So I wanted to start doing something a little bit different around here. This blog has always mainly been a personal outlet for me. I've written about some very intimate truths, and the inner workings of my mind, and life. Health and wellness has always been, and will always be a huge part of that. I'm extraordinarily passionate about living a vegan lifestyle, and eating a whole food plant based diet for the health of not just the planet but for ourselves.
I also very much believe that indulgence is a part of a healthy lifestyle. Even "bad" things in moderation can be part of an overall healthy diet. I'm a huge foodie, so going out, and getting to experience new flavors is something that I love, and very much need in my life. I'm extremely lucky to live in the suburbs of one of the most amazing vegan city's in the country, Philadelphia. As much I adore nature, and need lush green scenery with fresh air and foliage, I'm also completely invigorated by the hustle and bustle of the city. In recent years there's been an explosion of entirely vegan eateries which have opened up all throughout Philly, and the surrounding suburbs. Even in Omni restaurants you'd be hard pressed not to find at least a few vegan options, if not entire vegan sections of menu's. From Cuban, to Chinese, to traditional American diner food, donut shops, and raw organic health food; there really is something for everyone.
But the one thing that I noticed my beloved city was seriously lacking? Vegan food/restaurant bloggers. With such a vibrant food scene, and ever burgeoning vegan food scene, I was pretty surprised when I went looking for blogger reviews on the many restaurants that I wanted to try and came up empty. So I figured why not do it myself? It would give me a great excuse for my daughter and I to get out of the house, and eating some (hopefully) delicious new foods.
After a brief but intense storm yesterday, it was startlingly sunny and humid today. But still not quite hot enough to keep us inside all day long. So off we went to check out a brand new restaurant that opened up in South Philly, in the East Passyunk Ave neighborhood (pronounced Paa-Shunk for locals). Serving classic diner foods like pancakes, waffles, and "egg" dishes alongside sandwiches and BLT's made with your choice of either tempeh or coconut bacon. Just make sure to go after 10am if you want something other than breakfast foods, and for a delicious assortment of pastries make sure to get there on the weekends.
This place is so cozy, with mismatched tables and chairs, and a quintessential diner feel without being at all gimmicky. When you walk in you're handed menu's, and told to sit wherever you like. There are no waiters here, you order food at the counter, and clean your plates up yourself. Which to some may be a turnoff, but I can't say that I minded it at all.
Honestly, there was so much on their menu that I wanted to try, everything sounded fantastic. But ultimately I went with a few things which I'd never had before, either at another restaurant, or that I'd made myself.
I ordered the biscuits & sausage gravy. Admittedly, I've never met a biscuit I didn't like. Except from Whole Foods, their vegan anything is absolutely terrible, at least in my area.
Biscuits from The Tasty were exactly what I was hoping for. They were the perfect balance of light and dense, and the gravy that they were paired with had just the right amount of seasoning and spices.
This dish was very satisfying all by itself, and I really didn't need anything else to fill me up, but I just had to try a little more, so I ordered a side of tofu scramble with onions and coconut bacon. For all of the time that I've been vegan, this was actually my first time eating tofu scramble, and I have to say that it was really good. Again, the seasoning was spot on. Now I'm not exactly sure what I was expecting from the coconut bacon, but I wasn't let down. It added a nice touch of smokiness, and crunch to the scramble.
My boyfriend ordered the Greek omelet, which is made with a chickpea flour base. Personally, I've never been a fan of olives. (I know, I'm horrible at being Italian; a vegan who hates olives!) Aside from that, I enjoyed the omelet, and the tofu feta was especially good. Now if you're expecting an egg-y consistency or flavor, you'll be pretty disappointed. This definitely doesn't taste anything like eggs, but was good nonetheless. Though, I don't think it was anything to write home about, and that's not a reflection of the restaurant. I think it's really more of a personal taste issue. My boyfriend was not a fan of the omelet, but agreed that it probably had more to do with his palate than the food itself.
My daughter ordered the buckwheat chocolate chip pancakes, of course. Now, pancakes are pretty difficult to completely screw up, but a lot of the time even non-vegan pancakes can come out dry and crumbly, which I really detest. But these were truly perfect pancakes. Sweet, but not too sweet. Moist, but not mushy, and you get a nice filling plateful. I'd honestly come back just for coffee and pancakes. But really the biscuits and gravy were the star of the show for me.
Overall, I think that The Tasty is a fantastic little diner, with some really deliciously filling food that you probably can't find very many other places.
Check out The Tasty's Facebook page below with their hours, and full menu.
1401 S. 12th Street, Philadelphia PA