Point the first: Sorry I haven't kept up with this blog much this month. I have been cooking (and I've certainly been eating!), I just wasn't feeling very writey. I hope I'll be better now. All apologies.
Point the second: Thank you to those who contacted me to make sure I'm OK. Don't worry, I haven't fallen too hard off the wagon. I'm not smothered in fried foods or cheese or anything like that.
Point the third: I thought I had something else to say here, but I don't remember what it is. Might as well get straight to the catching up, then.
Point the fourth: Before I start talking about everything I've cooked lately, I'd like to briefly mention to things I didn't. The rest of this post will be my two cents on the restaurants I've been to this month.
4 Course Vegan
The food is great, but the atmosphere really makes it. It's like you're going to a secret, professionally catered, dinner party only about two dozen people know about. The atmosphere is so homey you may forget you have to pay at the end. Especially since there's no cashier. We all just walked up and paid the chef as we left.
Despite the name, we actually received five courses:
Cashew cheese and parsnip ravioli with a sweet potato cake topped with a horseradish sauce
Hot-n-Sour Lemongrass Broth with Kabocha Dumpling and Sweet Pea Greens
Rice Flour Crepe with 5-spice Black Beans and Sesame Chile Oil
Masmun Curry with Garnet Yam, Thai Basil and Toasted Cashews
Chocolate Almond Torte with Blood Orange Syrup and Vanilla Cream
All delicious. The portions were small, because it's "gourmet", but five courses of small portions are really enough to fill you up. The main courses seemed quite light, but the dessert was dense, filling up any left over room we may have had. I ended up staying out until after 5 AM that night and didn't stop for any kind of snack.
Very recommended. Would definitely go again, preferably for some sort of occasion.
The V Spot
I've been here a few times and am always pleased with what I order. One word of caution: they really like to slather on the sauce.
Their nachos are amazing. I had them when I still ate dairy and couldn't care less that I wasn't eating the real thing. The chicken parmesean was great and there was SO much of it. I shared it with everyone at the table and everyone left with sauce on their pants. The BBQ seitan wrap is a real treat, sort of maply and all sorts of delicious, but not for eating on the go. After half, my hands looked like the end of the movie Carrie and I needed a bit of assistance getting to a sink to wash up without making a mess. The meatball parmesean hero was great. It's all flattened out, so it's not difficult to handle (naturally, I ate the neat sandwich sitting there and took the messy wrap to go) and it's very, very tasty. The cheese was borderline melty, too.
Wheeler's Frozen Desserts
They had another NYC event last week. They brought ginger, margarita and what I think was mango ice creams, all of which were delightful. Hannah Kaminsky of My Sweet Vegan brought a crumble, bundt cake, cookies, brownies and I'm not even sure what else. The crumble and bundt cake were divine. I brought an enormous batch 5-Spice Almond Cookies from Eat, Drink & Be Vegan, which seemed to be pretty well received (more on that later because that counts as something I made).
If you're in the NYC area, do yourself a favor and visit 'SNice at least once. When I saw the menu, I really wanted to try the Chicken Pot Pie Wrap, but several people suggested the Vegan Panini, so I went with that and was not disappointed. It was heavenly. I don't know who the genius is who thought of smoking the tofu, but I'd like to give him or her a great big kiss. Also, the sandwich is huge. Each half should really be a serving, but I ate the whole thing. And a dessert. I got the Apricot Square and it was all sorts of goodness. It's always exciting to be able to eat sweets I didn't make myself.
Also, I am currently battling an addiction to Caramel Brownie Luna Bars. It's been about a week since my last one. Luna, Lara, Cliff and Odwalla bars are all vegan, but Luna Bars have a crunchy thing going on that I find far too exciting.