Whistler isn’t exactly known for it’s vegetarian and vegan cuisine (although that could be changing!) so for a larger selection of mouthwatering plant-based dishes it’s sometimes necessary to travel a little further afield. So imagine my delight when I heard that two new vegan cafés were opening in North Vancouver!
I decided to try out these cafés last Monday evening, because I was traveling to the city to hear plant-based nutrition expert Dr. Neal Barnard speak (more on that later). For starters I went to Tao Organics, a small but pleasant raw food café tucked cleverly away, so that you definitely felt like rewarding yourself once you have found it. The offerings were presented almost in miniature, but the advantage of this was you could try a number of dishes without going over budget or feeling overly stuffed. I decided to try just the pizza as I knew I was heading somewhere else for more food afterwards. The pizza was a cracker crust with veggies, mushrooms and a tangy tomato sauce. Very tasty! It was served with a side of very more-ish kale chips. Next time I will definitely give the lasagna a try, and I’m sure I could be tempted to try one of the desserts too!
Main course was to be served by Buddha-Full, who specialize in smoothies and juices, but also serve a nice selection of raw and cooked vegan dishes. The beet burger sparked my curiosity so I opted to try it. I enjoyed it so much I vowed to find out how to make it myself! It was served my favourite way, wrapped in green leaves, and also came with a side salad accompanied by goji berries and a zesty dressing. Deeeeelicious!
Delighted with my new vegan dining options on the North Shore I then headed downtown to hear Dr Neal Barnard’s talk. Barnard has written several books on plant-based nutrition and health, and is also head of the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine. He presented the case for following a plant-based diet and shared some stats on the benefits of being vegan. He gave tips on how to transition your diet and introduced the next 21 Day Kickstart. After the talk questions were asked and answered, and the evening was perfectly rounded off by a lady in the audience who shared her story of personal transformation. She had seen Barnard on TV in January, started following his diet a few weeks ago and had already seen a huge difference in her health.
If you’d like to experience what a plant-based diet can do for you, then check out the 21 Day Kickstart. There are lots of helpful resources, recipes and even an app! The next one starts this coming Monday, April 2nd.
–Hayley Ingman, March 28th, 2012