• February 2nd, 2011quarrygirlLA restaurants, mandoline grill, vegan events

    i can’t believe it was nearly a year ago that we welcomed mandoline grill to los angeles.

    since then, they’ve cemented a place in our hearts as one of our favorite food trucks—they are constantly adding to and improving their vegan options, and they even served a completely cruelty-free menu at the first LA vegan beer fest. to put it simply, we love mandoline grill!

    so imagine how stoked we were to find out that at their anniversary party this saturday at verdugo bar, they’ll be giving away a free vegan crispy spring roll with every purchase…

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  • January 15th, 2011quarrygirlbay area, more restaurants (not LA), san francisco

    as much as i love to travel, sometimes when i’m out exploring vegan options in other cities, i get homesick for all the good eats we have here in los angeles.

    vegan tofu sausage with sauerkraut, grilled onions, and mustard. $6

    this is how i felt when i visited san francisco over the holidays. two days into my trip, the xmas spirit had me all weepy and wishing i was back at home, seated comfortably in tony’s darts away with a beer and a vegan sausage. thankfully, my twitter buddy @ks turned me on to the next best thing: rosamunde sausage grill.

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  • December 27th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, rahel vegan cuisine

    we already told you about the new year’s eve shindig over at tony’s darts away, and we just got wind of some more epic gatherings you should know about at rahel ethiopian and surly goat. these parties go from early evening until after midnight, and are pretty close to each other geographically…so we are thinking you should attend at least one of these, if not both. here are the details.

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  • December 26th, 2010mr meanerother

    I have to be honest: It was one of THOSE kinda days. Well, I’m not the world’s most physical guy, but I can lift a box or two. Add to that, I had nothing to do on Christmas Eve Eve, so I was very happy to rock it on down to Orange County in a friend’s truck to help load some chairs, on the promise of “grabbing a beer or two” on the way back.

    Listen – If offered, ALWAYS help your friends get stuff from far afield, as you’ll have a designated driver (they don’t see it that way, but you sure as heck fire should) and if you’re extra lucky they’ll want to pick up the tab pretty much anywhere you go. After all, time and muscles (even my puny ones) = money. Or beer at least. And maybe even vegan food too. Read on….

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  • December 23rd, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, zephyr cafe

    long beach is only about 25 miles away from us here in los angeles, and still, i just don’t go there enough.

    a recent visit to the LBC turned into a marathon session of fun that included vegan food, good beer, and awesome music. i need to get out of LA more often.

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  • December 13th, 2010mr meanermore restaurants (not LA), san diego

    My dear wife, Quarrygirl, says she loves only two things more than me: vegan food and beer. Bearing in mind she writes this blog, her standards for vegan food are stratospheric, and her increasingly sophisticated taste in beer (really brought to the forefront when she co-organized the world’s first Vegan Beer Festival) refines itself almost daily.

    So, faced with the self-wrought challenge of choosing a perfect location for us to spend our 5th wedding anniversary, I wanted to find somewhere romantic and out-of-the-way that had awesome vegan beer AND really good vegan food, under the same roof. Close to home, I was considering Pure Luck and Tony’s Darts Away – two locations that firmly check the above boxes. However, there was one thing missing: Ms. Quarrygirl really likes freshly brewed beer and prefers to consume it at the point of manufacture – a brewery if possible.

    Let’s examine each subject set closely:

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  • November 24th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, tony's darts away

    do we really need another reason to love tony’s darts away? the incredibly vegan-friendly bar already has one of the best beer selections and some of the tastiest food in town. now you are telling me they even indicate on the menu which beers are vegan?! this is unheard of.

    non-vegan beer is called out on tony's menu!

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  • November 20th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, tony's darts away

    what better way to ring in 2011 than with a massive vegan feast and unlimited beer at one of LA’s best bars? that’s what’s going down at tony’s darts away, and i think it’s gonna be the best new year’s eve party in town!

    vegan new year's eve at tony's darts away! GO!

    that’s right, tony’s is offering unlimited beer all night with the option of a non-vegan or vegan feast…plus there will be music by dj randy sosin, a special midnight toast, and a spiffy tony’s 2011 glass. i think this is gonna be the hottest vegan-friendly party of 2010 AND 2011, so make your reservations now. details after the jump!

