Friday, April 20, 2012

Bigger and Better Vegan Shop-Up

I can't help it; I love the Vegan Shop-ups.  Every time I'd go to one of the Bust Craftaculars I'd find myself thinking about how awesome it would be if everything was vegan.  And, as if by magic, the Vegan Shop-Up arrived on the scene.  [UPDATE 4/27/12: Can I take credit for the upcoming Vegan Craftactular? (thanks, AK)]

Gone Pie chai nut brownie
It's hard enough to navigate these well-stocked and even more well-attended shop-ups without trying to simultaneously photographically document, so I tend to just snap a couple of shots here and there.  This is by no means intended to be an all-inclusive, photo-document of the event: just my own highlights.  In fact, the person who I assume is the official photographer of the shop-up always seems to wind up in the exact space I want to occupy, so I wholeheartedly avoid being that person with my camera; I'll defer to him for the official photo-recap.

When we turned onto Grattan, the entire area in and around the front of Pine Box was positively swarming with vegans.  There was a consistently equivalent line of customers awaiting the Cinnamon Snail's offerings.

Having just eaten, I opted for just a donut.  Just a donut?  Actually, yet another of their seemingly endless concoctions of amazingness: a chocolate cherry brownie donut to be exact.

This reminded me of the black forest cakes of my youth and I scarfed it down without offering any of my friends a bite.  Well, I did offer one bite to one friend, but I didn't really mean it!

My face sufficiently stuffed, I moved the Gone Pie table, which was conveniently located outside the entrance to Pine Box. Yep, outside. Some genius realized that it was a good idea to spread out onto the ample sidewalk in front of the bar and the set-up was excellent. Take a walk through the indoor Shop-up, come outside to unwind in the outdoor Shop-up, repeat.

Brenda Barbara!
Gluten-free galore: coconut brownies, rocky road brownies, sweet-potato corn bread, peanut butter caramel do you decide? The most important thing is that you do, or suffer the fate of my friend who found the rocky road brownies sold out.  The horror!

Inside, I did try a new (to me) item, Pelzer's Pretzels: everything flavor with a spicy beer mustard.  It was okay, but not authentically pretzely enough for my taste; perhaps because it's outta Philly and not NYC?  Give 'em a try and see what you think. 

I also picked up some Food for Lovers queso from the Vegan Bodega table, and bent his ear about some other terrific products I hope he'll consider carrying (Secret Aardvark hot sauce and Sweet Earth Chocolates mini-confections).

Because it was warm and I wasn't heading home anytime soon, I kept my purchases to a minimum.  I picked up a couple of items for a fellow blogger, and smuggled only the long-awaited, new, Gone Pie, chai nut brownie home for a nosh. 

Check out the new packaging:

As it happened, I managed to restrain myself from eating it all day, and then shared it with the esteemed tasting panel the next.

I know I say it every time I try something new, but I do think that this is my favorite Gone Pie creation.  The light chai spice, the brownie texture, and the crunch of the nuts...VM loved it so much that she wanted to comment on this blogpost before it was even written!

I have it on good authority that these goodies will be available on the Gone Pie website very soon.  Take a look around in case you'd like anything else in the meantime, and I'll let you know when the chai nut brownies are officially available.  There might even be something in it for you (wink wink)!

So there you have it: my time spent at the Vegan Shop-Up.  There was plenty more to see and do and eat; make sure to check out the next one so you don't miss anything.  See you there.


  1. Philly is known for its soft pretzels and that was most certainly NOT a Philly soft pretzel... I don't care what the company name was!

  2. I'm glad you liked the brownies, despite the hidden fruit. :-)

    Kinda waiting for VM to comment. No pressure...

  3. Abby,

    My Vegan Gut is still upset it missed out on Gone Pie - Rocky Road Brownies. Next time I'm going to preorder!!

  4. I thought soft pretzels were invented in Philly. (Yes, I'm from Philly.)

    So, in your expert opinion, do you think Gone Pie brownies would arrive in excellent shape if I ordered them online and had them shipped to a friend in Wisconsin?

  5. Pecan- Represent!

    Gone Pie- Can't you let me forget about the fruit? You're going to blow my cover. I have a reputation, you know! I've told VM that her fans await...

    MVG- You know my motto: buy soon, often, and in bulk

    Andrea- I had no idea that pretzels were originally from Philly. With mustard too? I cringe whenever I see a tourist in NYC eating them dry.

    I'd contact Gone Pie about how the weather affects her products, but I can tell you from experience that I've had items shipped to myself and to others and everything is always impeccably packed.

  6. I love soft pretzels - those are one of the things I was looking forward to trying at the shop up. Anyway, it sounds like they just keep getting better. hopefully they'll have one again this summer that can be outside as well.
    The black forest doughnut looks insane!
    AND thank you again (and Barbara) for the coconut brownie - it was incredible, really.

  7. Dear Gone Pie,
    Your display at the shop-up looked absolutely wonderful!!!! (inside or out)
    Your latest brownie was soooo delicious!! I love the idea of the individual packaging too...
    btw: Gone Pie is packed to perfection and capable of traveling safely to any location...
    Fondest wishes, VM

  8. Awwww...... thanks everybody!

    You're making me blush VM! Your check is in the mail. :-)

    Andrea: I do ship nationally. Not everything is great when it gets warmer. But I wouldn't let you order anything I wasn't confident would arrive intact. Feel free to email me if you have any questions (

    Next Shop Up is June 10th food feud!


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