finding vegan food can be hard sometimes, but imagine being a vegan musician on tour. shuffling around from city to city, being away from home, and dealing with the pressures of performing—all while trying to find 3 animal-free meals per day in uncharted territory. sounds challenging, eh? well that’s what alex estrada is up to right now, as his band silver snakes embarks on a 10 day tour from california to nevada, to washington and oregon and back again. for educational purposes, alex has agreed to document his vegan tour experience via text to me, and i’m gonna post it all here on the blog. the tour culminates here in LA with a CD release party on october 23rd, so i expect to see you all there after reading what’s gone into the silver snakes’ stomachs for ten days straight. if you aren’t familiar with silver snakes yet, check out their site, listen to them on spotify, and read up on them at peta2.
their tour kicked off today in sacramento, and the band stopped off at a chipotle in lebec, CA for lunch, followed by some sugar plum vegan in sacramento for dinner. here are the photos, along with alex’s direct words via SMS.
California classic. Lebec, CA – chipotle veggie bowl. Extra beans, all the salsas, corn tortilla on the side. I have no idea where we are… I think we are by bakersfield.
I found a place in Sacramento I want to try. I hope we make it in time! Dude I heard this place has a jackfruit/walnut tuna melt and animal style fries.. pray4me …Tags: chain dining, chipotle, sacramento, silver snakes, vegan on tour
UPDATE: just found out the dressings listed in the sweet leaf section of this post contain HONEY. if you order food from sweet leaf, get it with no sauce/dressing!
we vegans have it pretty rough sometimes. it feels like more often than not we find ourselves in places or social situations at meal times where there is almost nothing we can eat, and even then we live in fear that our salad, fries, or bread roll may be contaminated with traces of dairy. lemme assure you, coachella is not one of those places.
coachella is fucking annoying for loads of other reasons, don’t get me wrong. it’s hot as hell, it’s pretentious, it’s expensive and it’s inconvenient….but all those things aside, coachella is definitely VEGAN-FRIENDLY. this year i hear they are even going to be carrying VEGAN CUPCAKES in the vip section made by luscious organic desserts. so be sure to score a wristband if you haven’t already…you need to grab a vegan cupcake before morrissey and paul mccartney eat them all.
i went to coachella last year and took myself on a vegan tour of the festival…here is some of the stuff you can look forward to if you are headed to the desert next week.
sweet leaf organics is a solar powered kitchen that shows up at music festivals and serves organic vegan food. kick ass. they were at coachella last year near the main stage, and if their website schedule is accurate, they will make an appearance this year as well. i didn’t spot this place until sunday last year, and i was pretty disappointed…my husband and i only got to enjoy one meal at sweet leaf, and it was easily the best food at the festival.
the menu at sweet leaf is simple, but very appetizing. they have grilled tofu or tempeh wraps and burgers, as well as salads, stir-fry dishes and fresh smoothies. we ordered the marinated tofu wrap and tempeh burger, and were very happy with both.
they also had vegan items in the vip section, although nothing as awesome as sweet leaf. we found a sushi stand that had vegan vegetable rolls and inari. while it was a total ripoff at 12 bucks, at least it tasted good and didn’t contain animals.
if you are more of a dance tent kinda person, don’t worry. there will be vegan food for you too. last year there was an entirely vegan place called bombay station near the gobi serving up a ridiculously good curry combination. anywhere serves 100% vegan food is a winner in my book, so i definitely hope this place returns. oh, and if you like to waste money, there is also a place that sells artichokes for $7.
if you want more indian-style food and get sick of the bombay station, there was also another place close by selling a tasty tofu naanwich. i don’t remember the name of this stand, but it had the words “vegan-friendly” posted on signs all over it. for a map to this place click here, for full review click here.
so i think it’s pretty safe to say that vegans won’t go hungry at coachella. you will probably go broke…but definitely not hungry. last year i was there with my husband for 3 days, and between the two of us we didn’t even get to try all the vegan food.
i will keep you posted on this year’s offerings as well. if you are going to attend the festival, follow me on twitter. i will tweet every time i run across vegan food. that is if i can tear myself away from the VEGAN CUPCAKES.Tags: coachella, music, palm springs
May 22nd, 2008bands
(and a belated happy bday to mr. meaner, whose birthday was yesterday!)
morrissey turns 49 today. best wishes to such a kick ass vegetarian.
the final day of coachella 2008, sunday april 27, featured the best vegan festival food to date. yet it was a bitter-sweet victory over the past couple days, because the selection of food (and alcohol) was just TOO GOOD.