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  • October 11th, 2010quarrygirlvegan events

    hey everyone! advance tickets are on sale NOW for the los angeles vegan beer fest! get ’em while you can at a special discounted price…

    here are the details:

    tickets now on sale!
    the vegan beer fest is on saturday 11/6/10 at the roxy from 1pm-5pm.
    special advance pricing, just $35 for general admission and $45 for VIP
    ticket price includes unlimited pours of dozens of craft beers. VIPs get to come to the fest an hour early and get greater access.
    a portion of the proceeds will be donated to ARME!

    Prices will soon go up to $45 and $55.

    To buy tickets WITHOUT the ticketmaster fee call 310-278-9457 or visit the roxy theatre
    box office on sunset. opening hours are:
    10am – 6pm monday through friday, plus from 8pm-12am tuesday through sunday

    to buy tickets online, hit up ticketmaster

    if you are interested in volunteering for a bit and then drinking, please fill out our volunteer form! we will be getting back to everyone shortly.

    hurry up and buy tickets people, before the prices go up!

    PS: there will also be TONS of tasty vegan food to purchase and eat at the fest from seabirds truck, mandoline grill, fresh fries, yalla truck, and doomie’s home cookin‘!

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  • October 10th, 2010quarrygirlUncategorized

    obviously this blog is normally about vegan food…but you know that we love to booze it up as well, so i just wanted to give you a heads up about LA beer week. the 11-day celebration of beer culture in los angeles and orange county is already underway, and will culminate with an enormous all you can drink beer festival on sunday 10/17 in downtown LA (hurry and get your tickets NOW!).

    awesome beer events are going down all around LA this week, and the sponsors include several of our BFFs including tony’s darts away, surly goat, verdugo, eagle rock brewery, and drink eat travel. be sure to check out the events calendar for more info, and please try to make it to the festival next sunday. after all YOU NEED TO GET IN SHAPE FOR THE LA VEGAN BEER FEST, okay?!?! consider this a warm up!

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  • September 15th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, sushi & kushi imai

    UPDATE 7/30/11: sad! i just got the following email: “Recently changed to a buffet style only situation. There is one vegan option; miso soup. They don’t even serve edamame anymore. Rather sad.”

    hmmm….let’s think: a vegan-friendly sushi happy hour with $1 beers, $4 pitchers, and $1 bottles of sake? YES PLEASE. not to mention really great rolls, grilled vegetables, and a live band?! what up!

    i’m talking about the daily happy hour (5-7:30pm) at sushi & kushi imai on wilshire. we have already told you about some insane vegan options at an omni eatery this week, and i think sushi & kushi is right up there when you factor in the good food and CHEAP, CHEAP, CHEAP BOOZE.

    pitcher of sapporo. $4

    we hit up sushi & kushi imai, not knowing what to expect. the restaurant is technically located in beverly hills, but it’s super close to mid wilshire and has parking lot where we were lucky enough to find a space. as i said earlier, happy hour runs from 5pm until 7:30, but what we didn’t realize is that it fills up QUICK. we got there at 6pm, and there was limited seating in the bar (the only area of the restaurant where happy hour prices are honored). thankfully, we managed to get a decent 2 top table, and we quickly realized that the restaurant was hoppin’ for a good reason. we started with a pitcher of sapporo for only FOUR DOLLARS. yes, you heard me right, a 4 buck pitcher of beer. can’t beat that in this town!

    bowl of edamame. $1.95

    to eat, we began with a standard bowl of edamame from the happy hour menu. it was $1.95 and came with a generous amount of salted soy beans. the perfect appetizer with the refreshing beer.

    2 cucumber rolls, 1 vegetable roll (asparagus, avocado, mushrooms, carrots) $12.50

    the vegan sushi options are somewhat limited (think avocado, cucumber, and vegetable rolls), but what they do have is excellent. we got 2 cucumber rolls and a vegetable roll to share, for a combined total of $12.50. the rolls were perfectly prepared, and the vegetables were fresh and crispy. i must say, this was a welcome change from the mock meat type of sushi i’m used to eating. oh, and they can substitute brown for white rice at an extra charge, if that’s your thing.


    after drinking the pitcher of beer, we decided to move onto something a little more strong, and were delighted to see that small jugs of hot sake were only $1. a buzz for a buck! yes, it is possible at sushi & kushi imai.

    lotus kushi. $2

    i’d never heard of kushi before, but apparently it’s food grilled on a skewer, and at happy hour there were tons of vegetable options. it was hard to choose between the japanese pumpkin, okra, and sweet potato…but we ended up going with the lotus, which did not disappoint. two massive crunchy slices of lotus root that were crispy around the edges and served with a trio of dipping sauces, two of which were vegan. when you order, please let them know that you don’t want the mayo-based sauce—but the other two, miso and bbq, are safe to eat.

