Next a pandemic-fueled winter and spring of quick-flowing vegan food stuff news, the rapid rate of plant-based mostly bulletins proceeds this summer time in Maine.
Speaking of quick-flowing, a plumbing explosion transpired inside the all-vegan Robin’s Desk in Biddeford on July 22. The cafe was shut when it took place, and it will not reopen.
“I’m so unhappy and indeed, offended,” proprietor Robin Adams claimed just after the incident. “But I will move past this. Proper now, I will step again, acquire a breath and smile realizing that Robin’s Table was effective and appreciated. As for the upcoming? No idea.”
Robin’s Table very first opened in March 2020, just before the pandemic lockdown commenced, and the restaurant was then shuttered for far more than a year. Its destiny remained uncertain right until the conclude of April when Adams reopened. This summer time, like many restaurants, Robin’s Desk struggled to discover plenty of staff, which minimal hours.
“Ironically, my previous day of business enterprise was my most effective working day of organization,” Adams reported. “I ultimately felt like it was likely to come about. Persons observed us. I experienced reservations, cake orders and standing orders with two huge corporations for monthly orders. I was at the restaurant on Thursday doing my prep, and the plumbing pretty much blew out simply because of an difficulty in the building driving me.”
Adams reported a worker was making an attempt to obvious a clogged pipe in the adjacent constructing, and it resulted in sewage inside her previously clear cafe. Ended up she to come across a different locale, Adams stated she doesn’t know “if I can find the money for to go by the process” of opening the restaurant for a 3rd time.
There is no denying the closing is a reduction to the community vegan neighborhood. I wish her perfectly.
This summer’s other vegan news objects are rosier. For a person, in mid-July, Fred’s Fried Dough foods cart finally returned to the late-night Previous Port scene for the initially time given that 2019. New this calendar year on the cart is vegan ice product in addition to the vegan fried dough. The cart posts its site aspects at @fredsfrieddough on Facebook and Twitter, and @fredsfried _dough on Instagram.
Final month introduced information that the all-vegan Peace Ridge Sanctuary designs to open an equine shelter on 640 acres in Independence. The sanctuary desires to raise $650,000 to develop a horse barn and other important amenities. Ideal now, an anonymous donor is matching all donations, and if the sanctuary can raise $50,000 by October, it will be equipped to break ground before wintertime. Right until the horse barn is created, requests to take abused and neglected horses are stacking up at the sanctuary in Brooks, with no space in the present barns to dwelling the huge animals.
The very last several months have also brought news of a new vegan foods cart, a new vegan retail retailer, a new on-farm vegan cafe and a new vegan doughnut shop. Here’s a appear at these latest developments.
SOUTHERN-ISH Foodstuff CART IN CORNISH
The Greenhouse by SAO food stuff cart did a speedy test start in the slide of 2019, even catering a vegan wine tasting at Cellardoor Winery in Portland, adopted by a wintertime of scheduling and earning preparations for a significant launch in spring 2020. But operator Shelby Anne Oates’ programs for the launch of the all-vegan foods cart were being turned upside down by the pandemic. Alternatively, Oates took the cart back again residence to Atlanta, where she was born and raised, to serve her vegan comfort foodstuff throughout the unsure calendar year.
But this summer, The Greenhouse by SAO cart returned to Maine, with a residence base outside the house The Regional Equipment in Cornish and pop-ups at other sites and activities, in which Oates serves a altering menu of masala road corn, carrot canine with black bean chili, barbecue mushroom sliders, grilled cheese sandwiches, chickpea frittatas and pasta salad.
“You will unquestionably taste some of my Southern roots, I believe,” mentioned Oates, “especially in the staples I place on the menu additional generally than many others, like my SAO sweet Southern cornbread or my sluggish-cooked collard greens, but I also like to assist vegans get a resolve that in some cases needs addressing like a great charred and melty SAO grilled cheese. I’ve been serving up my BBQ Shroom Sammich a ton this summer, made with leeks and shiitakes typically, piled on a thick piece of grilled Italian bread protected in an SAO house garlic and smoked paprika unfold. It was a hit at the Ossipee Valley Tunes Pageant and will even be served up at a wedding I am catering quickly.”
The food cart has been popping up in Steep Falls and Kezar Falls and will be at Doles Orchard in Limington for apple-harvest season. Test social media (@saocooksandcatering on Fb) for weekly schedule updates.
Small LAD’S GOES RETAIL
Because June, supporters of Minimal Lad’s renowned popcorn and of its former cafes (the previous of which closed in 2015) have been flocking to Primary Road in the Penobscot County town of Corinth, wherever the vegan foods producer opened a modest retail outlet advertising its finish item line along with sandwiches, soups and scoops of up to 20 flavors of its Great Creme.
