Being Vegan in San Francisco


San Francisco. California. Golden Gate Bridge. These have been my dreams for as long as I can remember and I was lucky enough to be able to go in September!

It is always daunting when going on holiday as to whether there will be anything for a vegan to eat and also, not knowing what obstacles you will be presented with. We flew with Virgin Atlantic and I was extremely pleased with their vegan meal option for the long haul flight. They provided a meal of rosemary mashed potato with olives and stew, a bread roll with vegan butter, dried apple pieces and a raspberry puree jelly plus a mixed bean panini towards the end of the flight.

(photo courtesy of Stanford Court Hotel)

We stayed at the Stanford Court Hotel on California Street which is on the corner of California and Powell. This is a perfect hotel for anyone visiting the city as you have the cable car lines right outside the door and are central to all landmarks and places of interest. We had a beautiful Standard King Room overlooking the cable cars and looking out to the bay. The hotel was extremely accommodating and made amazing vegan banana pancakes for me one morning and a vegan toasted sandwich one evening (we only ate at the hotel a couple of times as we like to be out and about exploring and finding new eateries everyday).

Basil Tofu Scramble at The Plat Cafe

As we stayed in San Francisco for just over a week it gave us plenty of time to venture out and try new restaurants. A favourite place we visited for both breakfast and lunch was The Plant Cafe. They have multiple restaurants all over San Francisco and an amazing array of various food options and delicious smoothies. Recommendation: Avocado on Toast with toasted garlic and Plant Burger.

A locals coffee haven close to the Ferry Building is Philz Coffee. This is a coffeehouse chain where each cup is brewed one at a time to the customers individual taste. They have a huge menu from light to medium to dark roasts plus tea and decaf alternatives. One reason I love the this coffee store is that they sell Pepples Donut Farm Donuts - all 100% organic and vegan! On a weekend you can find Pepples Donuts at the market in the Ferry Building however if you want the fix everyday and can't wait for the weekend then Philz is the place to go. Recommendation: Sooo Good coffee and Coffee Iced donut

If you are looking for the old 50's style American diner then take a seat in a booth at Lori's Diner. This diner has amazing artwork, old jukebox machines and even a vintage car! You can find the first and original Lori's on Mason which is a 24 hour diner serving breakfast, lunch and dinner with added rock 'n' roll and nostalgia. Recommendation: The Veggie Chop Top without cheese and a Root Beer

Part way through the week we got a little tired and wanted to try something not too far from the hotel. Directly across the street is the Tonga Room and Hurricane Bar; a tiki bar with an asian menu inside the Fairmont Hotel. As this is a restaurant in the Fairmont the prices reflect the location however the menu and cocktails are amazing and with indoor rain and live music you definitely have to experience this once in your life. Recommendation: Fresh Rice Paper Spring Rolls and Tonga Chow Mein with tofu

Hidden away near Chinatown and towards Fishermans Wharf is Pena Pachamama. This is a brilliant little restaurant serving traditional Bolivian and raw organic food with the entire menu being vegan and gluten free. On weekends there is amazing live music and dancing along with delicious food and great service. Recommendation: Vegan Albodingas

Besides the food there is so much to see and do in San Francisco and we tried to do everything! We saw the sea lions at Fishermans Wharf, shopped at Pier 39, walked across Golden Gate Bride, rode the Cable Cars (multiple times), toured Alcatraz, explored Golden Gate Park, watched Sumo Wrestlers at Japantown, watched a Giants Game at AT&T Park and took pictures of the famous Lombard Street. We did find it surprisingly difficult to find vegan food in San Francisco, which was stressful and upsetting at times, however I assume this may be because we didn't go too far from downtown.

We had a great time and can definitely tick this off our bucket list!

Let me know if you have been to San Francisco or have any recommendations of places to visit for the next Being Vegan post!

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