double dippin': the party

Roughly 1/10th of total dips that arrived at Double Dippin’

Fueling my dorky, themed party planning obsession, I hosted a dip-themed potluck and party last weekend. Double Dippin': The Party* featured 4 tables of dips: Sweet, Savoury, Miscellaneous, No Holds Barred, and Michele performing the grand & appetizing Vegan Mozzarella Stick-Off in the kitchen.

The record was successfully broken for just how many people can fit into my apartment, surely set high for the number of dips through the door, special dietary needs were met (vegans are so nice!), my cats hid, dip rules were posted, various research was displayed, and I had an opportunity to make a giant pot of beer cheese sauce, among other dippy dishes. Dipshit was officially an endearing term, dip creativity and classicism was off the hook, and I just can’t seem to get this out of my head.

As for the actual food, contributions ranged from traditional pesto to spicy peanut sauce to chili to Russian beet dip to cashew green bean to saucey bourbon to spiced cheesecake to sweet chocolate frosting, and beyond. Beyond!

Smokey Beer Cheese

beer cheese

How To: Smokey Beer Cheese. Follow the Cheesy Sauce recipe from Veganomicon.  Add a diced poblano pepper with the garlic (up the garlic!). After you add the nooch and vegetable broth, throw in cumin, hot paprika, tahini, hot sauce, a bottle of cherished, local microbrew, and a good dash of liquid smoke.  Simmer for at least 20 minutes before making your gluten-fanatic guests happy.

Green Tea, Shallot & Cream Cheese, modified from Eat Tea

Green Tea, Caper & Shallot Cream Cheese

I was more wild about the idea of this over the finished product, but it was worth a shot. And look! garnish!

Raw Banana Coconut Almond Dip

raw banana almond dip

On one hand, sampling this dip made me realize I’m non-officially, but likely, allergic to freaking almonds. On the other, it went over well! It consists of pureed raw almonds, unsweetened coconut and banana. Once again, a pat on the back to the Vita-Mix.

Salt-Free Black Bean, Lemon & Garlic Dip

Picture 005

This was another contribution for the Eat to Live crowd. One of those few ingredient recipes from the internets. It was less creamy than I’d like, but I naturally blame myself, because I forgot the tahini. However, who cares about anything else when there’s a nice garnish?

Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip with Nayonaise

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So creamy! I almost comprehend artichokes now.

Jeff’s Spicy Peanut Sauce

jeff's satay sauce

My friends Lucas and Jeff combined powers to offer a damn fine spread of fried tofu, peanut sauce and tofufffalo style hot sauce.

The Sweet table

Lauren plates my ode to our friend Bram – Peanut Butter Coconut Apple Pie (dip).

lauren at the sweets table

The Bar – featuring homemade Mixed Berry, Raspberry and Lavender Mango syrups. Plenty of makings for both cocktails and mocktails. My friend Emily contributed homemade Raspberry Ginger Shrub that was amazing!

The rest of the refreshments – including Michele’s sparkling punch

This was posted above the No-Holds-Barred dip-as-you-will tator tots & dips table

Picture 136

Clearly the party was an ode to this.

No-Holds-Barred Table – early in the evening

Live action at the No-Holds-Barred table. I spy a spicy sesame cornmeal encrusted tofu dipper at the muffin tray, and churros and chocolate sauce in the back.

Jack & Simon: Bros and their tots – bonus special guest appearance by Portland’s own Pretzel Necklace!

The Savoury table at the pre-party

Stage 1: Dips

*Name Credit belongs to Lucas DeShazer. No surprise.

I didn’t take as many photos as I’d like, perhaps more of the dishes to come…

Next up in themed events coming this way I’m counting down to?  The Vegan Prom of Tomorrow and the second annual Fakin’ Fest!

Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip with Nayonaise

Important Update: My sister has informed me that this is “Spin Dip”. Carry on.

Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip with Nayonaise

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Hello, vegan specialty ingredient time!  This Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip is absolutely a guilty pleasure of a party treat. At my recent Double Dippin’ party, it was one of the first things I noticed polished off! (because I was stoked to make more room for more dips!)

