Monday, November 20, 2017

33rd Street Bistro

Sorry to have dropped off the face of the earth for the past month or so. I've been having some issues with vertigo that made a low-sodium diet necessary and I'm still trying to adjust to that. In addition, I was traveling for a couple of weeks. At any rate, I'll do my best to get back to a weekly blog schedule, vertigo permitting.

This week, I visited a restaurant that I stopped going to when I went vegan more than fifteen years ago -- 33rd Street Bistro in East Sacramento. I used to love having lunch there, but after I went vegan, I discovered they had nothing on their menu that I could eat. That changed recently when they began offering the Impossible Burger, one of the new generation of veggie burgers that's supposed to  look and taste like the real thing.

My friends Cathy and Genevieve went with me to 33rd Street Bistro a few days ago so I could check it out. I'm a huge fan of the Beyond Burger that's available at Broderick Roadhouse these days, and I couldn't imagine that the Impossible Burger would be able to compare with that. I was wrong. I loved the Impossible Burger, at least as much as the Beyond Burger. For starters, it doesn't have that pink center that kind of creeps me out when I eat a Beyond Burger. And it looks and tastes exactly like the burgers I remember from my pre-vegan days. Really, the only complaint I had about this burger was that 33rd Street Bistro hasn't taken the extra step yet to provide a vegan cheese option. If they ever do that, I'll be heading back over there for lunch regularly again, just like in the old days.

33rd Street Bistro is located at 3301 Folsom Boulevard, and their phone number is 916-455-2233. Their website address is, and their Facebook page can be found at The restaurant is open Sunday through Wednesday from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Thursday through Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

SVCC Day Seventeen -- Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy

I've missed a few days of Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge meals, but today my friend Jane and I went to lunch at Cielito Lindo Mexican Gastronomy in East Sacramento. They haven't printed up a special challenge menu, but they are offering a few vegan specials this month.

I ordered the penca de nopal, a cactus pad stuffed with pumpkin, chayote, and green squash, served in a tomato sauce with broccolini, a couple of tofu triangles, and white rice (not shown). It was a very tasty and creative dish.

Other vegan specials this month include a trio of tostadas topped with refried black beans, mushrooms, and red onion; a tomato and bell pepper soup; and a vegetable stack. If the first person you ask doesn't know about the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu, be persistent and ask someone else. The hostess didn't seem to know what I was talking about, but the server did. Cielito Lindo also has a few vegan options on their regular menu.

Friday, October 13, 2017

SVCC Day Thirteen -- Metro Kitchen + Drinkery

I was out running errands today, and stopped in for a late Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge lunch at Metro Kitchen + Drinkery. They are offering two different vegan options for the challenge: Saffron Spanish Stew and Coconut Ginger Soup.

It was tough to decide between the two, but I finally opted for the hearty Saffron Spanish Stew, made with local heirloom beans, Yukon gold potatoes, fennel, roasted garlic, Spanish saffron, carrots, onions, celery, tomatoes, and I don't know what all. It was topped with a dollop of vegan aioli and served with a slice of toasted Pugliese bread.

I asked if they had any house-made vegan desserts, and the cashier pointed out their mousse in a canning jar. There were two kinds: one was just chocolate and the other was chocolate with peanut butter. I had the plain chocolate, which was very rich and creamy.

Metro Kitchen + Drinkery is located in the WAL Public Market on R Street.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

SVCC Day Twelve -- Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Co.

I had such a great Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge dinner tonight! My husband Phil and I went to Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Co., where they've created an entire vegan menu.

I knew going in what I was going to order, and first on the list was the fried cauliflower appetizer, since cauliflower is probably one of my top three favorite vegetables. The cauliflower was served on romesco sauce, with a squeeze of lemon juice and and a little parsley. I ate every bite!

For my main course, I ordered the vegan mac and cheese, orecchiette pasta with a sauce made from Miyoko's cheese and topped with bread crumbs. Fabulous!

If neither of those dishes are what you are looking for, the following menu lists several other vegan options that are available at Hook & Ladder. You should definitely check it out!

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

SVCC Day Eleven -- VEG

I met my friend Deborah for lunch today at VEG, always one of my favorite places for a vegan meal. I asked about their Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu, but the server said it wasn't available yet, and didn't say when it would be available.

Still, with VEG's almost completely vegan menu, there are always options. Deborah ordered the savory summer crepe, which is what I get almost every time I'm there. The crepe is made with chickpea flour, coconut milk, and turmeric, and it's filled with kale, shiitake mushrooms, carrots, and bean sprouts. It's so good!

I decided to try something new for a change, so I ordered the curry bowl. The vegetables in the bowl change daily, but today they were potatoes, carrots, kale, summer squash, corn, and sweet potatoes in a cashew korma sauce. Rice and lentils were served along with the curry. I really enjoyed it.

Looking forward to checking out another Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge restaurant tomorrow!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

SVCC Day Ten -- The Rind

On this tenth day of the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge, I met my friend Kathy for lunch at The Rind. Kathy writes a blog called Sacramento Revealed, sharing information about events, restaurants, and other interesting aspects of Sacramento life. She's not a vegan, but was happy to see what wonderful vegan options are being offered in local restaurants this month.

The Rind has created a special vegan sandwich for the challenge, the Veggie, so I decided to give that a try. It consisted of their house-made cashew cheese, bell peppers, cucumbers, and greens, grilled between two slices of sourdough. I loved the flavor of the cashew cheese -- it really made the sandwich.

Kathy ordered the vegan Masquerader Mac, macaroni baked in a "creamy puree of sun-dried tomatoes, cashews, and sunflower seeds with our herbed tomato sauce, herbed bread crumbs and basil." The Masquerader Mac is a regular menu item at the Rind

We're about a third of the way through the month, and I've visited nine of the participating restaurants so far. How many have you tried?

Monday, October 9, 2017

SVCC Day Nine -- Capitol Garage

I love pancakes, but it seems like the only time I ever eat them is when all the vegan pancakes hit the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menus every October. This morning, I stopped in at Capitol Garage for breakfast, knowing exactly what I was going to order when I got there. These three enormous pancakes, sprinkled with powdered sugar and served with maple syrup and vegan butter, got my day off to a good start.

Capitol Garage are offering lots of other vegan dishes all throughout the day. Check out their Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu:

This is why I look forward to October every year!