One Week till Cookie Con!

Desserts and Sweets, Food Adventures, Los Angeles

That’s right, folks. Los Angeles has a Cookie Convention and it’s coming to the Pasadena Convention Center next Sunday! We were floored by this news and quickly went to their website (lacookiecon.com) to get our tickets to this sure-to-be-awesome event. (I believe our exact reaction was “Cookie Con?! How did we not know about this?!”)

Reality TV buffs will appreciate the celebrity lineup of guests from Food Network’s “Sweet Genius” and Next Food Network Star, Fox’s MasterChef, and more. There will be fondant rolling classes, candy apple making for the kids, and demonstrations for new tools and equipment. But most importantly, the website highlights “hundreds of delicious free samples from national and local vendors, offering an extravaganza of cookies, candy, chocolate, coffee, ice cream, beverages, and unique baked savories too.” SIGN US UP!

Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies by our friend CCU at Go Bake Yourself!

Salted Chocolate Chunk Cookies by our friend CCU at Go Bake Yourself!

After our chocolate filled adventure at Indulge LA, we know we have to develop a game plan to synchronize our (precious and limited) stomach space and our (ravenous and unrelenting) sweet tooth. Luckily, we will be attending with a pair of friends with whom to share the bounty. I know Martin is going to keep an eye out for the best chocolate chip (his favorite) while I am always game to try unique variations on the traditional cookie (like our limoncello and semolina version).

VIP tickets are already sold out, so grab your GA passes soon if you want to attend the first annual LA Cookie Con! (Psst — sign up for their e-newsletter for a 10% off coupon code!)

As if you needed more convincing, a portion of the proceeds from the event will benefit Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. You definitely won’t want to miss out on this chance to stuff your faces while helping to support a great nonprofit. (But in case you can’t make it, stay tuned for our post-event recap with plenty of mouth-watering cookie photos!)

cat eated cookie

Disclosure: We were not compensated for this post; however, we did receive discounted press tickets to the event for the purposes of our review. All opinions are our own and were not influenced in any way.

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Welcome to Pasadena, Real Food Daily!

Food Adventures, Los Angeles

Restaurant openings are always newsworthy in the food-loving community, but when you get the rare opportunity to visit a restaurant during its soft opening events, it feels like there is an extra-special, electrifying sense of excitement in the air. I work with a few of the investors so news of this opening has been a-buzzing for a while now, and we were very excited to be invited to celebrate the grand opening a day early. Tomorrow (May 22nd), Real Food Daily will be opening to the public its third storefront, bringing fresh and healthy vegan cuisine to Pasadena in addition to the current locations in Santa Monica and West Hollywood. The Pasadena RFD is simply beautiful with its indoor and outdoor dining areas, wood finishes, vibrant green walls, open kitchen, and inviting bar counter. We were welcomed by hearty handshakes from Rob Jacobs and radiating smiles from Ann Gentry, the founder of RFD who has developed quite a following in Los Angeles for her focus on seasonal ingredients and 100% vegan menu.

We saw many familiar faces and of course, we couldn’t help but first admire the shiny, brand-new kitchen!

While mingling, we partook in the passed hor d’oeurves, featuring small bites that offered tastes of their impressive repertoire of all-vegan dishes. Some of our favorites included:

SEA CAKE Butternut squash, yam and sea vegetable croquette, pesto, sweet chili aioli. A wonderfully seared vegan “crab” cake, served with a smile. :)

(Left) NORI MAKI Sweet brown rice, shiso, tempeh, avocado, carrot, collard greens, umeboshi, tamari dipping sauce, wasabi, pickled ginger

(Right) WABI SABI ROLLS Cabbage, cucumber, carrot, mint, cilantro, rice noodles, rice paper, wasabi dressing

(Left) RFD Burger with cashew “cheese” – I’m sure it’s a great burger as an entree, but I especially loved the teeny tiny one-bite hors d’oeurves version.

(Right) Kale & Cuke (kale and cucumber lemonade) – it was so popular that they ran out of the kale puree sometime during the event!

(Left) All of the newly trained staff are friendly and genuinely excited for the new RFD!

(Right) Açai Berry Iced Tea – another delicious and refreshing drink option!

Of course, we HAD to try the desserts! There was an incredible selection; I think we were gawking at the display case for a few solid minutes before finally making our selections.

We wanted to try them all!

Mixed berry cheesecake – vegan and gluten-free, made with a tofu “cream cheese” and swirled with berry flavor!

(Left) Penny, one of the oh-so-friendly staff members, also hooked us up with the Apple and Raspberry Kanten – apple sauce thickened with agar agar and layered with dried cranberries and raspberries. For those with nut allergies, that crumbly topping is toasted walnuts.

(Right) Chocolate coconut squares and walnut truffle. The coconut squares are wonderful, and I don’t even like coconut! Martin tried the walnut truffle and enjoyed the soft center.

Our friends Cassandra and Brian surprised us with plates of more desserts that they were able to track down!

(Left) Moist chocolate cupcakes, one with thick “cream cheese” frosting and the other dusted with cute little sprinkles.
(Right) Assorted cookies.

It was a fun event and a fantastic opportunity to experience firsthand the passion that the RFD team feels for their product. We managed to track down Ann and all in all, we got the impression that she feels optimistic that vegan cuisine will be warmly received in Pasadena. We agree and think they’ll be very successful with this third location! If you’re in the area, be sure to check them out!

Left to right: Duncan Lemmon, investor and passionate vegan, Ann Gentry, Rob Jacobs, and us!

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Check out Real Food Daily on the web at realfood.com!

899 East Del Mar Blvd

Pasadena, CA 91101

Even though it’s a new location, visit their Yelp reviews!