For New Year’s Eve, we decided to treat ourselves to a very delicious and satisfying meal at a place in Toronto where we had been meaning to eat for a very long time. The day had finally arrived…we had the privilege of dining at the Hogtown Vegan in Toronto. I’d heard rave reviews from vegans and omnivores alike. After all, it is a restaurant focusing on comforting soul food inspired by meals found in the American South. In fact, the show was recently featured on the Food Network show, “You’ve Gotta Eat Here!”. Though we no longer have a cable TV subscription, one of my meat-eating friends told me all about the episode and said that she really wanted to give it a try. Hogtown Vegan might not be the healthiest dining option, but we’re allowed a treat now and again, right! They were serving a special Prix Fixe three-course menu on New Year’s Eve.
The menu for the night:
First Course: Sweet Potato-Chipotle Soup – with cornbread and spiced butter for the table
Second Course: Ancho-Bourbon Roasted Tofu – avocado salsa, corn succotash, pickled onions, pepper coulis
Third Course: Upside Down Pecan Cake – caramel, coconut whipped cream
To start, we ordered some drinks! After all, it was New Year’s Eve!
I was really pleased to see the “Dark and Stormy” on there, which reminded me of our recent trip to Bermuda (it is one of their official drinks). It was a tough decision, but I ended up trying the Southern Tea and Justin got a Caesar. He said he hadn’t tried a Caesar since his pre-vegan days, so it was nice to have a veganized version to try!
As soon as we received our drinks, the cornbread and spiced butter was brought to the table. It was melt-in-your-mouth yum! And the spiced butter offered a really nice kick that paired wonderfully with the sweet potato chipotle soup that was served shortly after. The creamy and spicy soup was the perfect comforting food for a freezing winter day.
Right after we finished eating our soup and bread, the main course was served to us. It was a huge plate of food consisting of ancho-bourbon roasted tofu, avocado salsa, and corn succotash. I have no idea how the tofu was prepared, but it was not like any tofu I’d ever tried. The texture was crispy on the outside, yet really tender and moist. It was extremely flavorful, and the spicy theme continued through this dish. I’m not really a huge avocado fan (I know, blasphemy!), so I wasn’t loving the salsa. But, out of any avocado side that I’ve tried, it was probably the best. The corn succotash, however, was amazing. The tofu paired really well with the sides for one incredible bite. I would really love to know how to make this one at home. Oh, and there were two cute, salty plantain chips as a garnish, too!
By this point, I was already completely stuffed. I had to give myself a couple of moments before attempting to eat dessert. After trying a forkful of cake and coconut whipped cream, I was determined to eat all of it. The cake itself was light and airy with the sweetness of caramel and toasted pecans. While I didn’t succeed in eating the whole slice of cake, I brought the rest back to our hotel room and enjoyed it just after midnight while taking in our view of some fireworks. I’m very pleased to have enjoyed this as my last dessert of 2014, and my first sweet treat of 2015.
Our first visit to Hogtown Vegan did not disappoint. We were met with friendly and fast service, delicious food, and we can’t wait to return to try their regular menu. If you’re looking for some comfort food that you haven’t eaten since going vegetarian or vegan or if you’re veg-curious, this is a great place to eat in Toronto!
1056 Bloor St. W., Toronto, Ontario
Lunch: Monday-Friday 12:00-5:00pm
Dinner: Monday-Saturday 4:00-11:00pm, Sunday 4:00-10:00pm
Brunch: Saturday & Sunday 11:00-3:00pm