Our bitterly cold college tour and vegan travel adventure continued as we descended on Boone, North Carolina. Surrounded by beautiful mountains with outdoor sports enthusiasts, we knew there would be no problem finding a vegan restaurant in Boone. As luck would have it, we found two, including a regional chain of uber-healthy supermarkets, EarthFare. [tweetthis]regional chain of uber-healthy supermarkets, EarthFare[/tweetthis] It felt more California than North Carolina, but only my daughter and I can spend an entire evening browsing in a boutique grocery store as if it were Nordstrom.
Our vegan travel adventure then led us to Coyote Kitchen, obviously a popular healthy dining spot for college students. I had the Mesa Verde bowl with beans, coconut rice, sautéed spinach, corn, mushrooms, caramelized onions, fried sweet potatoes, grilled zucchini, and a sweet red vegan mayo. My daughter suggested I top it with the restaurant’s spicy cranberry relish – I know, it sounds like an odd combination of flavors but it was incredible! It was so filling, I ended up taking half of it home to eat for breakfast the next morning (but I’ll admit, I chowed on it late night).
My daughter, a tempeh lover, opted for the Sedona Bowl with blackened tempeh, coconut rice, black beans, sautéed spinach, fried sweet potatoes, corn, caramelized onions, roasted red peppers, sweet red vegan mayo and scallions.
The next day, we were excited to seek out another vegan restaurant in Boone that had been recommended by a few different people, the Hob Nob Farm Cafe. As the name suggests, the restaurant has its own farm from which it sources most ingredients.
My daughter couldn’t decide between the Red Beans and Rice or Garam Masala Yellow Curry but the waiter said the curry was his favorite. As I pondered between the curry and going “off-vegan” and opted for a special, I soon realized I should have gone with the waiter’s recommendation. The curry had jasmine rice in spicy yellow curry with roasted sweet potatoes, haricot vert, red peppers, kale and carrots, garnished with mango and cashew. Yes, a totally vegan and gluten-free meal! I cheated and had a fabulous and unique Cuban sandwich with pulled pork and Ghost Pepper Mayo (I can not resist anything spicy). However, the curry was truly one of the best I’ve had.
So I’m 50% in terms of my vegan adventure in terms of being able to stick with the plan. But I think I redeemed myself on our next outing to the Present Moment Cafe in St. Augustine. Stay tuned…