• March 17th, 2011quarrygirlbay area, more restaurants (not LA), san francisco

    on a recent trip to the bay area we decided to check out the plant cafe, a sleek healthy restaurant with loads of vegan options, located on san francisco’s pier 3.

    it was late afternoon when we visited and we weren’t super hungry—so after browsing plant’s menu online, we went with the plan to share a tempeh reuben. however when we arrived at 3pm, the hostess presented us with a special happy hour menu, which didn’t list the sandwich. this was okay though, because this menu was loaded with great vegan items from sliders to appetizers, and everything was small and cheap. perfect!

    we grabbed a seat across from the long bar and set about deciding what to order. the decor in plant was absolutely lovely—roomy and comfortable with large tables, high ceilings, and moody lighting. it was pretty empty when we were there as well, which suited our misanthropic nature.

    they had some pretty tempting boozy creations on the happy hour menu, as well as beer and wine. we were already pretty buzzed from an afternoon drinking session at magnolia though, so we decided to pass on the alcohol this time (crazy, i know!). we started with a plate of the patatas bravas to share, which was excellent…

    patatas bravas. $5

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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 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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  • July 23rd, 2010quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), seattle

    if you are looking for the ultimate meat-free dining experience in seattle, plum bistro is definitely your place. the gourmet restaurant is located on capitol hill and serves amazing all vegan cuisine for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. the food can be a bit pricey (think $14-$18 for an entree), but it’s fantastic and well worth it. one little secret that you can’t find on plum’s website though, is that they have a HAPPY HOUR sundays from 4-10pm and monday thru friday from 3-6pm, where food and drinks are super cheap. we hit up plum for the happy hour deals a couple weeks ago with a friend, and ate enough food to feed a small country for under 60 bucks. it was an excellent time.

    spicy mac n yease: our signature mac n cheese $5 happy hour special (normally $7)

    we started with a plate of the “mac n yease” which was down from $7 to five bucks for the happy hour special. i have been wanting to try this ever since this.charming.man raved about it back in january, and i must say it did not disappoint! it was spicy, creamy, flavorful, and honestly the best vegan mac and cheese i’ve ever eaten. there were mushy globs of cheese in between the noodles, just like the real thing, and little burned bits around the edges. i’d say plum is worth visiting for the mac n yease alone—it blows all other mac and cheeses out of the water.

    sweet tea white russian: firefly sweet tea, soy milk, orange spice and cane sugar. $5

    one catch about the happy hour menu is, you can’t order from it without buying a drink…but don’t worry, they have non-alcoholic stuff for all you xpeoplex. i went with the white russian because it’s my favorite mixed drink, and it’s impossible to find a vegan version at bars here in los angeles. the only other place i’ve had a vegan white russian outside of my house was at tube in portland, and plum’s was a million times better. the sweet tea vodka/soy milk mixture came in a sugar-rimmed glass, complete with a cherry on top. i absolutely loved it.

    mini burgers $2 each.

    we got a couple of mini burgers from the happy hour menu, because come on, who can resist vegan sliders?! plum has several to choose from including the crazy jamaican, tofu bbq seitan, quinoa, and el basito caliente. i am pretty sure the ones we ordered were the crazy jamaican and el basito caliente, and they were delicious. they were pretty big as well, you could fill up on a few of these and have dinner for 6 bucks.

    quinoa nachos. $4

    we also got a plate of quinoa nachos, which were a great deal for $4. this dish of blue chips came topped with an amazing creamy sauce, pico de gallo, guacamole and melted cheese. i am pretty sure the cheese on the nachos was follow your heart, which i am not a big fan of, but they were still pretty good.

    gourmet garlic fries with jalapeno sauce. $4

    next up was an order of gourmet garlic fries with jalapeno sauce, and they were super tasty. plum has a huge list of fries and sauces to choose from, and we originally ordered the “cheese w/ seitan bits” option. unfortunately/fortunately, they messed up our order and brought us the garlic fries, which wound up being great. the jalapeno sauce was to die for—rich gooey, and spicy—it went perfectly with the thick crispy fries.

    vegan hot dog. $4

    we also got a “vegan hot dog,” which to our surprise wound up being a high-quality field roast sausage! man i love field roast, so this was a nice treat. it came smothered in crazy good sauces and topped with sauerkraut. amazing!

    orange-balsamic glazed tempeh with thai-spiced mashed yams and bitter greens. $17

    we had our fill of cheap junk food snacks, but our friend wanted to be a little bit highbrow, and order something from the dinner menu as well. she got the orange-balsamic glazed tempeh with thai-spiced mashed yams and bitter greens. she let me try it and, WOWZA….it was awesome! the yams especially were not to be believed, such amazing flavor. i have a feeling that this is the kind of gourmet fine-dining food most people visit plum for, and plum knows how to do it well.

    completely gratuitous

    this was by far one of our best meals in seattle, and one of the best i’ve had in a long time. plum really has everything going for it: they are an all vegan restaurant with excellent food, they serve mixed drinks as well as beer and wine, and they have a nice fancyish yet comfy atmosphere where you can relax and hang for awhile. if you are in seattle, i would put this at the top of your “must visit” list, because plum is simply amazing. i can’t wait to return and try out their brunch!