    sauteed mushrooms (not under the happy hour menu): sauteed enoki and shiitake mushrooms with sake and vegan butter. $8.50

    lastly, even though it wasn’t on the discounted happy hour menu, we split an order of sauteed mushrooms. they just sounded so good and when we saw they had the word “vegan” in the menu description, we just couldn’t resist. this dish came with succulent sauteed enoki and shiitake mushrooms all whipped up with sake and vegan butter. absolutely amazing.

    by the time we were wrapping up our meal, a live band had started playing in the bar area. we decided to order another bottle of sake (hey for $1, why not?) and make a night of it. we were so happy and full of good food, i couldn’t believe it when the check arrived and it was only $33! how is that even possible? we consumed 1 pitcher of beer, 2 bottles of sake, 1 order of edamame, 3 rolls of sushi, 1 order of kushi, and an entree-size portion of mushrooms…all for $33?! and we even strayed from the cheap happy hour menu to order the mushroom dish! next time we are gonna stick to sushi and sake, and keep our tab to under 20 bucks. where else can you do that in beverly hills?

    the happy hour at sushi & kushi imai is awesome, and i know we’ll be back often. my advice is to get there early, secure a nice table, and take your time eating. you’re guaranteed to have a lovely meal. cheers!

    sushi & kushi imai
    8300 Wilshire Blvd
    Beverly Hills, CA 90211
    (323) 655-2253
    happy hour is everyday from 5pm – 7:30pm BAM!

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  • August 20th, 2010mr meanerLA restaurants, seabirds

    Do you remember the moment in The Wizard Of Oz where the celluloid goes from monochrome to color? Well, I had a similar experience last week when I drove alongside a dusty railroad track to a barren industrial park on the outskirts of downtown Fullerton, Orange County. The monochromatic middle-American dustbowl view turned into vibrant color as I stepped inside our destination: Bootlegger’s Brewery.

    Suddenly I was surrounded by brew kettles, mash tuns, piles of kegs and a makeshift “tap room” (which was actually a corner of the brewery itself).

    What’s more, as I looked back out toward the parking lot, I could see Seabirds, California’s only entirely vegan food truck, pulling up and getting ready to serve food.

    Now, many of us have been to plush beer bars with comfortable seating and a vast array of beer on tap. Some of us have also been to tap houses: usually less comfortable and with a much smaller choice, but the beer is fresh from the brewery which means it’s as good as you can get. The experience at Bootlegger’s is a little different as you’re actually sitting right inside a working brewery, and the beers are served to you directly from the kegs that have been filled and aged by the brewing team.

    While we waited for Seabirds to set up, we enjoyed a few pints of the outstanding “Old World Hefe”, a traditionally brewed unfiltered ale that was extremely drinkable (some might say, TOO drinkable!). We also enjoyed the “Palomino Pale Ale” which was served via a contraption called a “Hopinator”, a sort-of glass tank containing fresh hops under a little pressure. The beer flows over the hops right before it gets served and they impart a fresh, floral flavor that is to die for. In fact, Bootlegger’s chose Citra hops, a relatively recent American hop strain that’s finding its way into more and more beer varieties.

    At Bootlegger’s, your beer is served from glass preserve jars rather than glasses, and you sit (if you’re lucky enough to get a seat) on plastic lawn chairs either inside the brewhouse or outside in the parking lot. Urban chic it isn’t, but if you care about being in a place with friendly people, great beer and awesome food you will find few places better in Orange County, or anywhere else. Talking of food, we managed to tear ourselves away from drinking to step outside and grab a bite from Seabirds truck, which was open for business just outside the brewhouse.

    Organic Veggie Burrito Bowl: Grilled organic veggies from Tanaka Farm, organic beans, organic brown rice, guacamole, and red or green salsa. $7

    I regularly run into food trucks at various events, and it’s surprising how many of them are quite vegan friendly. As Seabirds is entirely plant-based, though, everything on the menu is up for grabs, and we wasted no time in availing ourselves of a few dishes. First up was a Veggie Burrito in a bowl (kindly made in advance for us with no bell peppers) which was a deceptively tasty collection of chopped vegetables, beans, rice and a tangy salsa/guacamole combination. It was truly remarkable, so fresh and healthy tasting yet full of flavor. I’d certainly have that again, and I bet the burrito is even better.