It’s a combination of veganization and pine nut and nooch alteration of every single other artichoke and/or spinach dip that exists on the internet. Extra credit to my sister Jenny for insisting I add sour cream. She’s a pro on matters of spinach meets artichoke – even if she did ask me the recipe for “dip” in the same conversation. What dip? “The dip you eat at parties”…that turned into a conversation about how the classic American dip is soup packet + sour cream + mayonnaise + cheese, etc – this vegan version is as close as I’ll ever get!

Anyway, prior to this, the only other time I can recall eating artichoke dip was at Georgetown Liquor Company with my friends Vijjy and KJ in Seattle, which rules (just remember to say VEGAN). So does their dip. And my Class of 2000 of NW club.

Onto the super cheesy, somewhat spicy, packed with spinach artichoke dip:

Spicy Spinach Artichoke Dip with Nayonaise


  • 14 ounce jar of marinated artichokes, briefly rinsed
  • 4 ounce can of diced green chilies (I used one from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 cup of Nayonaise* or other vegan mayo
  • 1 cup of vegan parmesan (I used a blend of nutritional yeast and pine nuts)
  • 1-2 cups of fresh baby spinach
  • ½ cup of Tofutti Sour Cream or other vegan sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of miso (I used chickpea)
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Optional: 1-2 cloves of garlic, because I simply can’t recall if I added them. It’s harder to imagine I didn’t.

Garnish: 2 tablespoons of pine nuts and a generous pinch of crushed red pepper flakes, added during the final 5 minutes of baking.


  1. Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease a casserole dish, such as an 8×4.
  2. Add all ingredients except for the spinach into a food processor.  Pulse a few times, until well mixed.
  3. Add a bunch of spinach and puree. Add another and do the same until you’re done.
  4. Spoon into the casserole dish and bake for 20-25 minutes.
  5. Remove from oven and add garnishes, if using. Turn the heat to 425F and bake an additional 5 minutes.
  6. Serve with dipping items, such as baguette slices. Go. Party.



The party slowly begins…hundreds of more dips arrived, seriously. This is just the primary Savoury table.


*Thanks Nasoya!!

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ooo, summer I love your ways: produce, potlucks & a triple vegan bacon cheeseburger

Just kidding, I only like the fruits of your labor. The fruits of eight months of Portland drizzle. Rathermore (that’s right), your glorious fresh fruits and vegetables. Come on, weirdo summer, let’s get through the heat wave and onwards to heirloom tomatoes and spin the color wheel of bell peppers, eggplant and cauliflower!

Here are the fruits of my recent culinary labor:

Mushroom Sherry Pate from The Urban Vegan, take 2.

mushroom pate
This time, I added almonds,roasted shallots, maitake mushrooms in addition to cremini, & added a couple of spices.

Cherry Whiskey Cookies

cherry whiskey cookies
I brought these cookies & the pate to the recent Vegan Convergence 2.19. I spent the first half of the gathering selling ice cream (or orchestrating a Purely Decadent body shot photo shoot with Michele, same thing). These cookies are the Oatmeal Raisin Cookies from Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar, substituting a small amount of the non-dairy milk for Cherry Whiskey.

Cabbage Patch tofu scramble

cabbage scramble
Aptly named, as the cabbage was hand-picked on previous berry picking adventures. This scramble has cabbage, sugar snap peas, carrots, kalamata olives and garlic scapes.

Pesto Tahini tofu, marinating.

fu pre fu

I’ve made this before to top salads and been thrilled, but this batch was a little lackluster  since I was trying to cut down on the ingredients and salt-factor for a potluck. This version had homemade almond pesto, tahini, water, white wine and coconut aminos.

Pesto Tahini Baked Tofu, garnished with fresh basil and cherry tomatoes


Baked Jerked Seitan, marinating.

Jerked Seitan

Both jerk sauce and seitan recipes are from The Urban Vegan. Hot stuff!

Seitan Lite & Greens

american vegan lite seitan & greens

The seitan lite recipe is from another fun cookbook I’ve been enjoying  – American Vegan Kitchen.