    plum bistro
    1429 12th Ave E Ste B
    Seattle, WA 98122
    (206) 838-5333

    PS: the happy hour menu isn’t posted plum’s website, so i’ve uploaded it here for your enjoyment…

    click to enlarge

    click to enlarge

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  • July 3rd, 2009quarrygirldesert rose, LA restaurants


    what’s better than a happy hour with $3 beers and $5 martinis? a happy hour with all that, plus a vegan menu, that’s what! desert rose, the upscale bar/restaurant in los feliz has introduced a separate animal-free menu with everything from bar snacks to pasta & sandwiches…and even cruzer pizzas with daiya cheese. they’ve even veganized the drinks at the bar, adding organic martinis and cocktails sweetened with agave.

    finally a bar in los angeles with a full separate vegan menu, i can’t tell you how excited i am. check out the new menu and all the food they are offering here. i am making it my mission to try it all, and so far i’m doing pretty well. these are the things i’ve tasted so far…

    Garlic “Cheese” Fries  $7

    Garlic “Cheese” Fries $7

    the vegan garlic cheese fries at desert rose are absolutely phenomenal. perfectly cooked, they come topped with melted daiya cheese. these fries make for a great bar snack, and taste just like the cheesy garlic fries i remember eating as a vegetarian.


    i can also highly recommend the portabello and cheese panini, epic sandwich success!

    Portobello Mushroom & “Cheese” Panini with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, Mixed  Green Salad or Fresh Fruit  $14

    Portobello Mushroom & “Cheese” Panini with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, Mixed Green Salad or Fresh Fruit $14

    it also comes with melted daiya cheese and a thick fresh slab of tasty marinated portobello. the bread they serve it on is exceptional, crispy on the outside, soft in the middle, and packed with flavor. i had to double check that it was vegan, it tasted so damn good.


    they also whip up a mean house made hummus that comes topped with a kalamata olive and drizzled with olive oil. i know hummus sounds pretty standard, but desert rose does it right. thick, just the right amount of oil, and a really rich flavor.

    Housemade Hummus with Pita Bread $5

    Housemade Hummus with Pita Bread $5

    the sweet potato fries are also top notch and the serving portion is pretty huge. for you vegans who love sweet potato fries, i can tell you that these are some of the best in town.

    Sweet Potato Fries  $5

    Sweet Potato Fries $5

    they have salads as well, including a garbanzo and edamame salad topped with crispy tofu. i only had a few bites of this thing because it was full of bell peppers (which i hate), and other than the red demons it was pretty damn good…especially the fried tofu on top.

    Garbanzo & Edamame Salad with Mixed Greens, Tomatoes & Crispy Tofu with a Sherry-Walnut  Vinaigrette   $6/$9

    Garbanzo & Edamame Salad with Mixed Greens, Tomatoes & Crispy Tofu with a Sherry-Walnut Vinaigrette $6/$9

    while the portobello panini is definitely my favorite at desert rose, the falafel sandwich is awesome as well. huge, soft green falafel balls all rolled up in soft pita with with fresh vegetables and creamylicious tahini.

    Falafel Sandwich with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, Mixed Green Salad or Fresh  Fruit $7

    Falafel Sandwich with choice of French Fries, Sweet Potato Fries, Mixed Green Salad or Fresh Fruit $7

    when i was at desert rose, the chef offered to make me a sandwich that wasn’t on the menu, a mediterranean vegetable wrap with melted daiya cheese. oh my, it was delicious. i think you could add melted daiya to anything and it would drastically improve it, because it took this vegetable wrap from damn good to fucking incredible. even though it’s not on the menu, i’m sure if you ask for it, they would be happy to whip this up for you.

    Vegetable Wrap with Daiya Cheese

    Vegetable Wrap with Daiya Cheese

    and in addition to all the mouth-watering food pictured above, desert rose also offers 7 different vegan pizzas topped with daiya cheese from cruzer next door. now you can enjoy a delicious cruzer pie with a bottle of wine in a scenic setting.


    if you haven’t been to desert rose already, you should get over there stat. it’s a great bar in its own right, and now they have added a bunch of vegan options that are available all day (not just during happy hour). there’s really nowhere like it in los angeles. this is definitely my new spot for drinking and eating good food.


    desert rose
    1700 Hillhurst Ave
    Los Feliz, CA 90027
    (323) 666-1166

    oh, and one more thing: desert rose’s vegan menu is all thanks to farm sanctuary’s vegan outreach program. i could not be more grateful.

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  • November 20th, 2008quarrygirlnews

    tonight is last night was the 2 year anniversary of the vegan happy hour and potluck at the short stop in echo park!

    come check it out, it was awesome to drink some beer and eat some fine vegan foods. 5 to 9pm.

    hope to do it again some time! maybe next week!

    the short stop
    1455 W Sunset Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA 90026
    (213) 482-4942

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