    Seabirds Burger: Our homemade nut & seed patty topped with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, and seabird sauce. $5

    Next up we were drawn to the Seabird burger, as they proudly proclaim the patty is “home made”. I’m a sucker for home made burger patties as so many places use off-the shelf burgers (at worst Boca, at best Gardein). Not Seabirds! Their burger was perfectly prepared with just the right amount of ingredients – a nut/seed patty with crunchy onion, tomato and fresh lettuce on top of a tangy sauce (also home made) in a wholewheat bun. There’s something about fresh farm-produced organic ingredients that are carefully prepared – they taste SO DAMN GOOD! You can pig out without feeling bloated, and that’s exactly what happened here.

    Hummus and Pita

    Feeling the need to be bloated, though, we also ordered a side of hummus and pita bread and were delighted with its freshness and taste. I sometimes forget how awesome something so simple can be, and Seabirds really delivered a super-creamy hummus that wasn’t too oily. Oh yum.

    We planned to eat some more food, but were just too full. Next time we’re going to go all-out for some of the more exotic dishes like the Beer Battered Avocado Taco, Jerk Jackfruit Taco and the “Bella” – grilled portabella mushroom and pesto sandwich. Oh and for those with a sweet tooth, Seabirds also offers dessert – delicious vegan cupcakes by Luscious Organics.

    Not only is the food stunningly good, but the crew at Seabirds are so pleasant, polite and nice that I felt like picking each one up and hugging them. I tend to do that when I’m drunk, though, so don’t read too much into it.

    I really wish Seabirds would put some extra miles on that spiffy truck and go a few miles further up I5 to LA for some of our events closer to home. The good news, though, is that even if Seabirds can’t come home with you a growler full of fresh Bootlegger’s brew can. 🙂

    As we headed away from Bootleggers, along the dusty railroad line to our car, I took one last look back toward the brewery and food truck and was again reminded of The Wizard of Oz when Dorothy and the gang look down at The Emerald City in the distance – a tempting vista of wonder ahead. As we headed away back to LA things turned into black and white again, but I’m sure that was the pints of Palomino finally taking control of my consciousness.

    Bootlegger’s Brewery
    401 S Richman Ave
    Fullerton, CA 92832
    Thur and Fri 4pm – 9pm, Sat 2pm – 9pm

    Seabirds Truck
    Follow them on Twitter or check their schedule for location.

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  • August 12th, 2010quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), portland

    tube in portland will always have a special place in my heart. the grungy dive bar has so much personality, plus offers loads of vegan items from white russians to happy hour snacks. we hit up tube just about a year ago and instantly fell in love; so imagine how excited we were when we went back recently and found they had expanded their menu. we are talking 3 pages of vegan-friendly goodness; we knew we had to get comfy and stay for a while.

    professor nanotear muffin: a slice of grilled vegan ham and vegan cheese between an english muffin and our homemade spicy chipotle veganaise. $3 or 2 for $5

    we started out with some “professor nanotear muffins” from the bar snacks menu, which are basically little vegan mcmuffins topped with faux ham and vegan cheese. you can get one for 3 bucks, or two for 5…so we went ahead and splurged. these muffins are so simple and would be really easy to make at home, but i just love them. i don’t know of anywhere else you can get such cheap and tasty little vegan snacks at such a cool bar.

    hamm's. $2 each.

    it was happy hour, so we pounded a couple of hamm’s for 2 bucks a piece. not the best beer in the world, but definitely the best beer for this situation.

    as you can see, tube was pretty empty when we were there. we arrived at around 5pm and it was deserted, but i hear it gets PACKED by the nighttime. and there is dancing and stuff, if you are into that.

    vegan white russian!

    after munching on snacks and drinking weak beer, we decided to kick it up a notch with some real food and hard liquor. i REALLY wanted to try one of the new alcoholic milkshakes, but alas the bartender said they had run out of ice cream. so sad. instead i went a vegan white russian, probably my favorite mixed drink out there, and was cheered up immediately.

    vegan mac and chez: a creamy soy cheese/nutritional yeast blend and vegan hot dog bits. served with chips. $6

    foodwise, we split an entree and a sandwich off the new dinner menu, and were quite pleased with our order. first up, the vegan mac and chez—a bowl of spirally noodles all mixed up in creamy sauce with nutritional yeast and hot dog chunks. downright delicious comfort food. it was 8 bucks, but the bowl was big and it tasted damn good.

    vegan fried bologna sandwich: vegan grilled bologna and vegan cheese with ketchup on two pieces of white bread slathered in vegan butter and grilled again. served with chips. $5

    we also got the vegan fried bologna sandwich, which was double grilled and stuffed with fake meat and cheese. again, this meal was solid. the soy bologna was awesome, and the fluffy bread was moist and flavorful. the chips tasted like ruffles straight out the bag, and i would expect nothing less (or more) from a dive bar like tube.

    i honestly hope to visit tube every single time i go to portland. not because the food is so out of this world amazing, but because it’s damn good and the atmosphere is excellent. it’s so much fun to eat junk food in a trashy little bar, the kind of experience that omnivores get to enjoy all the time.

