Sunday, August 26, 2012

Eden and Acadia: Vacation Heaven

Maine's majestic coast and superior forest do indeed prove to be one of the Earth's greatest treasures. Let's face it, sometimes the things physically close to you are overlooked regardless of how remarkable they may be.

This summer, Joe and I decided we were past due on a trip to Bar Harbor. We stayed one night but really needed at least three to take in the magnificence of Acadia National Park. 

Tuesday morning, when my jarring iPhone alarm went off at 5:30am we managed to pack up the remainder of things, hop in the car and drive to the top of Cadillac Mountain for sunsrise. The experience proved surreal for two reasons. First, the top of the mountain had a higher human to tree population at 5:55am than I had seen in the park the day before. Second, because most people were in pajama pants and sweatshirts, trying to hide heavy eyelids to their morning mountain comrades and were focused on looking over a cusp of the Earth. Camera and iPhone in hand of course.  

"Second star to the right, and straight on till morning" 

Sidenote: I just want to throw out a suggestion to the park to increase revenue. How great would a coffee stand at the top of Cadillac Mountain opened 10 minutes before sunrise be? I'm sure you could pay a college kid to run it. I'm not saying you need to offer Wi-Fi or anything and soft seating, but seriously, any coffee would be a hit with the tourists. You can call it the The Cadillac Mt. Caffeine Fix. Extra bonus for souvenir Cadillac cups. You're welcome. 

I highly recommend that if you do venture to Bar Harbor, force yourself to wake up early in the morning and see the sunrise. If I didn't know the origins of the novel Peter Pan, I would have taken the view of the lush tiny islands as a writers inspiration for a perfect Never Never Land. 

Anticipating there would be limited options in the vegan realm I stocked up on protein bars. To my surprise Joe said that he researched and actually found a vegan restaurant. I was ecstatic and rightfully so. It is the first FULL SERVICE ONLY VEGAN cuisine restaurant I have found in Maine that, in my opinion, is on par to other well-known restaurants in metro areas. 

I am disappointed there is not another in Portland.

The place is Eden and I had no idea the food would be great until we received our appetizers. Because I wasn't expecting to do a full review, I didn't take copious notes. However, here is a brief summary of the food we enjoyed. 

Bread: Baked lavosh strips

Beer Battered Pickled Jalapenos & Onion RingsHouse-Smoked Maple Barbecue Sauce, Creamy Herb & Garlic Aioli   $8

Joe ordered…Singapore Noodles
Wok-Charred Cabbage, Broccoli, Onions, Carrots, local Fresh Tofu, & Rice Noodles,
Fresh Chili, Kefir Lime, & Lemongrass Yellow Curry

I ordered...Almond & Panko Crusted Soy Seitan Cutlets
Pan-Fried House-Made Soy Seitan Cutlets, Sauteed Greens,
Chilled Yukon Potato & Charred Leek Salad,
Dijon, Caper, & Dill Vinaigrette   

Chocolate Peanut Butter Mousse Pie. Yum.

Click here to visit their website. 

I would say pass on the martini, it was much too strong for my liking. The beer options were great. 

Bad lighting - but TOTAL vegan comfort food. Amazingly good!!

Definitely venture into Eden if you're in Bar Harbor. I plan to make it yearly ritual. There is also a small health foods grocery store so you should have a problem finding a plentiful amount of vegan-friendly fare. 


Sunday, August 5, 2012

Gentlemen of the Road Tour: Mumford, Music and Vegan Beer

Well, that was fun.

Did you go? It was awesome. A plethora of people and music and sunshine and fireworks and people and more people and dancing. The Eastern Prom in Portland, Maine was a perfect place for the kick-off of the Gentlemen of the Road tour. The bands were fantastic and I actually walked away with a list of “must look-up on iTunes” immediately.

I have to admit that there was one thing I was a little disappointed in. One thing that makes music festivals awesome. I’m not going to subject you to a diatribe of pro-vegan animal rights stop-serving-hamburgers-at-concerts bull crap because, let’s face it, that’s never going to happen. The masses like their hamburgers. I’m also not going to complain about the lines or the fact that the blanket room was minimal at best… those are but minor mishaps. I’m happy we got an outside concert in Portland, Maine and that it was Mumford.

Let’s consider something more important. Something some might consider a close number two after the music… the beer.

I think the real question is: How do you put on a hipster concert in the middle of Portland, Maine without considering vegan brew?

(Don’t think it was hipster concert --- did you see the PASSPORT you were carrying in as your ticket or ANY of the vintage signage a’happening? How about knitted shirt/dresses with bright accented sunglasses – and of course the skinny jeans. Totes hipster concert.)

Passport into Mumford and friends musicland.
Hipsters like vegan beer too.

Shipyard and Gritty’s are not vegan, which were the only beer options. Don’t believe me? Barnivore says so. Which wouldn’t be a big deal if you could leave the concert, but there was no re-entry. 

I know us veggies are not a big crowd, but please, take a look around the city of Portland. There are 12 gazzillion veg-friendly microbrews in (or in close proximity to) Portland, Maine that could have been served. It’s not necessary to name them… (Allagash, Maine Beer Company, Rising Tide, Baxter Brewing Co., it’s cool).

Plus, I’m not sure if you know some vegans. There is a small percentage of us that are fanatical, pedantic and well, fucking crazy at best. Some vegans get angry when they pay for $70 worth of concert ticket with no beer options. I’m not an angry vegan. But when we take over the world some day (as noted in the most ridiculousness of ridiculous articles by The Alarmist , Alarmed by Vegans!!!. You should read it to prepare.) there will need to be some re-consideration of the way these concert deals go down.

I feel as though I’m doing a service to the other vegans on the next three stops of the Gentlemen of the Road tour. We vegans need to look out for each other. Good luck!


Friday, August 3, 2012

Summer photo files: Random and wonderful

Lone bike attached to the stop sign. 
Neville and his chew toy.
Ernie focused on my veggies chips….
Summer shoes.
Aprons… love 'em.
Acadia the beautiful… more to come on this...


Allie and Charlie got married!