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Monday, December 13, 2010

Pilgrimage for Pastries

You know you're vegan and in good company when driving an hour and a half to support a new vegan bakery on a rainy day sounds like a fine idea.

On Sunday, a couple vegan ladies and I made a pilgrimage to the new Babycakes NYC location in Downtown Disney. (In case you hadn't heard by now, this new Babycakes location pushed out McDonald's. While cupcakes and donuts aren't "health foods," it sure is nice to know that there are vegan AND gluten-free baked goods available in Downtown Disney.)

I wasn't sure what to expect since I just said "I'm in!" when someone said "carpool to Babycakes." On the drive over, I imagined a bustling cupcake cafe with cute tables and lots of pink, filled with smiling, laughing patrons with frosting smears on their noses.

Unfortunately, my vision was not quite the reality. This Babycakes location isn't actually a stand-alone store front, but more like a mini cupcake hub nestled in the corner of the same building as Fresh A-Peel and a chicken restaurant. It sounds like a weird spot for a vegan bakery, but it reaches more people, especially the general populous. Remember: a vegan diet is for every body!

There were two glass cases full of pretty little treats.

I know you want some close-ups.

Here's one of the employees, frosting the red velvet cupcakes.

And here are some other Babycakes employees, hard at work.

One of the employees, Emily, came out and chatted with us and offered us frosting shots.

Yes. Frosting shots.

It was delicious.

So what did I end up ordering for treats? I went with a red velvet cupcake and a crunch donut.

And let me say, it was worth the 90 minute drive.

My comrades' booties (why am I talking like a pirate now?):

Four other vegans joined us for the sweet festivities and we had a lovely time chatting and spiking our blood sugar. Working in reverse, we decided that lunch should come next. We went to Ethos Vegan Kitchen, just an hour before closing.

Since it was a Sunday, they only had a brunch menu available.

(Their menu looks pretty good, though, and I look forward to giving it a whirl sometime in the near future.)
I was going to get the tofu scramble, but when the cashier told me the breakfast burrito had tofu scramble AND home fries AND soy-sage, I figured that would be the better option. The breakfast burrito and the tofu scramble were the popular orders amongst our group.

Burritos are so unphotogenic.

Was the burrito good? Yeah, it was pretty good. Was it worth $8? No. Was it missing anything? Yes, VEGGIES. That's how I like my tofu scrambles, anyway. The burrito was a bit better than their scramble, though.

Ethos is a super-cute place, though. It's very cozy and actually kind of feels like an old tavern. Or maybe that was just because it was a rainy day... Nah, it's tavernous. And I like it. I also liked the cute felt art by the restrooms.

So, in short, I wasn't greatly impressed with Ethos' Sunday Brunch, but I have a feeling their regular menu could be better. There's only one way to find out, though. (You can't tell, but I winked after typing that sentence.)

And no matter what, if you find yourself in Orlando (or NYC or LA), go visit Babycakes! You won't believe it's vegan, gluten-free, soy-free, and sugar-free!

(Speaking of sweets, have you entered my Go Max Go candy bars giveaway yet? The winner will be randomly drawn on Thursday!)


  1. So the Babycakes hub looks exactly like the original and makes me desperately need one of their lemon coconut donuts.

  2. I totally heard you wink at the end there.

    How lucky you are for getting to try Babycakes...good choice on the red velvet. And frosting shots? BRILLIANT.