On our way back home from Vancouver to San Francisco, Ben and I made a pit stop in Portland, Oregon. This was my first time visiting Portland and although it was a short trip, I made every second count by eating our way through Portland, one vegan meal at a time.
My goal is to stay at all the Ace Hotel
locations. I started this bucket list a few years ago to give myself a reason to travel. They now have 10 locations, and so far I’ve stayed at the Palm Springs, Los Angeles, and New York locations and now I can check Portland off the list.
All the Ace Hotel's are connected to a Stumptown Coffee
, so the hotel is always filled with the delicious aroma of coffee. So, when in Ace Hotel, I got a decaf soy latte.
On the other side of the hotel is a really neat restaurant, Clyde Common
, that is attached to the Ace hotel. We didn't dine at the Clyde Common, we just had a drink at the bar one night before heading out to dinner.
All the Ace Hotel's also have an old school photo booth. Where there is a photo booth, you'll see me taking photos!
I love the hipster vibe of the Ace Hotel. The hotel has an old feel to it with lots of characteristics but you can tell the hotel is newly updated. Every detail of the small rooms have been thought out. They always have interesting artwork on the walls and a record player in every room. The Ace Hotel in Portland was especially hipster because that’s just what Portland is, a hipster city.
The main reason for our trip was for the VegOut Event
. We attended the first annual vegan beer and food festival VegOut in Scottsdale, Arizona
during our stay at Spring Training. We loved it so much that we wanted to show our support by attending the next VegOut event which happened to be in Portland!
Ben had the best T-shirt at the event, we had a lot of people stopping and asking him where he got his shirt. (Currently sold out on the PETA website) At the event there were lots of vendors selling really awesome vegan T-shirts. I love how clever they are, I wanted them all but I got a crop top from Gangster Vegan
. (Each T-shirt purchased will feed a child a hot vegan meal)
Attending any food festival it’s always hard to decide what to eat. We decided to go for something new and different than our norm.
For a starter to help curb our hangry pangs, we started with a vegan sushi burrito from Flourish the Food Truck
. I just love a good sushi burrito. Just simple sushi rice with crunchy veggies all wrapped in nori. Just simple perfection. Easy to eat while we walked to find our next snack.
We stopped for “The Triad” at Dinger’s Deli
, which is a 100% plant based delicatessen in Portland, Oregon. We ordered “The Triad” which was all three of their most popular deli sandwiches; the veg ball, the italian, and the cubano. My favorite was the veg ball, and unfortunately it was also Ben’s favorite. So you can imagine we were both fighting for bites.
“Ichiza” means one sitting or the zen principle of stopping to contemplate one’s path. We had to try their Shumai with Vegan crab roe and veggie dumplings.
Fun Fact: before I went vegan my favorite food was Salmon Roe or Ikura, my mom used to buy me a large container of it and I would eat them by the spoonful. (Notice how I said “them” because I was literally eating baby nemo’s)
AVIV Ice Cream
We cooled down with some ice cream from AVIV
. I got the mint chip flavor and Ben got Rootbeer. We rarely have dessert so this was such a treat! And the perfect way to end our VegOut Event. It was the cherry on top of another great event.
Besides eating delicious vegan food and drinking refreshing kombucha,VegOut Events has great speakers to educate the community. While we enjoyed our lunch, we watched the “Vegan Athlete Panel” Featuring: Will Benitez, Lyndy Davis, Aaron & Jenny Adams, and Dz Vegan kid athletes. Where the audience asked questions about their diet and how to food prep for a busy day. I liked that there was all different types of athletes on the panel, one was a marathoner, bikini bodybuilder, and three little girl gymnasts.
After our food binge, we watched the Sustainable Duo
where they educated us on how they live a sustainable lifestyle and how the little things can have an impact.
I learned a lot from Brenden and Carly, their motto is: “We exist to make a positive impact on minds, hearts, & the planet. We are just going back to the basics by living minimally and ethically.”
And lastly, my favorite was Grey of Plant Based Drippin
. His rap performance was my highlight of VegOut. Grey’s energy was high, he got the crowd singing and all his lyrics had meaning. I just love that he’s doing something he loves and spreading positive energy and educating his listeners about veganism and equality.
