• February 20th, 2011quarrygirlhugo's tacos, LA restaurants

    haven’t you heard?! both hugo’s tacos locations are offering a 25% discount on vegan items from 5pm until close when you mention “quarrygirl”, and the OFFER ENDS TODAY! get over there and enjoy some insane vegan-friendly mexican food at a cheaper price!

    vegan chocolate soft serve root beer float

    as if you didn’t have enough motivation to head to hugo’s tacos, did you know that the atwater village location always has TWO flavors of VEGAN SOFT SERVE? and that they offer VEGAN ROOT BEER FLOATS? i’m not making this up…

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  • kid size temptation soft serve from chicago soy dairy with vegan chocolate chips. $2.75

    kid size temptation soft serve from chicago soy dairy with vegan chocolate chips. $2.75

    summer time is officially here, and that means it’s ice cream season! as the weather in los angeles heats up to apocalyptic temperatures, don’t let the fact that you’re a vegan stop you from indulging in a cool, creamy treat. head on over to carvel ice cream in west LA and pick up some of their delicious temptation vegan soft serve from none other than the folks at chicago soy dairy. that’s right, carvel is the first place in los angeles to carry this tasty and realistic non-dairy soft serve from the company that brought us teese and dandies.

    i stopped by carvel recently, and when i told the girl behind the counter i was vegan, she was very friendly and accommodating. she pointed me to a selection of vegan sorbets, vegan toppings, and gave me a sample of vanilla non-dairy soft serve. that’s right, the elusive VEGAN SOFT SERVE. since it’s so hard to find in this city, of course i had to get some. i ordered a kid-size portion and topped it off with vegan chocolate chips. yum……it totally hit the spot! i wasn’t sure at the time, but later i found out that the soft serve i ate was indeed temptation, stuff i have been hearing about from vegans across the country for quite some time. i am so glad that this stuff has made it over to los angeles, because it’s so ridiculously creamy and “real” tasting.

    the girl also explained that they’d be getting even more vegan soft serve flavors in by the end of the month…so that pretty much seals it, i know i will be back at carvel very soon. i have heard the chocolate temptation soft serve is THE BEST.


    in addition to temptation vegan ice cream and friendly employees, carvel also has lovely balcony seating and 3 levels of free parking. it’s located on the top floor next to ralphs on pico in west LA, so don’t miss it. carvel is a great place to unwind with some old fashioned soft serve and take a break from the summer heat. i haven’t eaten ice cream like this since i was a kid…and it’s vegan!


    carvel ice cream
    9618 W Pico Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA 90035
    (310) 278-5411

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  • December 8th, 2008quarrygirlinterim cafe, LA restaurants

    the interim cafe on wilshire in santa monica is a gem for the vegan community, and it doesn’t get nearly enough attention. we all know about the awesome and star-studded (recently shut down for a cockroach infestation) newsroom cafe, a trendy joint on robertson boasting a vegan-friendly menu and high-class clientele. well, the interim cafe has the same calibre food as the newsroom (by that i mean, the menu was created the same chef), and even more cruelty-free options than its vegan-friendly cousin.

    check out the menu here:

    the interim cafe offers a huge menu, and sooo much of it is vegan. they have plenty of meat, don’t get me wrong, but they also have huge sections dedicated to only animal-free items. they even offer a slew of vegan baked goods and even vegan soft serve frozen yogurt. if i lived in santa monica, i would be eating here constantly. there is so much to choose from, it’s kind of overwhelming.

    my husband and i ate at the interim cafe over the weekend and were both overall pleased with the selection, service, and quality food. out of the 5 vegan burgers to choose from, my husband went with the nyc veggie b.

    nyc veggie b: smothered in burgundian woodsy mushroom sauce. with a side organic salad. $9

    nyc veggie b: smothered in burgundian woodsy mushroom sauce. with a side organic salad. $9

    i had a bite, and the burger was pretty tasty. i wouldn’t say it’s one of the best vegan burgers in los angeles, or anything like that…but it was simple, pleasant, and healthy-tasting. the mushrooms definitely added some deliciousness, and it was a pretty good deal at nine bucks with a side salad.

    i decided on the tofu breakfast burrito with vegan sausage, and it was excellent.

    tofu breakfast burrito with vegan sausage: spicy salsa tofu, vegan cheese and vegan sausage. $8

    tofu breakfast burrito with vegan sausage: spicy salsa tofu, vegan cheese and vegan sausage. $8

    if you hit up the interim cafe, i highly suggest you do it before noon so you can order a dish with organic hemp tofu. the way they cook and season the tofu is absolutely incredible. their breakfast burrito is off the chain and the vegan sausage is some of the best i’ve ever had. my only qualm with this dish is that it’s pretty small for $8, and i think they forgot my side. i didn’t realize until long after i’d eaten that the menu says it comes with your choice of breakfast potatoes, sliced tomatoes or a fresh fruit cup. the breakfast potatoes would have gone down really well with this burrito. either way, i am looking forward to going back and eating up more stuff from the breakfast menu.

    lastly, i couldn’t leave the interim cafe without trying one of the many tempting vegan desserts. it was a tough choice between a chocolate chip cookie and some frozen yogurt, but i ended up going with the soft serve as its such a rarity. deeeeeeeelicious.