    18 NW 3rd Ave
    Portland, OR 97209
    (503) 241-8823
    open 7 days a week 5pm – 2am
    happy hour 5pm – 10pm
    brunch saturday and sunday 11am – 4pm

    here are some shots of the menu. i want to eat all the vegan stuff on it. please note TUBE ALSO DOES BRUNCH ON WEEKENDS, check out that menu here.

    click to enlarge

    click to enlarge

    click to enlarge

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  • August 11th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, tony's darts away

    have you guys been to tony’s darts away yet?! if not, WTF are you waiting for? it’s the best place for vegan beer lovers in los angeles, period. the almost entirely vegan beer selection is massive (and so are the pours), the menu features some of our favorite products, the service is friendly, and the food is outstanding.

    the ultimate vegan spread: firestone walker union jack ipa, vegan chili, 2 types of hot sauce, vegan beer brat with creole mustard, garlic paste, sauerkraut, and diced onions.

    but we’re not here just to tell you what you already know, we actually have some brief updates about the restaurant. first off, tony’s darts away now carries HOT SAUCE. we have been begging them to stock the spicy stuff for quite sometime, and tony himself even promised in the comments section that they were working on it. for awhile though, we were forced to smuggle in our own. well, not any more! tony’s now carries two hot sauce varieties. one is a standard red chili sauce, and the other is an awesome concoction made by the chef with a vegan mayo base. the mayo one is so freaking good, i could drink it by the gallon. even though tony’s is an omnivorous restaurant, they have decided to make just one version of their creamy hot sauce, and it’s vegan. so that’s pretty cool.

    secondly, tony’s has new buns for their sausages. in the past, people have criticized the buns for being too bready, and that is no longer the case. the new buns are light, soft, and sprinkled with sesame seeds…so tasty. we took the new buns and hot sauces for a whirl (pictured above), with a beer brat topped with creole mustard, garlic paste, sauerkraut, and diced onions. the sausage was excellent, and the addition of creamy hot sauce and the new bun made it the best dog we’ve enjoyed at tony’s. as of last sunday, the new hot sauce was not listed on the menu….so be sure to ask for it if you don’t see it.

    black diamond jagged edge ipa and a half pint salad.

    we also tried a salad for the first time at tony’s, and were pretty impressed. we got the half pint—a mix of california field greens, tomato, cucumber, and house vinaigrette. it was very simple, but fresh and delicious. plus, the portion was pretty big for just 3 bucks! tony’s is in the process of adding a new and more substantial vegan salad to the menu, with tofu and quinoa, and i can’t wait.

    i have had friends tell me more than once that it’s hard to find a seat at tony’s, because the place is always really busy. well, we were there on a sunday afternoon and it was super quiet and comfortable. we were chatting with the staff, and they remarked that saturday nights are usually surprisingly mellow, compared to friday nights which are crazy. just thought i’d mention that!

    i’ve said it before, and i’ll say it again: tony’s darts away rules. the only problem i have with this place is that it’s not closer to my house. get over to burbank and eat at tony’s if you haven’t already. it really is vegan beer and food paradise.

    Tony’s Darts Away
    1710 W. Magnolia Blvd
    Burbank, CA 91506
    (818) 253-1710
    Hours: 11AM-2AM M-SAT & SUN 11AM-1AM

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  • July 21st, 2010quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), portland

    a trip to pdx just wouldn’t be complete without visiting the bye and bye. the all vegan pub located in northeast portland has great food, an impressive beer selection, and is the perfect place to sit and unwind for a few hours. just ask our friend little vegan planet, who has a very awesome story about this place in his latest blog post.

    the menu at the bye and bye is simple yet delicious. a decent selection of bowls, sandwiches, and entrees—like spaghetti or chili pie—are all available for under ten bucks. on our recent visit, we decided to split a sandwich as well as a bowl of 3 sides…

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