Jelly Donut Cupcakes

Jelly Donut Cupcakes
from the holy Veganomicon.  shockingly, my first time making them. I made both the cupcakes and seitan for an initials potluck last week. The JS for my behind the scenes name, and the JD for my really, really behind the scenes name. Identity crisis, commence.

Cashew Miso Mayo

cashew miso mayo

A test recipe for Isa’s upcoming Appetite for Reduction book.

In Conclusion, Part I: fresh, local raspberries are swell.


In Conclusion, Part II: My friend Jeff  with his birthday Triple Vegan Bacon Cheeseburger from the super nice & delicious D.C. Vegetarian cart.

jeff's birthday triple vegan bacon cheeseburger
Jeff told me all he wanted for his birthday was a photo of him, at Tube, eating this custom birthday burger, displayed on the internet.

Happy Birthday, Jeff! Somehow, he made it through.

berry picking, subsequently followed by strawberry chocolate swirl cream pie

Blueberry Fields Forever, Sauvie Island


I had my first taste of berry picking fulfillment this past weekend with a few friends.  As usual, it was a berry stained dress of a blast. Getting to farms and carrying home pounds of berries is problematic without a car (or ambition to drive), so I am thrilled when it happens. Carpe diem! Carpe bacca!

There are more sensible places to bike or bus to for free blackberries, though they’re not in season yet. We were at Sauvie Island for the varieties of strawberries, including the last of the precious Hoods, blueberries, and a few raspberries.

The first farm we went to, Bella Organics, had some sweet little Hoods left, but their larger Seascapes weren’t at all flavorful. The second farm we hit, Sauvie Island Farms, offered more bounty and entertainment:  we got to ride through the fields on a tractor, pick berries, and pick our own cabbages! I was very content being lost in thought in their blueberry trees for some time.

The next day, I made a strawberry and chocolate swirl cream pie to celebrate the national holiday, friends, berries, and pie.


Strawberry and Chocolate Swirl Cream Pie:

Both layers were sweetened minimally with dark agave and thickened with soft tofu, cornstarch and soaked cashews. The chocolate layer was also made with 70% dark chocolate and some strawberries and just a few blueberries, to deepen the flavor. A strawberry layer was poured down first, and then the mass of chocolate filling, and more strawberry swirled in.  It was baked for 35 minutes at 350F and firmed in the fridge.

Slices were celebrated with Tom Collinses, Katy Perry, Nintendo and Pabst.

Special thanks to the Vita-Mix for pureeing magic, as usual. I made a point to make this up as I went along, so no recipe. It had a teeny amount of that ‘tofu pie’ thing going on, but not enough to piss me off. The pretty swirl distracted me. Next time I make it I’ll add a bit more agave and berries, and who the hell knows, maybe take it cheesecake style.


I saw little kids elsewhere, but no sign of baby eyes here.


Highlight of the week.


Time to pick the berries.


Bella’s check out.

farm check out

Blackberries weren’t what anyone would call ‘ready’ yet, which is extra sad, because I think they’re my favorite berry of the past 20 months. See you guys in a few weeks!


Bluebs at Sauvie Farms


Lastly, my new friend, the biggest carrot I’ve ever seen. From Sun Gold Farms at the Portland Farmers Market, purchased earlier that morning:

giant carrot

Potentially hilarious meal presentation to hopefully follow.

hey single vegans in Portland….

Thought I’d pass this along!

artwork by @gawkylu!

Speaking of thematic fun, I’m helping plan this year’s third annual Vegan Prom as part of Try Vegan Week – so expect more news soon! Sorry if this is one of those ‘I wish I lived in Portland’ things. Maybe you should. Maybe you live in Portland and noticed all the pretty vegans at last weekend’s amazing Vegan Convergence, hmmm?

p.s. help decide which future theme Vegan Prom will have on this poll!

