Vegan journey through Texas.

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So happy to be back in Pennsylvania with our fall-like chill in the air and NO humidity.  Windows open.  Bill and I took a holiday to Texas to celebrate our 18th wedding anniversary (albeit a little early thanks to Homecoming).  We decided to visit the San Antonio Riverwalk and Alamo as well as tour Austin.  Of course, it was my goal to find everything vegan along the way and Texas did not let us down!  Now I’ve been vegetarian for almost 2 years now and vegan for 10 months.  I knew going to Texas and eating vegan may pose a challenge in the land of bbq but it so was not!

First off the heat and humidity was almost unbearable.  Worst than the east coast in August!  HOLY humidity!  Running was a bit fun but we did manage to get two runs happily and completely sweaty.  I finished out my week with 25 miles as planned.

So we landed in Austin on Thursday and hit up Veggie Heaven on Guadalupe.  We weren’t overly impressed with this restaurant. I don’t ever care about the atmosphere per se of a restaurant because some of the best restaurants are hole-in-the-walls.  I’m just not a fan of fried tofu and heavy sauces.  The service was great otherwise.

Hubby did rent me a Mini Cooper – which I was investigating for my daughter who will be needing a car next year.  Super fun and had to include a shot of that!

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From there we headed to San Antonio.  Our hotel was awesome.  Southern hospitality was 5 star.  We stayed at the Omni right on the Riverwalk.  It was just lovely to walk and run along the river.  The area was just incredible.  For dinner we headed to the old Pearl Brewery – which has been converted into office and restaurant/storefronts. Many -and I mean many, restaurants and bars to choose from. We went to Green – which was insanely awesome vegan food and desserts!  Service was 5 star and everything we shared was off the charts awesome.

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I loved that they had these lists on their walls.  Fun information!

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And the next day we went to the Alamo – which was so much fun and so educational!

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We also toured the historic district, which was so lovely and filled with southern style.

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And some shots from the Riverwalk.

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Bill and I in for about 26 hours without sleep.

From our two day visit in San Antonio, we decided to head north back up to Austin (thankfully post rainstorm).  Hotter and yes, more humid!  We did stop at Vegeria Vegan Tex Mex.  We had the kitchen sink nachos, which may be the best thing ever!  It’s about 20 minutes outside of San Antonio on your way to Austin. A must go-to!

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Our first night in Austin was pretty low key. We hit up the downtown Whole Foods and then went to the Domain to walk around and have dinner.  I think going sleepless on Wednesday caught up with me and I needed a low key night.

Austin, which is known for being “weird” was very nice.  We ran early on the first morning and I was blessed to step into what I believe was a quicksand area – yes, it truly was not but felt quite similar!  Thankfully I needed new sneakers but the remaining 4 miles was like running with cement boots!  It didn’t stop me.

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We also saw a drunk driver flip his car 3 times across the highway…. eventful and prayerful run to say the least.

We were lucky that Austin is the home base for Whole Foods, which served as my smoothie and breakfast connection. So much fun!  All vegan and totally energizing!
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From there we rented bikes and took a ride around the very busy Lady Bird Lake.  Hot, humid and very trail-like course due to the vast amounts of rain they had the day before.  It was very scenic and quite lovely but very packed and hard to navigate with runners, kids and dogs.

Post ride, we went to Capital City Bakery . Yes, before lunch and YES it was so worth it!  Hubby had a carrot cake cupcake and I had a confetti cupcake.  INSANELY fabulous!  Totally vegan. Plus the cutest little area to eat it outside.

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From there we walked down the street to Counter Culture and had lunch.  Highly recommend as well. It was Saturday brunch with a limited menu but all vegan and all fabulous.  We split tofu nachos that were the bomb!

Post food frenzy, we walked around 6th street and my observations are this…  Austin has a unique culture, a tremendous amount of bars and many people that smoke~ which was strange to see for some reason.  We then migrated to the SoCo area to shop, walk around and get a snack.  We also picked up some souvenirs for our girls and my dad.  It was a lovely afternoon filled with great eccentricities.

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Have to include a pic of what appears to be Cowboy boot mecca aka Allen’s – if you’re into that:

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Dinner – of course, always on my mind, we planned on hitting up food trucks. Food trucks in Austin are huge and I love it!  They actually have trailer parks dedicated to them.  The first part of dinner was at Conscious Cravings.

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Those fries were awesome and baked not fried!  Totally a must-get item for sure – Rosemary baked fries.  YUM!  The quinoa salad also did not let us down.  So yummy.

From there we were determined, after several attempts, to try the “best” vegan burger in Austin.  After much searching, they need to update their website – we hit up Arlo’s food truck for a vegan bacon cheeseburger to split.

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The review… well let’s just say this – I was a carnivore 2 years ago and this vegan burger rivals In N Out’s burger any single day!  HOLY moly and it’s vegan?  Awesome!  Will dream about this for maybe the next 10 years!  Bill and I also split this… I probably should’ve gotten my own!

This wraps up my food/travel review of HOTstin… ummm I mean Austin and San Antonio.  The southern hospitality was charming. The y’alls and howdies were adorable every single time we heard it.  People were kind and quite personable.  Now onto the next journey…

Today I ran at the gym 6.25 miles and lifted weights.  I also got in a 5 mile walk with my friend to catch up.  I want to soak up this sunny cool day today as much as I can.

oxo
~Robin

 

 

 

 

— Knead to Cook

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