so good, in fact, that your humble narrator spent most of the day relaxing in the shade, munching on snacks, smoking cigarettes and sipping cocktails…rather standing in the heat, fighting off hipsters, coughing up secondhand weed and waiting for the “next big thing(s)” to take the stage.
vegetarian sushi with a side of inari: $12.
marinated tofu wrap with vegetables and peanut sauce: $9.
marinated tempeh burger with vegetable and tahini: $9.
that’s right, my friends…i was so seduced by the fresh sushi, crisp wrap, and savory burger, that i barely had time to enjoy any music at all. oh…and did i mention the alcohol?Tags: burger, heineken, red bull, sushi, tempeh, tofu, wraps
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coachella saturday was the day of technical difficulties. the screens went out during death cab for cutie‘s set, when M.I.A. took the stage the lights broke, and the biggest technical difficulty of all made us several hours late for the festival, causing us to miss the beloved MGMT.
luckily, the food was even better than it was on friday! god bless vegan rockers—at coachella, i reap the benefits of their dietary choices.
Tags: artichoke, coachella, curry, death cab for cutie, hot chip, kraftwerk, mia, potishead, rock, vegan
combination plate: coconut rice with dal and tomato pea curry $8
friday morning we packed up our bags and headed to the desert for 3 days of festival madness. i must admit, i was looking forward to the music, but not much else. i figured the entire event would be a huge pain in the ass that i’d ultimately regret.
luckily, the food at coachella turned out to be a very pleasant surprise. it was definitely a highlight and one of the main things making me look forward to coachella 2009 (bear in mind, i have no idea who is on the line up yet, so that isn’t saying much!).
vegan tofu naanwich: curry sauce, vegetables and tofu served on a piece of naan. $7
friday night at around 9pm we were completely spent. we’d spent hours in the car, an eternity in the parking lot, and had walked miles around the polo field in hundred-degree-heat from band to band. when it came time to look for dinner options, i would have been satisfied with just a basket of fries or potato chips.Tags: bands, coachella, curry, rock, tofu
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i love going to see opening bands when i don’t care about the main act. it’s awesome. i get to stand right up front in a semi-empty venue and watch the band as the rest of the crowd (who will have to wait hours until the show starts) pours in. and going home before the main act begins means i don’t have 3 hours of downtime, with nothing to do except drink ridiculously expensive and shitty bottled beer, as i wait for them to take the stage.
so, imagine how happy i was when i went to see the fuck buttons open for caribou at the el rey, and i found out the bar was selling large cups of tap beer. they were plastic cups, i admit, and they cost $8…but they were 20 oz! budweiser, bud light, and even stella were all readily available. now i know even if i need to go see a headliner at the el rey and stand around waiting for several hours, at least i can pass the time by drinking cold draught stella.
on a side note, the fuck buttons were awesome…totally unique. it’s not like at every show you get to see someone screaming unintelligible ramblings into a fisher price microphone.
here is one of their tracks that i quite enjoy.
sweet love for planet earth
i recommend checking them out while they are still an opening act, then you can leave when they are done and still get home early just like i did! i know that makes me sound fucking old, but going to gigs is a stressful hassle. thank god i always have the beer to rely on.
overall, the el rey bar gets a B! I love the fact that they have stella on tap, but have to take some points off for the high prices and the plastic cups.
Tags: bands, beer, concerts, el rey, fuck buttons, gigs
it takes A LOT of work to see a band in LA these days. you have to order your tickets in advance online, pay exorbitant processing fees, spend ages looking for a parking spot that winds up being miles from the venue, and wait through numerous supporting acts in hopes that the band you paid to go see hits the stage sometime before midnight. it’s a nightmare.
what you don’t need on a hellacious night like this is for a snobby bartender to charge you $8 to pour a warm bottled beer into a plastic cup, without giving you eye-contact. and that’s exactly what you’ll get at the avalon.
the service is crappy, the selection is poor, and the prices are unreasonable. it’s one of the worst venues i’ve been to in LA, as far as beer goes. if a band you love happens to be at the avalon, i recommend you go see them…just be sure to hit up a bar in advance.
on a side note, if you ever have the chance, i definitely suggest you see louis xiv. i’ve seen them 4 times and each show has been an absolute treat. not only are they great performers and incredible musicians, but as an added bonus you get to play the game, “what will jason hill be drinking on stage tonight?”! last night he was swigging straight from a bottle of hennessy, the time before that it was a bottle of chianti (basket and all), and before that it was a martini in a proper glass. i don’t know where he can possibly go from here. absinthe maybe?
here’s an mp3 from their latest album. enjoy. it sounded just as good in person.Tags: beer, concerts, hollywood, louis xiv, music