Portland Vegan Food Tour
I’ve been looking forward to visiting Portland because I knew they had lots of delicious vegan restaurants. Since it was such a short trip, I had to choose wisely.
Our first stop on our Portland food tour was Sizzle Pie
. The Ace Hotel was located two blocks away from Sizzle Pie, so after we checked in, we headed straight for pizza. We couldn’t decide on one of their vegan pizzas on the menu, so we decided to customize our own. We decided on a large vegan pizza, with vegan pepperoni, olives, mushrooms, and spinach. YUM! I seriously crave this pizza! The slices were huge but thin and the crust was fluffy with the perfect crunch.
I was craving mexican food one night so we found Los Gorditos
. Upon walking in, I saw three different sets of menus clearly labeled: “Vegan”, “Vegge”, and “Meat”. I love that they labeled each menu because it shows that the restaurant is clearly catering to different dietary restrictions. I ordered the enchiladas with soy curls (which was similar to shredded “chicken” texture) with rice and beans and topped with vegan sour cream. These enchiladas totally hit my mexican food craving spot! Ben ordered soyrizo tacos and guess what? They had Topo Chico, which made this a perfect vegan mexican dinner.
The Bye and Bye
After vegging out all day at VegOut, we continued vegging out at The Bye and Bye
. The Bye and Bye is an 100% plant based restaurant and bar. I loved the hipster decor and dive bar vibe.
Your ID is checked at the door by a bouncer, and you order your food and drinks at the bar. When we ordered the bartender warned us that our food order was going to take at least 45 minutes. We didn’t mind waiting since we had cocktails (and since we’ve been eating all day), but our food arrived fairly quickly.
We started with the pretzel knots with house made cashew cheese sauce and stone ground mustard. And for my main, I ordered the spaghetti and meatballs and Ben ordered the BBQ brussel bowl. Everything was delicious and worth the wait. It was a perfect evening in Portland, we sat outside on a cute picnic table and enjoyed our delicious vegan dinner.
Portland is well known for the food truck movement, so of course we had to experience it. There were so many great food trucks that we couldn’t decide on just one, so we decided on 3.
Vegan dumplings at Shanghai’s Best.
Falafel Gyro at Shawarma Express
Veggie Drunken Noodles from Bang Saen
Everything was so delicious and fairly easy to eat while standing. There weren’t any tables and chairs in the area and I’m not a stand and eat kind of gal, so I would say that would be the only negative about my food truck experience.
The top must do on every Portland tourists is VooDoo Doughnut. I was really happy to see that they had vegan doughnuts available because I am such a tourist and I love doughnuts! Since it was just Ben and I, and we don’t eat sweets very often, we just got two doughnuts. The VooDoo Doll and the chocolate cock and balls (I asked for white chocolate but they didn’t have it, HA)
Voo Doo Doll and Cock & Balls |
No Days off in Portland
Every good food tour should always begin with a good sweat session. Since I am such a Barry’s Boot Camp
babe, I like to find fitness studios that offer a similar workout.
Orange Theory Fitness
Portland doesn’t have a Barry’s studio but they do have Orange Theory Fitness
. If you’ve never tried OTF before, it’s a heart rate based interval training. You wear a heart rate monitor during your 60 minute workout. “Backed by the science of Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption (or EPOC), Orangetheory’s heart rate monitored training is designed to maintain a target zone that stimulates metabolism and increases energy. We call it the afterburn. Our members burn an estimated 500 to 1,000 calories in 60 minutes. And keep burning calories for up to 36 hours.”
After my Orange Theory Fitness class, my instructor knew I wasn’t from the area and recommended a yoga studio for me to try out, YoYo Yogi
. I took the “Detox” class early sunday morning at YoYo Yogi. I love a good hot yoga session where I feel like I’m sweating out all the food and alcohol I’ve consumed.
I had such a great time in Portland! It’s definitely not a typical vacation spot for me but I really enjoyed exploring a place I’ve never been to and especially a place that is really accepting of veganism. VegOut put on a great Vegan food and beer festival and I’m excited to attend more events in the future. Keep Portland Weird everyone!