to give their farmers market stand in hollywood a try. after all, even though my prior experience was rough around the edges, the food was absolutely incredible. plus, fellow bloggers and local vegans have been known to rave about the soul food served up sunday mornings at selma & vine. boy oh boy, lemme just say what i found was a tray full of delicious.

    soul food dinner combo with kale, black-eyed peas, bbq tofu and lasagna. comes with cornbread. $12

    soul food dinner combo with kale, black-eyed peas, bbq tofu and lasagna. comes with cornbread. $12

    granted, there’s absolutely nowhere to to have a comfortable, seated meal at the hollywood farmers market…so we had to enjoy our vegan soul food atop the nearest electrical transformer. what we herbivores do for a good safe lunch! …am i right?

    sharing with the husband (as usual) we opted on the “dinner combo” which included our choice of 4 dishes and a slice of corn bread for $12. please note that it was only like 10am, so don’t let the name “dinner combo” fool you. it’s basically a taste of life’s way of saying, “instead of 1 awesome dish, get 4 awesome little dishes for the same price.” also, fellow stingy vegans please note that the price charged at the farmers market is less than that which is on the menu of a taste of life’s storefront location. the fountain outlet advertises a dinner combo for $15, not $12.

    all bullshit and price fuckery aside, a taste of life at the hollywood farmers market is beyond wonderful. they’ve got everything ready to go in huge catering-style heated containers and serve that shit up quickly with a smile. the only thing that might hold the line up and keep you from your delicious comfort food is some know-it-all vegan who wants to hob nob with the chef or a tourist who can’t interpret the confusing menu…both violations understandable (i mysef am a smug vegan who is often on vacation).

    let’s get to the food, shall we? starting with a dish i have been looking forward to forever, but was sold out when i visited the taste of life storefront on fountain. THE KALE.
    people have raved about the kale from a taste of life, and every word is true. i can see why late on a sunday night (especially after a day at the grueling farmers market) a taste of life was out of the magic greens a few weeks ago. this shit is definitely something to write home about blog about. i love that the most memorable dish from the ridiculously tasty combo meal was a straight up vegetable. just plain kale rivals all the fake cheese, seitan, tofu and soy dishes in the world. obviously this stuff is in high demand, so be sure to order it. leafy greens have never been so yum.

    next up, the black-eyed peas are a definite must. i feel like the first time i visited a taste of life, i wussed out because i was intimidated by the menu. i got some sandwiches and stuff, not really splurging for the real soul food. hopefully, any one who reads this can have a look at the menu and gather their thoughts before being thrust into a customer service transaction. i will definitely be ordering these again…they were so succulent and juicy. not much oil at all, but a ton of flavor. 

    now, some really huge props go to the lasagna. i ordered it because i wanted to try all new things, and i’d already indulged in the delicious and unmatched mac and cheese prepared by a taste of life. lemme just say, the lasagna was nothing to be scoffed at: sheets of pasta, chopped up vegetables with clumpy and cheesy flavored tomato sauce. my only guff was that in contained bell peppers, WHICH I HATE. to it’s defense, though, this delicious lasagna was edible to me even though i abhor the bell pepper family. somehow i was, miraculously, able to pick around the peppers (which all came in big chunks) and genuinely enjoy my meal. personally, i will always prefer the mac and cheese, but this lasagna was excellent. 

    lastly, even though the kale was awesome, the best thing on my plate ended up being the bbq tofu. this dish was so tasty, i was licking my fork and sopping it up with every last crumb of sinful cornbread. and even as good as it tasted, it probably wasn’t that artery clogging at the end of the day. just perfectly cooked blocks of tofu coated with a tangy and amazing runny sauce. it was all so wonderful…i wish i could tell you more about it, but it was in my stomach before i bothered to create a memory. i just know enough to recommend you don’t pass it up.