Petunia’s Pastries, be still my heart-shaped vegan heart

Mini Marionberry Pies $5.95/each

Last year, I was introduced to Petunia’s Pastries during their premiere Last Thursday on NE Alberta via my friend Michelle Crocodile. I sampled one of their very few vegan offerings at the time, a beautiful Chocolate Hazelnut cupcake. This was before I was aware of my stupid new hazelnut allergy, and I can still look back fondly about that rich & dreamy dessert.

This year, Petunia’s temporarily opened the season at the glorious PSU Market and now most of their case is usually vegan – and gluten-free! They’ve moved to the Sunday King Market and will be starting at the brand new Pioneer Square Market on Mondays next month. I took my first visit to the King’s Market in NE to revisit Petunia’s this past weekend. To my awe-filled delight, everything in the case just happened to be entirely vegan! It was a rainy day, and sweetness overcame gloom.

I picked up the cutest Marionberry pie I have ever seen in my life (and I’ve been looking at a lot of pies lately at The Piehole). Juicy, luscious berry filling with an even sweeter heart-shaped adornment. So juicy you almost make up a song in your head about it.

My friend Lucas documented:

Petunia’s also does custom orders and was recently raved about by former Portland Trailblazer and famous Yelper, Channing Frye, on his blog.The next time you’re at the market for some kale, stop by Petunia’s for a pretty decadent treat! They may a new kid on the block, but they’re certainly a growing, welcome addition to the Portland Vegan-Friendly Bakery Scene, and a new highlight at the farmers markets.

The Vegan Convergence is Upon Us

My friend Mike, of the vegan pig cake achievement and so much more, is gloriously and mischeviously trying to unite Portland vegans on Sunday, May 23rd.  If you’re in the Portland area, stop by!

Here are the details from the facebook event (hint: RSVP there for updates):

Hey Portland Vegan!

Ever wonder if there are other super cool vegans and vegan potlucks in PDX that you don’t know about? Even if you adore your current vegan friends, ever wonder if you’re missing out on The Others? Or maybe you’re crying to yourself over your BBQ Platter at B&B or wiping sadness away with orange fingers from the fake Cheetos that you got at Food Fight! since you don’t know any other PDX vegans. In any event, its time for all that to change.

Portland has so many little vegan sub-cultures (quadrant-specific vegans, PPK vegans, Meetup vegans, NW Veg’ers, suburb vegans, space patrol vegans, blogging vegans, tattoo vegans, biking vegans, foodshops/food cart vegans, straightedge vegans). Its hard to keep up, let alone branch out and meet new peeps. But that’s all over now. Like Ronald Reagan told Mikhail Gorbachev back in ‘87, its time to “tear down this wall.”


Show up, eat some food, talk to some folks. It’s simple. You might even meet your new vegan best friend! Worst case scenario, you leave with a full belly of vegan goodies. No time for drama. No time for cliques. Just bring a “Favorite” (is that the theme?) vegan dish (along with cutlery, plates, tongs etc.) and get ready for the best afternoon of your life. Like staring into the sun, this could be epic.

(Vegan-friendly friends invited, too!)


I’ll be stopping by after a project in the morning, though I don’t know how attentive I’ll be with the life-changing series finale of LOST that evening.  I foresee myself getting nervous when I’m not in line at the Bagdad by 5pm!

P.S. Who are the foodshop vegans? The ones that go to cute restaurants? I thought I had all my groups down!

Photo Essay #703: BloLo Brunch & Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

One of my favorite, least-cohesive type of updates.

Over the course of this past slammin’ weekend, I saw the Mayor at a brew pub, dined with friends at Taqueria Los Gorditos: The Restaurant, tried out a new karaoke spot, baked biscotti, finished The Comeback (delightful!), sipped a couple local microbrews on the engaging, Pretzel Necklace™ NW Portland Brewpub Crawl, baked more biscotti, baked even more biscotti, brunched at the new Blossoming Lotus,  sold cookies at Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti, and had a super fantastic meeting with my friend Janessa for a secret big project we’ll be announcing later in the month. !!! I also found a bit of time to feed my cats and do one mere load of laundry, score!

Brunch at BloLo: Florentine Scramble Plate with Maple Seitan Sausage.

