Thursday, October 7, 2010

Maui baby! part 3

ok, this post is all due to Andrea. She got me to check out River's blog (which is even more cool than normal because this month is Halloweegan) and now here I am posting something. Andrea is tricky :).

Before I blab about Maui (a trip I took way back in the spring), I need to give a shout out to the bake sale I'm organizing.

Vegan Bake Sale
October 23rd & 24th
Sidecar in Seattle

I can attest from doing this bake sale 5 times before this that there is something for everybody. delicious! Here's how I recommend planning your trip to the bake sale: have a great breakfast / lunch at Wayward, then head across the street to the bake sale. Should I also mention that Sidecar has a bunch of new stuff?

If you'd like to bake, please email seattlebakesale [at] hotmail [dot isn't is annoying that spammers force me to chop up an email addy?] com

Now onto Maui... and believe me I could use me some Maui today. It's gloomy here.

For me these are the bfasts of fantasy - perfect fruit including maui mangoes, toasted bagels and most imporant, we ate them out on the balcony overlooking the water.

bfast view. the inlet that you see in this pic doesn't have the clearest water for snorkeling, though not murky water shark death either. The reason to snorkel here is that every day, there are at least 6 GIANT turtles. This tiny inlet is directly south (and adjacent) to Napili bay. Btw, if you go to Maui, check out Napili bay beach. It has a steep slope, so you can lay on the sand and the surf will shoot you up the beach and back down. it's really fun, but be prepared for a bathing suit filled w/ sand. Miso mayo on a bagel, hell yeah! the purple fruit is some strange HI thing that was pretty but didn't taste like much. cleanup duty by a very brazen vixen or dude. not sure which.bonus of banana bread from mana foods that I put in the toaster. it's hard not getting pb on your english muffin when Andy is working the toaster.
This wasn't bfast, just a random fruit snack
Joy's Place
I love going to Joy's place because you can get both raw and cooked food that tastes great after getting slammed around by the waves.

joy roll (fresh roll wrap around nori, sprouts, carrot, avocado, and more)
indo crunch wrap (my fave). I forget what the crunch part is, but it's all good.

hummus wrap

smoothies and a coffeechai drink
raw chocolate pudding & raw macaroons

The Scary Ride To The Airport
On our way home, the main road to the airport was closed due to a brush fire. Typically rental companies forbid their cars being driven on the road that is on the NW tip of the island, but the fire left them w/ no choice but to allow it. There is good reason because it's really narrow and winding. It is different than the road to hana because there road really doesn't fit 2 cars and there aren't many places to pull over. Luckily for us, we only met up w/ 1 car going the other direction.
not only narrow, but if you go off the edge, you're going for a death ride.

keeping some distance from the motorcycle (that passed us on this road) and freaky mini van driver dude that had a need for speed.

Whole Foods
After the "fun" narrow road, we ate lunch and bought food for the plane. They have a great food bar that has lots of vegan options. Even a station that had more than 1 made to order vegan sandwich.

Fresh rolls covered w/ a tasty sauce. you can see my brother's fingers patiently waiting as I take some pics.

Pizza w/ Daiya. I really got to snacking before I remembered to take a pic. Excellent whole wheat crust :)
Phew! That's my Maui trip. Next time I go to Maui, I'm staying in a hotel (vs. a condo) because Maui is vegan friendly enough that you don't need your own kitchen.
If I remember I will update this post w/ the 1 place that sells vegan choc covered macadamia nuts. personally I find them to be gross because the chocolate doesn't have a high enough cacao % for me. I prefer my macs roasted & salted. The store is either the KMart or Walmart in the airport town.

Faline aka Lady Cat hanging out in the cat cage. Please note the well kept grass. ha!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Maui, baby! part 2

Here's a simplistic map so you know where I stayed and where some of the places I went to. This time I'll focus on Hana and Fresh Mint.

