Meat Free Monday at Pearl Oyster

As I write this, it’s almost 2pm on the final day of Vegan MoFo. Only 10 hours to go (in Australia, at least)! I planned to go out with a bang, but I’ve been busy and haven’t had a chance to cook anything interesting for the last few days, and couldn’t think what to write about today—but an unplanned brunch has saved me.

Vegan MoFo 2013 banner image

This morning I had to go for a blood test that required me to fast from midnight last night. Breakfast is my favourite meal, so I had to make sure I distracted myself in case I went into autopilot and started making porridge!

B, having taken a redundancy at work a couple of weeks back, is at home during the day, so he drove me down for my test and suggested we go out for breakfast afterwards. Well, there was a long wait at the pathology lab, so by the time we left at 10.30am, it was actually more ‘brunch’ than ‘breakfast’ and I thought I’d take him to one of my favourite local cafes for their Meat Free Monday.

‘Vegan friendly’

Pearl Oyster is a cosy neighbourhood café in Thornbury, Melbourne, (not strictly in MY neighbourhood, but not far away). It’s always busy, and with good reason. They have imaginative, but simple, meals with lots of fresh ingredients…and, while they’re not vegan, they are ‘vegan friendly’. (Although I’m usually not quite sure what that means!)

In Pearl Oyster’s case it means they actually understand what vegan means, and have more than one vegan option on the menu. And they also usually have at least one vegan cake, although I didn’t try those today. I’ve been told that the chef is vegan, so that might explain it.

Field mushrooms in red wine vinegar…and muesli

Today I decided against my usual (excellent) scrambled tofu, and went for (I can’t remember what it is actually called on the menu, but basically it was…) field mushrooms cooked in red wine vinegar, with garlic and rosemary, on toasted sourdough bread with avocado, dukkah and rocket.

Field mushrooms with garlic, avocado and sourdough.

It was really delicious—but huge! Even so, I was hungry and finished it before B could finish his muesli.

Muesli from Pearl Oyster

No, it wasn’t vegan muesli, but it could easily have been made vegan by leaving off the yoghurt (or substituting with non-dairy yoghurt, if they had it) and substituting the dairy milk with non-dairy.

Pearl Oyster is light, cosy and welcoming. It’s always busy with lots of parents and pre-schoolers, and people with dogs eating outside. As well as the indoor and footpath seating, they also have a large, leafy courtyard that is sheltered during colder weather (like today!). We were lucky enough to get a spot inside near the front window.

It’s great to see mainstream cafes offering Meat Free Mondays. They’re a great opportunity for meat eaters to try vegetarian/vegan food in a familiar environment—and are a real treat for us, as veg*ns, too.

Time for a breather!

So, that’s my final post for my very first Vegan MoFo. It’s been hard work, but I’ve had a great time ‘meeting’ lots of lovely new people and being introduced to lots of blogs I hadn’t seen before. In my hurry, there were too many blogs I DIDN’T get to read, so over the next month, I plan to sit back and read through all those posts I missed. Vegan MoFo just keeps on giving!

And now I will join my exhausted dog for a nice lie down (but unlike him, I won’t let my tongue loll out of my mouth). Enjoy your rest too!

Cocoa trying to sleep while I annoy him with my camera! (Why won’t my Vine embed? I had no trouble last time!)

4 thoughts on “Meat Free Monday at Pearl Oyster

  1. Congrats making to the last day of Vegan MoFo! I love reading about your vegan finds in some areas in Australia, I will have to keep your blog on my list in case if I visit. The dish, Field Mushrooms looks scrumptious!

  2. What a shame it is hard work because I’ve really enjoyed reading your Vegan MoFo posts even though they left me wishing I lived in an area where the cafes cater for vegetarians and vegans.

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