I attended the Jacksonville VegFest in April of this year which is where I found out about the Reggae Shack and where I met Danielle. The Reggae Shack’s booth at Veg Fest always had a long line. I was busy doing other things and could not spend the time waiting in line to sample their food. I made the decision to visit them on one of my dive trips to Blue Grotto or Rainbow River. I had the opportunity this past weekend to stop there on the way back from Rainbow River. (more…)
After an intense workout, who doesn’t crave a thick and juicy burger? A veggie burger, that is! That’s exactly what happened to us the other night when my running partner and I had finished a 7-mile “hill training” run in the pouring down rain along the very steep and long causeway bridge. I could think of no other place than the Green Bar & Kitchen, an organic plant-based, non-GMO, mostly gluten-free eatery to satisfy our hunger in a healthy yet hearty way! gb&K is located at 1075 SE 17th St., in very popular and touristy east Ft. Lauderdale.
By Stacy Perry
Tampa Bay’s Fourth Annual VegFest, 2013, was held in Tampa’s Cotanchobee Fort Brooke Park. It was organized by Florida Voices for Animals, a non-profit formed to “raise awareness about animal cruelty issues” and to give the public ways to help. This was my first year to attend and it was pleasantly busy, conveniently happening on the same day as a nearby breast cancer walk was finishing. Hungry participants of the walk floated over to check out what was happening in the park — ahhhh, serendipity. Well-behaved dogs on leashes were invited to the event too.
There were several food booths on one end of the venue, selling Vietnamese, Indian, Ethiopian, Mexican, specialty popsicles, frozen banana ‘ice cream’, and baked goods. If there was something non-vegan at this festival, I didn’t see it.
by Stacy Perry
A brick oven pizza place with a completely separate vegan menu? Yes… and it includes appetizers, entrees, pizza and pasta. North of Sarasota, Vertoris is a quick jog off I-75. Take exit 217, then west on 53rd Ave, south on 14th St. West and it’s in the third block.
Vertori’s offers your standard dough (this is the one we tried — delicious) as well as 9-grain and gluten-free options prepared thin or hand-tossed. The 9-grain option will add $1-$3 to your pizza, depending on the size you order, and will be welcomed by those seeking a whole foods option. Vetoris goes all out to accommodate the dietary needs of their customers as described in this clip taken directly from their website.
Vertori’s offers Vegan and Allergen-free Italian Pizza Cheese
Vertori’s Pizza House has begun offering a Vegan Italian Cheese Blend to complement their various pizza sauces and crusts. The Italian cheese blend is free of cholesterol, trans fats, animal products, hormones, antibiotics and free of common allergens including soy, casein, lactose, gluten, egg and nuts. It has 33% less fat than dairy-based cheese and has no artifical ingredients. Choose this blend over Vertori’s 100% whole wheat, spring wheat, multi-grain, gluten-free or gluten-free/dairy-free pizza crust for a nutritious and delicious meal. (more…)
By Stacy Perry
Located about 3 miles off I-75 on Clark Road, Smell the Bread walks the talk! This cozy place is committed to environmental and ethical stewardship, from their GMO-free pledge to their locally-sourced coffee roaster; and yes, the coffee is fair-trade and organic. They offer several vegan sandwiches (served on bread made in-house), a daily vegan feature Monday through Friday, and vegan salads with house-made dressings. If you’re traveling with a meat eater, Smell the Bread also offers a handful of items in which certified humane-raised chicken is the focus; this can also be added to any salad for an additional cost.
When I was there last, I ordered the Harvest Roast Panini and my dining companion ordered the vegan feature of the day, the Meatball Sandwich with homemade ricotta and pesto. Their six regular plant-based sandwiches range from $7.95 to $8.95, their daily vegan specials are $8.50.