Brunch at BloLo

Brunch at BloLo: Sweet Pancake

Brunch at BloLo

Brunch at BloLo: Grits and Greens

Brunch at BloLo

Over all, one of the best and classiest vegan brunch experiences I’ve ever had.  Hands down the best in Portland so far.

The excitement never ends about Taqueria Los Gorditos.  It’s in my hood!

Fajita Soy Curl Burrito at Taqueria Los Gorditos

Taqueria Los Gorditos con amigos

Would you believe this is my first actual burrito from Gorditos? You should believe it, because it’s true. I hear they make their own soyrizo now.  I’m on a Soy Curl kick, myself.

Weekend Baking.

Biscotti: Savoury Italian with Sun-dried Tomato, Rosemary and Basil. Sprinkled with Coarse Sea Salt & Black Pepper.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Biscotti: Savoury Italian and Blueberry, Lemon & Basil


Blueberry, Lemon & Basil Biscotti


Rummy, Spiced Chocolate Chunk Biscotti


I have social anxiety over making pretty things for bake sales, so I went with something I knew, and that was meant to be over-baked!

Onto the Bake Sale!

Insane amount of donations, insane amount of love, insane amount of purchases!  Isa’s idea was beautiful – last time I checked, the grand total for these nationwide, DIY vegan bake sales was over 32k! Portland topped 3k, alone!

For most of the day, there were 4 tables: $2, $3, $4, and COOKIE.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Some pretty scones and coconut cupcakes made their way to the cookie table.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Adorable Blackberry-Apple pie pops

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Behind the scenes, what at one point was the drop-off table

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti


Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Love – Leigh and Ann’s Spicy Haitan Creole Sauce. So good!

I had some over tempeh last night! Talk of this is all the rage on facebook.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Eek! Woof!

Love. Cupcakes.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti


Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti


Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Butterscotch Bundt !!

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Convenient Cookies!

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

A brief moment the cookie table wasn’t jam-packed.

Vegan Bake Sale for Haiti

Vegans rule.

The VeganShizzle & Jess present: Our Favorite Vegan Friendly Bars!

Karla, the Veganshizzle, and Jess join forces to present their favorite vegan-friendly bars in Portland, OR.

In Discussion: Tube, Bye & Bye, Basement Pub, Dots, Roadside Attraction, Langano Lounge, Hungry Tiger Too and more.

The Bye & Bye cocktail
The Bye & Bye

Karla’s Five Favorite Bars for a Vegan Drinker:

1. Bye & Bye: Hands down, favorite bar in town! (Possibly in the world?) I spent my birthday here this year. They’re very accommodating with plates and forks for cake eating. I do believe we forgot to tip them nicely for that, but I don’t think they’ve held it against us. We tip them nicely anyways…..Anyways! They’re an all vegan bar, which you wouldn’t know unless you asked. It’s not advertised as such, though it’s a bit noticeable when you peruse their food menu, which is full of good stuff, like my favorite, the BBQ Brussel Bowl. Brown rice, roasted Brussel sprouts, nooched up tofu with a delicious BBQ sauce. Normally the sauce just has a slight kick to it, but there’s been a couple times where my mouth was a bit on fire. Other food options include Eastern Bowl (broccoli, tofu, brown rice with a peanut sauce), Chili Dog, Meatball Sandwich, and Frito Pie. Mainly what I love about Bye & Bye is their delicious signature drinks. There’s a list of them, all for $7, plus a special drink of the day that’s normally $6. They make a lot of their own flavored liquors, like cucumber gin or ginger infused gin. The drink I normally order is the Stockholm, a delightful mix of ginger beer and….some other stuff. I can’t find their menu online and can’t remember what else is in there. It’s got some citrus in there too and anything with ginger ale in it usually has my attention. Especially the good quality ginger ale like they carry there. (which, by the way, you can just order by itself if you’re not imbibing). The ambiance here is lovely. There’s always eye candy for both the girls and the boys, a covered patio in the back, nice sunbasking patio in the front, a good jukebox, nooks if you’re wanting a little tete tete with someone, large tables for the opposite and Hamm’s on tap and Sessions in a bottle for when we’re feeling cheap. Their happy hour is from open until 7pm every day and that means $3 well drinks (I recommend a Greyhound), $1 off entrees, and $6 mason beers. Which reminds me, they serve their signature-signature (called the Bye & Bye, it tastes like Hi-C Fruit Punch mixed with 7-Up) in a mason jar. It’s a freakin’ great idea. Only cons of this bar: Not in the Southeast and it doesn’t serve french fries. Hipstery bar but not with an attitude.

