Sunday, June 19, 2011

My Trip to Bonnaroo & Some Other Good Things

So I was hoping to do another extensive post like I did last year about my experience at Bonnaroo, but I have to say that this year's trip felt like a lot of work and not nearly as much fun. Part of it was that I came back a day early, cutting out the day I usually have pretty much free to check out some shows and other stuff at the festival, and part of it was because, being pregnant this year, it was really hard for me to handle all the heat, dust & dirt, general smelliness, and the awful porta-potty situation. I don't recommend attending Bonnaroo or any other multi-day outdoor music festival while pregnant. Although the Florence & The Machine show that I did manage to catch made up for a lot of my discomfort. As did getting to meet and hang out with my friend Hillary while there.

The food situation was pretty much exactly the same as in previous years - lots of festival food, meaning lots of burgers and other meat and a plethora of deep-fried choices:

Burgers, burgers, and more burgers

Gator Nuggets anyone?
I'm a fan of the part of Bonnaroo dubbed "Centeroo" (because it's located in the center of the Bonnaroo grounds), which is like a mini-village of social activists, full of workshops, various campaign information and other fun stuff.

Learn how to garden at Bonnaroo!
There are a lot of smelly things at Bonnaroo, but at least compost is for a good cause.
Random picture of girls with a gigantic hula hoop in Centeroo. They never did manage to get that thing going.
Yes, KFC should stop destroying the forests. Also, chickens.
And I guess the food truck craze hit Bonnaroo this year too, because these were the only new food additions that I noticed. There were a couple veg options among them, but not many.

This truck had a vegetarian chickpea gyro, which you would have to order without the tzatziki sauce to keep it vegan.
Surprisingly, one of the few vegan options among the food trucks was from a meatball truck of all places. They had an eggplant, lentil, cilantro version that sounded like it might be tasty, if it wasn't a thousand degrees outside.
The meatball truck had clever slogans like "Eat my box" and "Balls deep," which I thought was funny because I have the sense of humor of an adolescent boy.

But like last year, I was lucky to be able to eat many of my meals in the catering tent - one of the perks of working at Bonnaroo. I love that they have a fresh juice and smoothie bar in there, and a fresh salad bar, which is pretty much all I ate while there. The first day of the festival they had bbq tofu on the menu, which was great, but the other days the vegan options (other than the salad bar) were kind of slim. Plenty of vegetarian stuff, but most of it drowning in cheese or creamy sauces. The one exception was the night that culinary students from Art Institute did the catering, which was mostly vegan, with a rice noodle dish, a tempeh stirfry with vegetables, and some other Asian-prepared veggies.

Art Institute culinary students prepared this meal.
What I ate the rest of the time - salad, some couscous salad & hummus
Florence & The Machine. That little spot of orange in the middle is her hair. Sorry for the terrible pic!
But since I felt guilty not having much in the way of food news from Bonnaroo to share with you, I thought I would share all the food porn pics I had sitting on my phone. Here's a record of some really good vegan eats I've had over the last month or so:

This is the amazing Zen slice from Viva Herbal Pizzeria. I actually crave these slices. They call this the "super antioxidant" pizza, but I just eat it because it's delicious and is topped with green tea herbed miso tofu, green tea basil pesto, shiitake mushrooms, maitake mushrooms, caramelized onions, sundried tomato, and roasted garlic, on a green tea herbed spelt crust.

I met a friend recently at Pure Food & Wine and we wanted just a small snack. We decided on these Hazelnut Crostini with Crimini Mushrooms garnished with caraway sauerkraut and apple cider reduction. Scrumptious.

We also shared this dessert, it was some kind of chocolate mousse mille feuille, with raspberry sorbet. Whatever it was called, it was heavenly.

Ok, and we also shared a classic sundae, which was my ulterior motive for suggesting that we meet there in the first place. I love this sundae so much! And the fact that everything there is raw never fails to completely blow my mind.

This is my new favorite dish on the menu at Angelica Kitchen (new to me, not to their menu). It's the hot open-faced tempeh sandwich that comes with mushroom gravy and ruby sauerkraut on a bed of spinach. You must get it with the scoop of mashed potatoes.

Before going to see the ballet at Lincoln Center, we went up to Peacefood Cafe for lunch and shared one of their delicious Caesar (vegan of course) salads.

And we also shared one of the Roasted Japanese Pumpkin sandwiches, which is pumpkin mashed with some black pepper and olive oil, topped with caramelized onions, ground walnuts, vegan feta cheese, and greens. A very unusual and very delicious combo!

And yet another amazing vegan pizza slice, this one from Whole Earth Bakery in the East Village. I love this slice and I also love that they chop up all those veggies for the pizza, because I would be too lazy to do this at home.

These are the vegan buckwheat waffles that I made for my husband on his birthday. Topped with fresh strawberries and soy whipped cream. I'm nice that way.

This is a brownie sundae that I shared (really, I shared it) from everyone's favorite vegan ice cream shop Lula's Sweet Apothecary. I'm using being pregnant as an excuse to make more frequent visits to Lula's, when the truth is that I crave it all the time anyway.

A friend of ours is an ice cream purist and doesn't put nearly enough (read: any) toppings on his ice cream. It still looks very pretty and 100% delicious.

But this is more like it. I might have had a bite of this sundae too.

And here's a gratuitous pic of my Bella, just because she is so cute and cuddly. Look at that little face!

I have some more vegan eats to post about soon so stay tuned!


  1. I was pretty grossed out by the mention of gater nuggets (yuck!), but all the beautiful pics of your vegan meals totally made up for it! Now I'm hungry! :)

  2. Sorry to hear it was hard to find vegan food there. :/ The food that the culinary students made looks amazing though!

    Bella is adorable!

  3. Oh good. Now it's 10:19 a.m. and I want ice cream :D

  4. wow- your food pics look delicious! especially the super antioxidant pizza! as for bonnaroo, it looks like you had a super fun time! boo for cheesy sauces, but yay for art students knowing how to make a super yum vegan dinner!

  5. All those pics are making me hungry! Also I am amazed that you were able to handle a music festival while pregnant. The heat always gets to me!

  6. Ha! Eatbox. hehehe.
    Love that Bella face.

  7. You look like you are having so much fun at Bonnaroo! If you get a chance though, I'd like to send you some info on an upcoming vegan cookbook by an author who's a fan of you and Vegan Good Things! Shoot me an email at!

  8. Gauri Radha गौरी राधाJune 29, 2011 at 1:54 PM

    Those vegan ice-cream desserts look incredible!! :-)

  9. OMG. I am starving after looking at all these pics and thinking about Viva pizza. My tummy is rumbling