Vegan Eating in Philadelphia
As you are well aware, I spent a week in Nebraska on the Winnebago Indian Reservation doing service through my church’s youth group as a chaperone.
What you may not be aware of, is that I was home for all of 13 hours before leaving again.
was told agreed to go to Philadelphia for a three day training session for a college preparatory program at my school. This program, AVID, holds a series of training sessions every year, and it was my turn, as I will be part of that program next year.
We were to be offered a “Grab-and-Go” breakfast every morning, and the hotel/conference center was kind enough to inform the conference of the breakfast options:
Day 1: Breakfast burrito, yogurt, fruit, coffee, fruit juice
Day 2: Muffins, yogurt, fruit, coffee, fruit juice
Day 3: More muffins, yogurt, coffee, and fruit juice. (Seeing a trend?)
Needless to say, I as pretty happy that I still had cinnamon-raisin-nut bread and Almond Breeze Tetrapacks left over from Nebraska.
Who would have thought that I would be able to eat better on a church trip to Nebraska than in a major city on the East Coast! Shame on you, Philly Mariott.
Lunch was a better meal, however, as we were right across the street from the Reading Terminal Market. The Market is huge, so there were a number of options available to me. I opened with Thai food, and closed with a huge salad. In between, I headed down to a nearby Chipotle, as I know every Chipotle has vegan options.
For dinner, we went out each night, and while the Indian and sushi restaurants that the rest of my crew chose were fine, I really wanted to focus on where I went the one night I was on my own.
Unsure where to go, and in no way familiar with the downtown area of Philadelphia, I went where oh so many intrepid vegan explorers have gone when faced with a new area.
That’s right, I went to the always fine, grinning bovine, making dinner a snap, I used the Happy Cow app!
Thankfully, right nearby there was a felafel restaurant, Maoz.
With a trendy vibe, and a fast food set up, I knew full well that this place wasn’t set up for a flashy night out, which was perfect. I had a meeting in 45 minutes, and no desire to have a “sit down” dinner.
The guy who took my order was young, but knew enough to point out that all of the toppings for the felafel were vegan except for two or three, and he was patient enough to let me stare before ordering. (Mind you, the menu pretty much includes the meal deal, the jr. meal deal, the salad meal deal, and then the things that make up those three meals: felafel, jr, felafel, salad, and french fries, so we’re not talking about brain surgery.)
This was my first felafel ever, so I got the full meal, and then covered it in, well, stuff. They had a whole bar of toppings, and I just kind of piled things on. I’ve never had felafel before, but this was really good. The felafel balls were crispy on the outside, and soft in the inside, they were well seasoned, although maybe a tad more salty, but in general the food was really good. The fries were. . . fries. Nothing special, but the addition of the toppings that made their way onto the fries certainly helped.
I also, because I was in desperate need of something healthy, ordered one of their fresh-made juices. I got the “kale, celery, apple, cucumber” juice, which, I think was mostly cucumber and apple, but it tasted pretty good and it was certainly better than whatever soda they had back there too, so. . .
Thankfully, by the time I got home, I had finally reestablished my belly as a place for real food and not the craziness that I’ve been forced to eat lately. . .
All of that, though, is a review of fast food, so what’s your favorite vegan fast food, and where do you find it?