2. Tube: This bar is downtown near Berbati’s and Dante’s, both of which are bars where shows are played. They’ve got nothin’ on Tube though. Their happy hour is until 10pm. 10pm!!! Who does that? That’s just crazy! And awesome! I always liked this when I had a job where I didn’t get off work until 8 or so and was unable to make all those happy hours that go from 4-6 or so. I still like it though. They have a pretty big vegan menu, but the only thing I ever order is their vegan ham and cheese sandwiches. During happy hour (which is until 10pm!!) you can get 2 of the English muffin sandwiches for $5 (or one for $3). I have great nostalgia for hot ham and cheese sandwiches and though these are very different in that the ham isn’t thinly sliced and the bun isn’t a soft white roll, these fill the ham & cheese shaped hole in my belly. They are panini pressed and are delivered to you hot as can be. I normally take the “lid” off so that it can cool off a bit. Inside is “chipotle” vegan mayo, a slice of vegan ham and a small rectangle of vegan cheese. I put chipotle in quotes because the stuff ain’t spicy. At all. For reals. It is a slightly red. I’ve been known to eat 3 of these. Which reminds me, also during the happy hour you can get $2 well drinks or Hamm’s tall boys. Why you would get a tall boy of beer when you can get a delicious cocktail is beyond me, but to each their own, I suppose. Though the drinks are small looking, they pack a punch and I normally stop at 2. I’ve heard people talk shit about the bartenders but I’ve always had a good experience with them. Lots of hipsters pack this place after 8pm, but don’t let that stop you.

3. Bonfire: This used to my favorite bar. I celebrated a couple birthdays here. I used to live down the street at SE 37th and Washington so it was mostly laziness that brought me there. Well, actually what really brought me there was their cheap basket of deliciously “seasoned” french fries. The staff used to consist of douchebags, but now consists of lots of nice boys. (yes, another bar with nary a girl server in sight…and am I complaining? No. I wouldn’t complain if there were girls there, but, yeah, don’t care if there’s not. Is there anyone reading this that has a problem with all guys as staff? This is an honest-to-goodness question, I’d like to know people’s opinions.) They no longer have Boca Burgers, which saddens me, though I had heard that they weren’t vegan anyways. Vegan options: Tofu or TVP tacos, a burrito, and the mushroom & pepper hoagie. There may be one or two other items. Their food does not get me excited and french fries has my vote for best option. Besides the french fries, the main reason I go there is that they have booths. I’m a fool for some booths.

4. Hawthorne Hideaway: There’s not many reasons to like this bar. I like it for their $2 Happy Hour cocktails. You would never expect it, from the looks of the place, but they use fresh squeezed citrus for their drinks! Lime, lemon, grapefruit and (probably, though I’ve never witnessed it) oranges! Their $2 Greyhounds are delicious! There’s a front and back to this bar, with bar itself in the middle. The back part has a couple pool tables, an electronic jukebox (where people end up playing the oddest selection of 90s music, which Jess sings aloud with), 2 coed bathrooms and a bunch of frat boys. The front of the bar has several wooden booths…..and that’s it. One of the pool tables used to be there and I wish they’d put it back. They had switched it out for a closed area for Keno/lottery players, but, thankfully, have removed that monstrosity.

