Monday, October 3, 2016

Opening Weekend for Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge 2016

The Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge started Saturday and will run through the end of the month.  With 25 restaurants participating this year, I made sure to visit two of  them over the weekend.

My husband Phil and I went to brunch at the Porch Restaurant and Bar Saturday morning. As local vegans may know, the Porch changes its menu daily and always offers vegan options. In addition to their regular menu, they also had a separate Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu available.

The Mac & "Cheese" was calling my name, but not as loudly as the Vegan Waffle on the Porch's regular menu, especially since I had come in with the expectation of eating brunch.  So here's what I ordered:

I hope to get back to the Porch while they're still offering the Mac & "Cheese," though, and I'll also order one of my all-time favorite vegan appetizers -- the Cajun Fried Beets.

Saturday night, Phil and I had dinner at Thai Basil, where I wanted to try everything on the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu, but had to face the realization that I wasn't going to be able to eat all that.

I always order aloo gobi in Indian restaurants, so I knew I was going to have to try the Aloo Gobi Croquettes.  It was an amazing dish -- cauliflower and potatoes in a spicy masala sauce.  The coconut milk added a touch of sweetness and a touch of Thai to this traditionally Indian food combination.

Next, I had the Vegan Hung-Le Curry, a delicious mix of tofu, zucchini, pumpkin, and peppers in curry sauce, topped with avocado slices and served with brown rice.

I was pretty stuffed after that, but Suleka Lindley, the restaurant's owner, brought Phil and me a dish of her vegan dessert to try.  This lovely combination of tapioca, taro root, mango, pomegranate seeds, and sweet black rice capped off the dinner perfectly.

Not all of the participating restaurants have finalized their challenge menus yet, but you can check the Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge website to see what's currently available. There's also a passport you can use to check off the restaurants you visit.  I'll continue to post updates on my Sacramento Vegan Facebook and Instagram pages to let you know which restaurants I've tried. 

Have fun out there! October is a great month to be vegan in Sacramento!


sarahleone said...

I'm super excited to visit both of these restaurants this month. I haven't been to either and I appreciate your suggestions!

Pam said...

I really like both restaurants, and I hope you do too!