I was not surprised to see "Vegan Treats" at the opening of the festival with a line of customers snaking around the corner. "Vegan Treats" is an extraordinarily tasty bakery out of Pennsylvania. They offer exquisite vegan carrot cake, peanut butter bomb cake, cookies and creme cakes, brownies, cinnamon buns...and MORE. Before I go off on a tangent and lost sight of my review of the festival I'll just let you check out their website for yourself.
Seriously tempted to munch on something while I browsed the festival I decided it would be best to try some new foods. I managed to walk past Vegan Treats without buying anything...at least until I was through with the festival.
My first tent was a vendor offering samples of vegan meatballs sauteed in a lightly salted marinade. It was hands down delicious. I made my way around to several other vendors--picking up informational pamphlets and sampling new foods. I saw many people grab a vegetarian chili nacho plate or sip on coconut milk straight from a coconut. While there was a decent variety of vendors, most of it wasn't new. I wasn't blown away by any one vendor with vegetarian information or food samplings. There were approximately 25 vendors in total. But for the nation's capital I expected a bit more of a production.
The most memorable moment of the festival was when I sampled dog food. No joke. As a long time vegetarian I know that meat eaters will make sometimes make fun of tofu or other soy products and call them "dog food". Frequently when meat eaters try a soy product for the first time they will either spit it out or remark at how tasty it is. But quite often I hear that tofu and soy products can taste like card board...I've been known to say this myself. However, I'm not kidding when I say I tried dog food. I was making my food sampling rounds and walked into some type of healthy dog food vendor. Not looking up at the company signs all I saw was a table filled with small biscuits. The first small bowl said "blueberry". Not looking any different than a normal cookie, I picked it up and took a bite. It wasn't until I had nearly finished chewing the very dry biscuit and a man told me I shouldn't be eating it that I noticed it was dog food. To be fair, not knowing it was dog food, it wasn't all that bad tasting. I did run to the trash and spit it out immediately.
This was the perfect time to return to Vegan Treats and get rid of the dog food taste. I bought the peanut butter mousse bomb. Having tried them once before at last year's Boston Vegetarian Food Festival, I was not disappointed at all.