I can't imagine a guide or article that talks about Hana not going on and on about the road to Hana. Yeah, it was twisty turny, but not life threatening like they say (I didn't go all around the island on the road. Just to Hana, then turned around). As long as you know how to yield for the 1 lane bridges, you're good. Oh, and don't hold up locals or other people by going too slow w/ your looky loo touristy ways. Again, common sense. If you're in the lead and have more than 5 cars stacked up behind you, then pull over and let them pass. The road is really LONG and if you get carsick, you'll love the twistyness of it all. Plan ahead before you go because there are a ton of places to stop and check things out, but almost all of them unmarked and chances are you won't know that you're missing a hike or whatever. Here are some pics taken from the car. As you can tell, I'm more of a let's get there already types vs. let's take out sweet time and stop a bajillion times.

At Hana, we went to the Hana bay black sand beach. Not really that exciting. blabbity blab meander around for a bit. Then went to the Wai'Anapanapa State Park. The views were incredible. In the pic below, you can see a black sand beach. We went swimming there, but for only about 1/2 hour because the surf was pretty rough.

This is a panoramic view of the park. Off to the right, there are lots of lava rock that you can climb around on and get blasted by ocean spray. To the right of that tree, there is a rock island w/ what looks like rabbit ears on it.

Just outside of Hana (maybe mile 29?) sits Coconut Glen's Big Dumb Coconut Stand. Translation - vegan coconut ice cream that is really awesome. Way better than anything I've ever had before.
My 2 flavors: toffee coffee & spicy something. And the "spoon" is a hunk of coconut husk.

On the way back to Napili, we stopped off in Paia to eat dinner at Fresh Mint, an all vegan place. You gotta eat here if you visit Maui. If you go early enough, you can get in some grocery shopping at Mana Foods down the road.

The pics below are of 2 visits to Fresh Mint for 3 people.

Fresh Rolls Fresh Mint Salad
Spicy Lemongrass Soup - oddly there wasn't any lemon flavor until I squeezed in the lemon juice. Lemongrass Not, but still good. Soy Fish in a Clay Pot. I love this dish. gingerific.
I can't remember what these were called, but they tasted great. basically tofu wrapped in yuba & nori.Banana Fritters floating on a sea of tapioca pudding. dessert, mmm...
Also, no clue what this was :).
Kung Pao in bad lighting. ~~~~~
Here's Chippy doing some detective work. If you think for even a second that your cats don't invade your privacy -- think again. Oh, that's not a delicious chocolate shake, that's some Vega; which Chippy is not interested in.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Maui, baby! part 1

As you probably figured out from the title, I went to Maui. Woohoo! I was there at the end of April/ beginning of May. Once in a while I can still feel some of the aloha relaxation vibe coursing through my veins - despite the current yuck weather in Seattle.

In this post I'm going to talk about the health food stores I went to, tacos and other random stuff. I didn't take a lot of pics because most of my time was at the beach and I don't bring a camera there or a towel. That way I don't lose anything.

This is my 2nd time to Maui and I even love arriving at the airport after a 6 hr flight and waiting for luggage. That's because it's an open air airport and the warmth of Maui and the sight of palm trees is immediately felt as you exit the plane. Do I care that I have to wait for luggage / rental car bs? nope.

Down To Earth
I always stop here right after the airport. DTE is an all vegetarian health food store that has a rocking hot bar (almost all vegan), salad bar, deli, and smoothie bar. Not to mention all of the new products you will find in the grocery section. Most important thing: stock up on mangos so that there is always a ripe one to eat at bfast.

Here is my plate from the hot bar. A month+ later and I only remember that every bite was fantastic. Note that I typically detest hot bars / buffets because the food just sits around all day - so my "fantastic" isn't easily earned.

Mana Foods
49 Baldwin Ave, Paia
If you plan on going to Paia (and you should), coordinate it around one of your grocery shopping trips. I love the vibe to this store, I wish it were in WA. They have lots of vegan stuff here - I'm sure you're even bound to find something new to you. There are even some freshly baked vegan treats like banana bread here - 2 thumbs up.

