~24-Hour Vegan Food Tour in West Hollywood, CA
[Trip took place in November 2019.]
I used to spend hours upon hours online devouring Walt Disney World dining reports, even when I didn’t have a trip in the works. I loved reading about everyone’s meals and restaurant experiences. Once I went vegan the dining reports became a lot less appealing for obvious reasons. So, with the discovery of all the amazing vegan restaurants and food out there, I am excited to bring the trip dining report back into my life. I’m now writing my own dining reports for fun and hopefully it will provide a cool example of how you can create your own 1-day vegan food tour on vacation or even in your own town. Without further adieu, 24 hours in one of my all time favorite places — West Hollywood, CA.
Vegan Food Tour in West Hollywood Stop 1: Getting ready to WeHo it up right!
Driving in from Scottsdale, AZ, we arrived in Los Angeles on the Tuesday afternoon before Thanksgiving. Our arrival night tradition is to eat at our fave vegan Italian restaurant, Pura Vita.
I had refrained from eating too much on the drive from Arizona to save my appetite for dinner. Because of this, when we arrived I was BEYOND HANGRY. My stomach began to rumble even more when I realized our reservation was still a few hours out. I called to see if we could get an earlier time and we were offered a table in just 3o minutes. The person on the phone was apologetic, seemingly assuming that it would be impossible for us to take the reservation (L.A. traffic and all) but I said emphatically, “We’ll take it!!” Our hotel is only about a half mile away. So, we were able to hustle down to Santa Monica Blvd. and have a divine vegan Italian dinner.
The Pura Vita Vegan Eats
Even though we planned to feast all day the following day (Thanksgiving), we lived it up at Pura Vita with the baked Alfredo, Chickpea parm, and spaghetti and meatballs. We typically go with the chocolate cake because, uhm, chocolate cake, but we went with the Spiced & Iced cookies and ice cream. It was fun to change it up and the as the server said, the flavors complimented each other well. On another note, I feel like Pura Vita should be in the running for best logo. A knife through a tomato with the rainbow flag. Just brilliant.
Home Sweet Home In WeHo
After dinner, we had a leisurely walk back to our hotel, the Andaz on Sunset. When we are on our food tours, we love to walk everywhere we go. It’s a fun way to see the city, allows us to avoid the traffic nightmares, and makes room to eat even more vegan food. When I get to WeHo, I feel a sense of having arrived home. It is fun and relaxing to look out at the billboards and bustle and then fall asleep to the hum of Sunset Blvd traffic. Having spent my early 20s living in Los Angeles, sometimes I think L.A. imprinted on me as home. I just love being here and living it up with my husband. Fun times!
The Hustle & Bustle of the Andaz on Sunset by Hyatt
One of the best parts of our WeHo trips is heading down really early to a still and quiet hotel lobby. We sit with our tea, coffee, and the L.A. Times as the morning silent hum becomes a steady energetic bustle. The market in the lobby has several vegan options. I typically get fruit or oats and perhaps a pressed juice. Once things pick up and the hotel has come to life, it’s time to get started!
Thanksliving Eve Festivities
Today, the day before Thanksgiving, is going to be spent hanging around the hotel and WeHo. We have over 22 miles of walking from vegan feast to vegan feast on Thanksgiving. So, it’s time to rest up and live it up locally. WeHo!
Running on Sunset
After the hotel lobby fun, it’s time for my first run of the trip. Running at sea level is joy. I live in Colorado at nearly a mile high so my legs and lungs enjoy the extra O2 and I feel extra speedy. I head out West on Sunset running through WeHo into Beverly Hills. My pre-teen self pays homage to River Phoenix with a quick nod to the Viper Room and then enter the perfectly tree-lined streets of Beverly Hills. The smells of the trees and the sun and the wind. It’s simply indulgent. Three miles in, I turn around excited to get back and ready to eat.
Vegan Food Tour in West Hollywood Stop 2: Were We Wowed By Vow Burger?
After a shower and vegan protein fueling, it’s time for our first stop of the day – VowBurger. This will be our first visit to VowBurger. And, we have high expectation because it’s vegan food in L.A. and we have heard so many positive things about their food and mission. But could it really be as good as Monty’s and other area burgers? Just a couple miles from our hotel, it’s a cool little burger shop. Simple in style and message. VowBurger vows to provide delicious environmentally friendly food. On board with that!
The VowBurger Eats
We split a single, double, and order of curly fries. This burger was on the top tier of vegan burgers – which in L.A. – is saying a lot. It’s a simple burger. It doesn’t get all messy and fall everywhere and that’s not a bad thing. It has great taste and a delicious unique sauce. Theses burgers were almost reminiscent of the Whopper, but only higher quality and cruelty-free. VowBurger’s messaging is more about environment than animals which is cool. I’ve become spoiled by all the restaurants in L.A. that have vegan animal messages but all good. I vow to return!
Vegan Food Tour in West Hollywood Stop 3: Sweet Deliciousness at Sugar Taco
Even after the big meal at VowBurger we were ready to eat. Please note that “ready to eat” is different from being hungry, LOL. It’s hard not to be “ready to eat” on a vegan food tour and trust me, we’ve tested the limits on this. We headed towards the WeHo-based vegan taqueria, Sugar Taco. I was excited to go here because my husband hadn’t been yet. I had brought him back food from here but it’s not the same as seeing the vibe and feeling the character of the place in person.
The Sugar Taco Eats
This was a fun stop. We sampled the conchas and vegan horchata. Yes, you heard me right, vegan horchata. L.A. has plant-based, non-dairy everything. Fun music and delicious dessert. Score!
Movie at Sunset, On Sunset: Knives Out
After Sugar Taco, we walked back to the hotel to freshen up and see what was next up on our list. We decided to head out to see a movie. Thanks to AMC’s A-List program, I had movie credits to burn. I swear there are vegan restaurants everywhere in L.A. We thought about stopping at the Veggie Grill for their vegan wings, but opted to head onto the movie and save our appetite for dinner. To be honest, we were bursting at the seams. If we could have fit in more food at that point, we would have. Because, vegan wings. But alas, we were stuffed to the gills. We saw Knives Out – a fun and perfect movie for a holiday eve.
Vegan Food Tour in West Hollywood Stop 4: Fresh is Phat!
Prior to the movie we had debated whether we were going to eat at Nic’s On Beverly, Gracias Madre, or the new import from Canada, Fresh on Sunset. We hadn’t been to Fresh yet so we decided to check it out. There was a break in the rain and the moisture in the air combined with the night lights made for a magical holiday walk down Sunset. When we stepped into Fresh, I couldn’t decide if it felt like we were in a 50s kitchen, a Disney restaurant, or what, but I immediately vibed with the theming and decor. The bakery and juice case were so appealing. I could have just sat and stare at it for awhile.
The Fresh On Sunset Eats
Our waiter was super friendly. It’s a lot of fun to talk with restaurant employees about vegan food in LA. The restaurant was pretty empty because it was Thanksgiving eve. This made for a calm and relaxing meal. We started with hot chocolate and kombucha. Then, we split the buffalo wrap and a greens bowl (my attempt at being healthy.). For dessert we got a candy bar and cupcake. Does it get any better than this? A full day of plant-based decadence in West Hollywood. YUM!
It’s a Wrap!
After dinner we strolled down Sunset back to the Andaz ready to get some rest before our big Thanksliving day. It was forecasted to storm most of the day so we were concerned if we would be able to execute our plan of walking to Shojin in Culver City back to Crossroads Kitchen in WeHo. If you want to read about our Thanksgiving in LA, you can check it out HERE.
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Top 10 Vegan Eats in West Hollywood, CA
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