5. Basement Pub/Roadside Attraction: They’re pretty much next to each other, so I’m going to combine them since I can’t decide between the two. These are mere blocks from my abode and therefore I find myself there more often than if I lived in the NE or something. Since the smoking ban, I’ve liked Basement Pub a lot more. It’s a cozy place, with an aquarium in the center and pinball against one wall, a jukebox, a smallish nook that I’ve never really gotten a good look at (it’s on the left side on your way to the bathroom), good beer deals, wooden half-booths. Roadside Attraction is a clean, interesting bar. There’s free pool and jukebox, lots of different types of seating, including an amazing outside front patio with fireplace, swing, picnic tables, a small shed with a heater for you and your 5 friends. Oh, and both are about 5 blocks from the Hawthorne/12 St carts!

Basement Pub beverages

Karla’s Honorable Mentions:

Hungry Tiger Too (this place isn’t very bar-y, more restaurant-y.)

Pros: Wednesday $1 corndogs and PBR Tall Boys all day long

Hopworks Urban Brewery (same as HTT, restaurant-y)

Pros: delicious beer, including Radlers!


Jess’ Five Favorite Vegan Friendly Bars

Narrowing down my favorite vegan-friendly bars in Portland was really easy, because they’re blatantly places I go to on a semi-regular basis.  There are a few honorable mentions, and a few bars that aren’t vegan friendlier than a hummus plate, fries or chips and salsa that I dig, but let’s keep that my little secret!  And by secret, I mean they’re part of my never-ending search for cheap, cozy happy hours.

My requirement for an establishment on this list is the offering of a full bar, draft microbrews and multiple options of vegan appetizers and entrees.  Novelty, happy hour specials and walking distance to my abode in SE is a plus.

1. Hungry Tiger Too. My top 5 is in no particular order, but one of my favorite vegan-friendly places in general is this casual restaurant and bar; so it’s on this list.  I’ll happily take in a hangover brunch plus my once a year vegan Bloody Mary (make sure to specify vegan, they have two homemade mixes), but Thursday night happy hour plus BBQ and Spicy 40 cent tofuffalo wings is my new favorite favorite favorite. Sandwiches, Vegan Caesars (I dig adding tempeh) sweet butternut stuffed fried wontons, $1 vegan corndogs and Pabst Tallboys on Wednesdays, what’s not to find endearing?

p.s. go early on Wednesday nights unless you’re patient, or really that cool.

2. Someday Lounge – Out of my 5, this is the one I frequent the least, but I heart it just the same.  It’s incredibly appealing to get items available at Backspace Lounge for a tad less during happy hour, and the all vegetarian menu expands after that. Tempeh Reuben? Check. Vegan sausage? Check. Large hummus plate? Duh.  It has a cool vibe, and the upstairs seating is secluded and dare I say, intimate.  Avoid the leather couches if it grosses you out (it does).  The past few times I’ve gone there’s no cocktail list, but they pour strong and have microbrews galore. It’s a place if you actually want dinner, as opposed to a Professor Nanotear.

Sandwich and GF pasta salad from the Someday Lounge

3. This brings us to Tube.   The only thing I haven’t previously said about my precious early happy hour stop is (happy hour daily 5pm-10pm, but I prefer it before 8 to avoid crowds) that they recently switched to cheddar Daiya in their Professor Nanotear muffins.  It works in the small and large vegan ham & cheeze sammies, okay? Okay.  I’m not as hot on the mildly seasoned tofu scramble taco, but its well worth the $3 as bar food.  I’ll repeat myself for a 3 billionth time – the Professor Nanotears are pathetically awesome (2 for $5 or $3 each, just get 2!) and $2 well greyhounds rule. Consider the full vegan ham sandwich and goddess side salad or vegan meatball options if you have a bigger appetite.

p.s. Ham Tube Donut Sandwich.

4. Next on my list is a restaurant, but because they haven’t updated their options in years, I think of them as a bar. I hope that makes sense.  They’re still a staple in my life and a big reason I moved to the Clinton neighborhood, but it would be cool to see an upgrade from Vegan Platters and Falafel.  Don’t take offense Dots, I love you, your spicy tofu dipping sauce, and your velvet walls I can’t help but touch. And can you believe you can actually smell food cooking in there, post-smoking ban?!?