    A TASTE OF LIFE DIVINE VEGAN FOODS rocked my world. you gotta check ’em out as soon as you have the opportunity.

    hmmmm….not to sound like the cynical vegan that i am, but let’s weigh the pros and cons in my experience.

    store front: super sketchy at night, out of kale but tons of nice sandwiches and more expensive, possibly some tables to eat at if a someone isn’t passed out and sleeping in the seats.
    farmers market stand: safe and easy, tons of kale but no custom items (like sandwiches), less expensive, and nowhere to eat except on the curb or an electrical transformer.

    either way, the food is awesome. so go get it while you can. i am looking forward to my next visit. 🙂

    you can check out their menu here:

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  • September 24th, 2008quarrygirla taste of life, LA restaurants

    UPDATED. scroll to the bottom of this post for new hours.

    recently i was surfing the forums over at vegan-la, and ran across something that sounded REALLY interesting: vegan soul food right here in hollywood. a taste of life divine vegan foods restaurant is an entirely vegan eatery at fountain and vermont that serves up steamin’ hot soul food and is open late. of course i had to check it out.

    after reading the review in the forum, i had my heart set on ordering the kale, but unfortunately they were all out when we went. so instead, we had to settle on an epic feast consisting of a tofu filet sandwich, a falafel sandwich, and a huge side of mac & cheese. we ordered food to-go, and we had to wait ages for it in a pretty sketchy area, but at the end of the day it was totally worth it. all sinfully delicious.

    vegan mac & cheese side order. $5

    vegan mac & cheese side order. $5

    falafel sandwich. $5

    falafel sandwich. $5

    tofu filet sandwich. $5

    tofu filet sandwich. $5

    the tofu filet sandwich was split in half and polished off immediately. both the husband and i really loved it. deep fried and slathered in the most amazing vegan cheese, there was nothing healthy about this baby. a few fresh vegetables were sprinkled on to add some flavor, but this sandwich was really all about the tasty tofu soul food. with each crunchy bite, the breaded tofu leaked more & more delicious vegan grease. to be honest with you, i kind of ordered this sandwich hastily because i was confused by the menu when i stepped up to the counter. when i was waiting for my food, i started to think of all the things i maybe should have chosen instead. well, while i will definitely try something new next time, i in no way regret giving this a whirl. the filet was fried up in a perfect blend of spices and the creamy slightly melted vegan cheese made every bite so much better. definitely not your average tofu burger.

    the falafel sandwich was equally impressive. i’m a HUGE fan of falafel, so at first i regretted ordering this as well. i thought, why the hell did i order falafel HERE, at a soul food restaurant that can’t possibly compete with my favorite places in the valley?! again, a taste of life proved me wrong. this falafel was up there with the best of them. it didn’t even encroach on the valley’s territory—instead a taste of life totally reinvented the falafel. these balls were huge, twice the size of the falafel i’m used to, and seasoned much more mildly. they were deep fried for longer, it seems like, and had a thicker & juicier skin. inside they were a lot less cooked, but still just as delicious. this sandwich didn’t come on a bun, but in a whole wheat pita pocket, making it slightly harder to share. we managed though and were both blown away by the quality. like the filet sandwich, the falafel pocket came filled with melty-licious cheese that made a beautiful gooey mess. i highly recommend this sandwich, it’s scrumptious and a total steal for just $5. plus, it’s great to experience a new take on the classic falafel.

    slightly crispy pocket, juicy falafel and luscious vegan cheese.

    slightly crispy pocket, juicy falafel and luscious vegan cheese.

    saving the best for last, my favorite dish at a taste of life was of course the vegan mac & cheese. the noodles tasted fried and were coated with big clumps of sharp flavorful fake cheese. i don’t know what they use to make this vegan version, but i can tell ya, the real mac ‘n cheese has got NOTHING on this stuff. it was rich and oily to the very last bite, and the fake cheese had an authentic & delicious slightly sour taste to it. my all time favorite vegan mac & cheese, without a doubt.

    so the food at a taste of life is definitely nothing to be scoffed at. everything was great, and i didn’t even TRY all the stuff that sounded the best on the menu.

    you see, i get menu anxiety, and like to plan my order in advance, but unfortunately when i went to a taste of life, there was no menu available online. i guess they started out as a stand at the hollywood farmers market and haven’t updated their site yet with their new location and menu. so i will go ahead and take care of it for you.

    here you go, scanned from the card i picked up from the coutner. the menu from a taste of life divine vegan foods. oh, and also, here is a snazzy little card with their phone number, hours, and address.


    [googleMap name=”a taste of life divine vegan foods” description=”excellent vegan soul food” width=”570″ height=”320″ directions_from=”true”]4718 fountain avenue los angeles ca 90029[/googleMap]


    now before you get all caught up drooling and rushing over to try this amazing food, i must caution you, the restaurant has its downsides. because i am nice, and i want you all to know how much i loved the food, i will save my bitch session for after the jump. only click on the more button if you wanna hear some good, old fashioned complaining. if you don’t, then go grab some incredible soul food. whatever shit you encounter will be worth it.

    Read the rest of this entry »

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