The new Very little Lad’s store is housed in a previous bank developing with outdoor seating and a drive-by means of window, in which prospects can select up phone orders. Minor Lad’s is very best-identified for its popcorn, but the retail outlet shares all of its much more than 100 items, such as granola, crackers and fruit tarts manufactured in the Popcorn Manufacturing unit located 250 ft down the road.
In the store, a complete rack is stuffed with bags of the signature popcorn in all its flavors. Fridge and freezer circumstances maintain drinks, seize-and-go sandwiches, veggie burgers, frozen dinners and Awesome Creme pints. The store also will make sandwiches to order and provides breakfast objects, soups and desserts.
“We also have some locally grown berries right now, and commonly some fruits and veggies for sale, much too,” stated proprietor Maria Fleming, who has not too long ago employed extra staff at the creation facility to preserve up with steadily rising need.
Fleming reported the store has been busy this summer time, with visitors stopping on their way to Moosehead Lake, buyers of past Small Lad’s places to eat earning a pilgrimage and locals swinging via the takeout window to grab lunch.
The Minimal Lad’s store is open up Sundays from noon to 6 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Fridays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Entrance-ROW SEAT AT FRINKLEPOD
In July, an outside cafe named Snagglebites serving farm-clean lunch opened future to the vegetable fields at Frinklepod Farm in Arundel. The shorter menu attributes plant-dependent bowls, salads and chunk-sized snacks. The cafe is open up Thursday via Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
“For yrs, we’ve been toying with the plan of giving extra lunch alternatives for the duration of the summertime,” claimed Flora Brown, who farms with her husband, Noah Wentworth. In the winter, the certified-organic farm sells geared up food stuff from its wintertime retail outlet, which closes in the course of the busy summer months time. “This winter season we took the plunge and purchased a utilised lunch cart which we have turned into Snagglebites.”
The name comes from the children’s e book “Uno’s Garden” beloved by Brown and Wentworth’s daughters and the source of the farm’s name. Supported by the farm’s professional kitchen, the cart extends the meals prep space out of the summertime industry place and will allow buyers to watch their plant-centered bowls and salads being organized.
“We recognized that preparing lunch right in front of our shoppers would enable them to see how it is built and with any luck , even encourage them to check out producing a similar dish at dwelling applying substances from our farm store,” Brown claimed. “We also required to lower the meals squander and packaging challenges that we have seasoned with hoping to keep our retail cooler crammed with geared up foodstuff.”
Most of the Snagglebites bowls get started with a rice-quinoa pilaf topped with a choice of baked Heiwa tofu, hummus or refreshing veggies (uncooked or grilled). This is drizzled with peanut ginger, barbecue or inexperienced goddess sauce (all created on the farm). A new addition to the bowl menu is the black bean bowl with tortilla chips and potato queso.
LOVEBIRDS In excess of THE BORDER
Mainers just can’t appear to get enough vegan doughnuts, and now the all-vegan Lovebirds Donuts in Kittery is planning to bring its wares in excess of the bridge and across the border to a shop in downtown Portsmouth, New Hampshire. The new shop will be positioned on the pedestrian-helpful Vaughan Mall.
“The Portsmouth site is significantly scaled-down than the Kittery area, much much more of a boutique, metropolis cafe, primarily designed for takeout service with a number of seats inside,” stated Tamara Monroe, who owns the small business with Ryan MacDougall.
On the weekends, Lovebirds on a regular basis bumps up towards the restrictions of the quantity of clients they can serve, creating growth the rational upcoming action. All the doughnuts will proceed to be made in Kittery, exactly where the kitchen area was crafted with the intention of providing various stores. Monroe states it normally takes seven minutes to get from the Kittery bakery to the Portsmouth shop.
Gearing up for the new retail place, Lovebirds has included bakers and is in the course of action of employing extra baristas, who will rotate amongst the two outlets. The new locale will offer the identical regular menus and on the web buying as the initial. This usually means flavors, like this month’s Hunneecomb, a brioche doughnut dipped in ganache, stripped with butterscotch and topped with housemade vegan honeycomb candy, will be accessible in both spots.
Monroe explained they hope to have the Portsmouth Lovebirds open this slide. Until then, look for their doughnuts at the Kittery store and Nectar Cafe, Grateful Gardens at Rocky Acres and Strand Cafe (all in York), as nicely as Copper Branch in Portland and Frinklepod Farm in Arundel.
Avery Yale Kamila is a food author who life in Portland. She can be reached at