Spicy tofu sauce and fries from Dots

5. Last up is the obvious star, The Bye & Bye. It’s a fantastic place to go whether you’re drinking the peachy signature drink, or the non-boozy Floor Punch. Love the back patio, bamboo and heat lamps. And the bar food? Okay, the best in Portland. I crave their saucy BBQ tofu, brussel sprouts and black eyed peas on a regular basis (and the North Williams cocktail).  Bonus – kid friendly during the day! ENTIRELY VEGAN!

Jess’ Honorable Mentions:

Aalto Lounge – stylin’ hipster spot on Belmont, with a kickass, vegan meatball sub. Housemade balls and sauce.

UPDATE: Liz has brought to my attention that the meatballz are no more. boo.

Langano Lounge – Scary great lentils. Probably just scary. Either way, dive appreciation. Mere two blocks from Cartopia!

Nightlight Lounge – who knew you get could a great tofu stir fry at a bar?

Basement Pub – Cider on tab & bland hummus & spiced black beans, hits some spot or another!

Professor Nanotear

Benjamin Linus Throws a Dinner Party


Over the past year, I’ve picked up a new hobby – planning themed parties.

Technically, event panning falls in my area of collegiate expertise, ba da bum, which makes putting it to use delightful and hysterical.  Party planning is a project full of novelty, vegan menu planning, refreshments, and socializing – win!

I threw my first themed party last January.  No surprise that it was a premier party for the start of Season 5 of LOST.  I’ve been saying since Season 2, if I’m still entranced with the series as a whole after it ends, I will be getting the numbers tattooed!

This past weekend, I threw a party for the return of my much-missed friend Susie from college out of state.  She’s a serious Lostie, and fellow Ben fan, so the theme was Benjamin Linus Throws a Dinner Party. It was a day of marathon-LOST watching and Dharma rations that led into a mid-sized party (for my small apartment, at least!) of old and news fans alike, plus some female arm wrestling on my kitchen floor, Mikhail’s eyepatch, an empty jar, and leis.  The theme was obviously LOST, with a welcome to the Island/Tropical vibe.

Benjamin Linus Throws a Dinner Party, the pictures!

The TV Station and Bar.

Food Drop. Joanna <3 Hurley Ranch Dip = The Shit.

I’ve posted the menu below this. My favorites were the Ranch Dip and Susi – I mean, Sayid’s Shawarama Seitan.  Zomg, good. I hope they both type up the recipes! Cough cough.

The menu! I like displaying a menu because A) It makes me organized B) It’s adorable and C) It’s self-explanatory and can highlight special dietary needs.  Everything made it to the table, plus all the delicious additions friends brought – with the exception of the boar sausages I forgot hanging in the oven until past midnight.  No room for them anyway!

The Smoke Monster decided on Chocolate Chunk Mint Candy Cookies, since Susie likes the mint lentils so!

Hurley’s Garlic Mayo Gluten Free Pasta Salad in the back. Joanna and Susie walked me through my first pasta salad! It’s a Vegenaise-based dressing pureed with sautéed shallots and plenty of garlic, tossed with rice spirals, sun-dried tomatoes, black olives, spinach and orange bell pepper.

Crockpot of Seitan Shawarma, crackers and some of Locke’s favorite trail snacks, including wasabi peas, banana chips and hot mango rosemary spiced almonds.  Desmond’s fondue somehow found room on the table eventually!

Side view of the bar, featuring Juliet’s Lonely Island Rum Punch and loads more, including Dharma vodka, MacCutcheon Whiskey and Dharma Lemon Lime soda.  The OJ is for Screwdrivers, Jack style. Sadly, I forgot to get a shot of my fridge full of Dharma Stout! I’ll make a point to add it, it’s that cool.

Some of my favorite Hostiles! In the Book Club Station. Yes, there was Carrie and a few others.

Even the cd player was in on the act! You. All. Everybody.

Make Your Own Kind of Music was played a few times, of course.

Susie, newly crowned Leader of the Others:

And just because it’s so awesome, here’s the cake Katie Jane made last year (and her photo):

Poorly labeled Dharma Booze:

The labels are from the Max Pictures’ website.  Thank you!

Thanks for observing our tv-geek-out! <3  jess sconed-hanso-linus.