    chocolate vegan soft serve frozen yogurt. $2.50

    chocolate vegan soft serve frozen yogurt. $2.50

    the fro yo at the interim cafe was fucking great. it was so delicious and tasted really smooth and healthy at the same time. it didn’t taste like ice cream, it wasn’t creamy like the soft serve at hugo’s tacos. this stuff was more dense and flavorful, and the texture reminded me of the frozen yogurt i used to get as a kid at penguins. the serving was small, but fairly priced at just $2.50. it was the perfect size, considering i was stuffed with so many other things the vegan-friendly menu had to offer. even on a cold day, this soft serve was by far the highlight of my meal.

    so if you haven’t eaten at interim cafe already, get your ass over there as soon as possible. the food is great, the prices are reasonable and the selection is unreal. plus, they’ve had a make-over and now have tons of comfy seating. i really love this place and will be hitting it up again very soon. i can never ever ever get enough vegan soft serve.

    interim cafe
    530 Wilshire Blvd
    Santa Monica, CA 90401
    (310) 319-9100

    monday – friday 8am to 8pm
    saturday and sunday 9am to 3pm

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  • November 24th, 2008quarrygirlhugo's tacos, LA restaurants

    for so long i have been on the hunt for vegan soft serve. when i was 12 years old, i took a 2 week trip to the uk and lived off a glorious and ubiquitous brand of ice cream called mr. whippy. at least two cones per day maintained my mandatory 7th grade sugar high and kept me happy & full of energy. it was similar to mcdonalds soft serve, but 1000x better. creamy and sweet, white frozen matter swirled into a magical and delicate-about-to-melt dessert. totally heavenly. since becoming a vegan 4 years ago, i have found nothing that comes even close. sure, we have soy dream, tofutti and the marvelous scoops. but none have that good old-fashioned soft serve quality.

    that is…until now. thanks to my trusty tipsters liz (¡yo soy!) and sunny, i found that hugo’s tacos in atwater village offers a vegan soft serve that can scratch my itch. rich, creamylicious, and double-flavored, this chocolate-caramel soft serve makes me feel like i’m eating that old familiar fast food ice cream.

    caramel and chocolate vegan soft serve.

    caramel and chocolate vegan soft serve.

    the soft serve at hugo’s tacos was nothing to be scoffed at. rich and decadent, flavorful and tasty; i couldn’t ask for much more. they shun the classic vanilla flavor for the more adventurous caramel, but other than that, this treat is just the way you remember it. the choice between 2 flavors, or a decadent swirl means i WON’T be disappointed! PLEASE NOTE, this freez-a-licious awesomeness is only available at the atwater village location. sorry valley-dwellers, you will have to make the trek to hipsterville for this treat.

    next up, hugo’s tacos offers up more for vegans than just ice cream and mexican food. they also have the newly-introduced burger. while it’s nothing to get too excited about, the hugo’s tacos burger is a fucking steal for the price. juicy, flavorful and filling, it is incredible…albeit a bit on the small side.

    veggie burger: griddle-cooked and finished. served with lettuce, tomato and special sauce. plus french fries...not much extra $!

    veggie burger: griddle-cooked and finished. served with lettuce, tomato and special sauce. plus french fries...not much extra $!

    now, strict-ish vegans like myself beware: the veggie burger by default comes with a chipotle honey sauce. opt for it without the sauce if that offends you, and the burger is every bit if not EVEN MORE tasty. for a crappy, under 5 bucks with fries “taco stand” burger, i was quite impressed. this dish doesn’t look like much, but it actually tasted pretty fucking nice. good sauce and a well-grilled patty on a scrummy bun—what more do i need? considering the hours and price of this joint, my fellow vegans, you couldn’t do much better.

    lastly, let’s not forget the actual TACOS at hugo’s tacos! modest little corn tortillas layered and topped with incredible vegan offerings and freshly made salsa. yum! this time i got the soyrizo filling with the salsa negra. super hot, smokey seasoning along with delectable fake mexi-meat made this a taco to be remembered. yeah, it was small…but the crazy flavors made up for it. plus, this taco clocked in with tons of taste at under 3 bucks, and at the time, i was at the time saving myself for the more exciting and more difficult-to-come-by soft serve.

    taco with soyrizo and salsa negra. $2.75

    taco with soyrizo and salsa negra. $2.75

    the mini taco was small, yet savory. considering you could get a portion for six bucks large enough to feed a horse, i was quite happy to settle on the little size. i left hugo’s feeling full and glad to have been there, not stuffed and remorseful. at under $12, this 3 course meal for 2 (although we shared a bit) proved to be good food for good prices, without a shred of regret.

    not to mention the outdoor seating and kickass friendly service. if you haven’t been, you need to check out the hugo’s tacos in atwater village. this HT beats it’s sister stand in studio city, purely because of the vegan soft serve option. they seem to have a bigger menu as well, although i could be wrong because maybe the valley branch has expanded and i just don’t know about it.

    hugo's tacos in atwater village.

    hugo's tacos in atwater village.

    some ungrateful hipsters have torn this place to shreds on yelp, but seriously, pay them no heed. they are only bitching because hugo’s costs maybe a buck more per dish than the scary roach coaches filled with lard that they are used to. imho, hugo’s tacos is WELL WORTH IT.

    long story short: haul your ass east and get some fucking great vegan mexican food, burgers, fries, and soft serve. your inner-junk-food fiend will LOVE you for it!

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