Farmer's Market Store
3636 Lower Honoapiilani Rd, Lahaina
This store has lots of vegan grocery basics. The hot bar is ok, but not as good as DTE. The smoothies are ok, but nothing super special. They do have a really nice sign for the smoothie bar.

Iao Needle State Park
A beautiful and impressive place to visit, but a quick one. The hike part is really short, but I can imagine that making a trail on this terrain would be really difficult. So make this a quick detour on your way to Paia (assuming you're staying in West or South Maui).

Giant Banyan Tree in Lahaina
Southern end of Front St, Lahaina
This is all 1 big connected tree. It's not easy to get a great pic of the whole thing, so I went w/ a panoramic shot. click on it and you should get a better view.

Maui Tacos
Many many locations in maui
taco taco buritto taco taco
I love this place and ate here more times than I can count. They have a good salsa bar - my fave was the hot pineapple salsa. Basically they have vegan tacos, burritos and enchiladas where you can vary the fillings. pinto, black bean, potato, rice, lettuce - you get the idea. They also had a chimichanga on the menu, but I didn't even dare to ask if I could get it veganized.

potato tacos & pineapple salsa

Las Pinatas
395 Dairy Rd Ste J, Kahului
Only 1 location, but worth it. I'm not sure if their tacos are vegan or not, but they have a vegan kitchen sink burrito that is AWESOME. The salsa bar is ok, but not as good as maui tacos.

to be continued... in about a month or so given my current rate of blogging.


Oh, I suppose I should give you a glimpse of The Judge making sure the canola bottle is clean enough for the recycling bin.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Seattle rocks it w/ The Chocolate Shoebox

I'm really tired because I've been busy buSy biz-ee. Next week I should have a bit of time to check out all of your awesome blogs that I've been missing. My blog-o-rythm is now once every 2 weeks for reading/posting. I guess it's better than once every 3 months. I hope you can bear w/ me.


Seattle has a new vegan shoe & chocolate store that opened today, The Chocolate Shoebox. I helped Sadaf, the owner, setup yesterday. I left before the shoes were put on display, so there were plenty of surprises for me today. I will let the pictures do the talking. I'm using my new phones camera (HTC HD2). At times the pics are sort of fuzzy, but it's much easier than carrying around something bigger.

Day before, still setting up. Sadaf is having some chocolate in the form of a mighty-o.

Saturday, and the grand opening is in full swing. ooh, pretty pink shoe, I love you!

Cool sneakers & a Love bag. The more I look at this bag, the more I want it. I would love a love knapsack.

More awesome handbags.

Sadaf helping a customer

David working the stock room

Sitara working the register. Brandon is in the background filling sample cups.

This chocolate says it all

The belly dancers of Skin Deep arrive. Their subtle moves were too much for my cell phone camera, so the pics are a tad blurry. I recently went to their murder mystery show on the orient express (a Seattle restaurant) ~ very cool! A must see.

My stash. sexy pink sandals for special occasions & some chocolate. 2 more pairs of shoes for me & some green/black ones for Andy.


More cell phone pics. Kobie is hanging in the car on errand day. He is currently banned from errands because he chewed apart the back seat belts AGAIN. Hey, it's in his nature. I'd much prefer that he chew on the canvas shopping bags than seat belts that are $100+ each.

anyhow, he clearly is pissed at me here because I'm interrupting his snack.


PS. I just bought some 44¢ stamps. I'm sure you are thinking, who cares. I do! For a few years now, I've only had old stamps that I had to pair up w/ 1,2, & 3¢ stamps. Just 6 more letters to go and I will be normal! Soon I will kiss you goodbye, last Yoda stamp and start rockin' it w/ Lisa Simpson. >>>disclosure: I still have ~4 sheets of 10¢ stamps to get rid of.