The 6th Fabulous Vegan Bakeoff – a wrap up of my snacking!
Yesterday was the 6th Annual Fabulous Vegan Bake-off, as run by Toronto vegan superstars Lisa Pitman & Luke Albert (along with a huge crew of super friendly TVA Green Shirts!). I’ve been going since the 2nd annual vegan bake-off, I think it’s a fun event that encourages creativity and deliciousness in the Toronto vegan community. This year the event was held at the pretty shiny Daniels Spectrum building in the East End. Plenty of space for how big the event has gotten, which was great – only, not a lot of space for people lining up to get in. That’s a tough one. There were 500 tickets sold, so the main hall got pretty packed with all the folks nibbling and the tables of samples.
In years past I have gone a little wild, getting a bunch of plates to share out with friends; this year I stuck with two categories – Professionally Crafted GF goodies, and Professionally Crafted Vegan Classics Plate #2. It was hard to pick from the 12 categories (!!) – and going with the pro categories meant I got a variety of goodies. I’m such a cheat. Here’s the plates:
It was a tough choice to pick a #1 from both these amazing plates! My pick on the GF plate was the Chockfull of Goodness Pumpkin Pie – delicious cocoa crust with an intense pumpkin goo, topped with a fluffy frosting & a mini gingerbread heart! Yessss. I wouldn’t have said no to anything else on that place had I been offered again, honestly (with the exception of the fudge, which just wasn’t up my alley). I would like a chance to try a not-room-temperature punkass peppermint nanaimo too (tasty, but so goopy!). On the Vegan Classics plate, I was thrilled about the savoury options – it’s what made me pick that plate, really. While the sweets were nice (butter tart especially), the savoury were out of this world in taste and quality. While I loved the Kale & Daiya provolone scone (I hope Tori’s put this into rotation!), the pizza bun is incredibly flavourful so it got my vote – a tough choice. (And had me considering heading to TBC to pick up a whole one..) – I have seen a couple of winners/best in show posted, but I look forward to seeing all of the results.
After snacking, I strolled over to check out the presentation plates from each of the Bakeoff participants. I love how creative these folks get – after churning out all those samples, too! Dang.
After this look around, and saying hello to a few folks I know, and putting in my ballots, it was time to head out. I know that it’s fun to sit around and watch the judging, but I felt so crowded in that space – there were few chairs, and I ended up perched at the edge of the room behind a table – I felt pretty disconnected from the event, and even as I was heading out I found it tough to navigate through the blobs of people. I think some spaces designated for seating away from thoroughfares would make me feel more comfortable in sticking around in the future. My problems with crowds are always spoiling my fun 🙂
I look forward to the 7th Annual Fabulous Bakeoff! I hope as the years go on, people attending will become more aware of the event they’re attending and leave the fur trim coats & Uggs at home, though.. I know it’s cold out there, but that is one thing I would love to see the TVA address as an issue of respect going forward. It’s not much fun snacking on cruelty-free treats and having fur traipsed about, after all. It would be a great venue to distribute information about cruelty-free outerwear, and present the bigger picture of a vegan lifestyle to all attending.