This past weekend we made the drive down to Madison from Minneapolis to attend the Mad City Vegan Fest 2015. I had heard it inspired our own TCVegFest, so I wanted to experience it. It was also a good excuse for a small road trip to some delicious food.
Laura and I arrived just after the event started at 10am. There wasn’t a line which was nice. They handed us some raffle tickets, but neither of us were clear what to do with them. It was great getting there early so we didn’t have to wait in any lines to try the samples from the vendors!
One of the first was from Tex Tubbs Tacos. They had two salsas, guac, and chips. I tried the guac and hot. Yum!
Upton’s Naturals was next with some seitan bacon flavored mac and cheese. The flavor was good, but I would have preferred the bacon to be a bit more crispy.
General Tso’s Chicken from Whole Foods. They apparently sell a vegan version of the sauce. I will have to look for this next time I am there. I liked the flavor. It also seemed like a super easy way to make some tasty food for those lazy days.
Yumbutter had three different flavors of their enhanced butters. I tried the sunflower and Laura tried the almond. The staff said the almond is the best. I wasn’t fond of either. They add gojis, chia seeds, and other superfoods to nutbutters. Maybe on something, like a cracker, it would have been better than just plain.
Punk Rawk Labs, from Minneapolis, had some nutmilk cheeses to sample. I really like their nacho cheese. They were also very friendly and fun to talk to.
Spiced and Infused had four different flavors of vegan popcorn to sample. I really liked the bombay seasoning flavor. The taste of Indian spices reminded me of curry. I really need to try this at home next time I make a batch! They sell on amazon if you want to check them out.
After we sampled all of the vendors snacks, we realized there was a long line developing near the entrance. Somehow, we missed the goodie bag on the way in. The fifteen minute wait felt like an hour, but it was totally worth it. We got about a dozen different things including coconut trail mix and a can of soda. I don’t have a picture of the goodies as I ate most of them before I realized I should have taken a pic. Bad blogger…
I have never heard of Starlite before. They had some nice corn taquitos filled with a chipotle black bean mix. I liked them. There is a coupon code below in the photo if you want to check them out.
On our last trip to Madison, we missed out on trying Ladonia Café. It was the first food I purchased in the food court area.
I had heard their sweet potato tamales were really good, so I had to get one. It was warm and delicious. The sweet potato was wrapped inside the masa corn almost like a corn dog. I need to try making these at home sometime soon.
Amazingly, after all the samples and the tamale, I was still hungry. Laura and I couldn’t resist the ice cream waffle cones from Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream Company. Look at all the flavors they had!
Laura got the espresso oreo and I got the ultimate oreo. They use a soy base loaded with oreo goodness for these two. The waffle cone was great and a real treat since most cones other places sadly aren’t vegan. We sat outside under the bright blue sky and slowly enjoyed our cones. The weather was just perfect.
We finished off our Mad City Vegan Fest with a cooking demo from Dama Wells-Foster the owner of Sol D’Licious the 100% vegan restaurant in Kenosha, WI.
She made four different dishes during her 45 minute demo. They turned out pretty decent even though I felt like the food in her café was better. I am interested to play with the veggie burger recipe she demonstrated. Laura wants me to make the chocolate mousse.
I thought Mad City Vegan Fest was a great success. It was entertaining, full of tasty treats, and covered in loads of people. I’m happy we made the drive down to continue our exploration of the Madison vegan scene. Check out the Mad City Vegan Fest website to see when 2016 will be scheduled and maybe I will see you there!
Check out Laura’s post here: Mad City Vegan Fest 2015