Last weekend I went to Portland VegFest and it was so cool! It was my first ever time getting a "Media Pass"... it felt so cool and so strange when vendors asked who I wrote for, and I said, "Myself! I write my own blog called Lipgloss and Spandex." It was a fun and surreal experience and I'm so grateful :) I'm lacto-ovo-pescitarian but am definitely interested in eating vegan more frequently for a variety of reasons, and I also dragged along my friend Ardara, who's currently going vegan! (#plantstrong #fartstrong). The event was held at the Convention Center and was huge!
Even if you have ZERO interest in being vegan at all, this is still a fantastic event. There's so many THINGS, from food to beauty products to household products... It's just cool to see what all is out there, and see how many amazing products there are that also happen to be vegan. For just $8 you get so many samples!
Oregon Brineworks was one of the first vendor tables that I hit up because they had naturally fermented ginger and pickles and beets. But my favorite product was the Real Ketchup. It was just YUMMY. They were just serving it with pretzel sticks, but you could tell it was GOOD.
The name and appearance of this made me a little nervous at first, but it's another super-delicious condiment that I loved. Harbor Creek Farms Cranberry Horseradish was the most amazing blend of sweet and spicy. Harbor Creek Farms was also sampling some of their frozen calzones and streusels--incredibly delicious vegan treats that just needed ot be heated up! I love seeing convenient options like these, especially when they're tasty enough that non-vegans won't mind eating them.
I had heard about savory teas and had been pretty curious but hadn't wanted to commit to buying a box of tea that I didn't like (been there, done that!). I was really excited to see all of the varieties by Millie's Savory Teas, ALL of which were delicious. It was about $9 for 9 packets of "tea" (which were salty like broth and had some calories)--since each packet only made about 8 oz of sipping broth, it seemed a little expensive per serving for my budget, but they were fabulous.
Whole Fusion is a powdered mix of seven different superfoods: Amaranth, Golden Flax, Quinoa, Spirulina, Chlorella, Chia Seed, and Brown Rice. I liked the concept of having all of these superfoods in one easy and relatively tasty drink instead of finding ways to incorporate all of them into my meals. I received a package to try and will be reporting more soon!
I've tried the Manitoba Hemp Hearts before and LOVE eating them in my oatmeal and smoothies. They add a nice nuttiness and texture to just about everything, including salad and other grains. I was very excited by their new line of Hemp protein powders. They were sampling one of them mixed with a bit of orange juice, and it was delicious.
There were also several vegan bath and beauty and skincare companies with tester products and items for sale, some fitness groups and products. I love 100% Pure (especially their Coconut Body Cream...) and Pacifica (their perfumes are delicious). But I was pretty much food-focused at the expo, since I really need to get back to eating healthy foods! It was a great all-around experience for checking out all of the fantastic vegan options out there. And you definitely get a TON of samples. I would absolutely like to attend Portland VegFest again next year. I really loved the open and welcoming atmosphere of the event.