Monday, September 8, 2014

Questing in Munich: Happy Cow and panacotta

A sculpture, or me after a long day of questing?
This post is partially The Trew and Faithfull Storie of a Maiden on a Queste to Find Awesome Vegan Foode and partly an homage to Happy Cow, that website/app that helpeth the lonelie travelling vegan to findeth a vegan restaurant. (Yes, I do like the Olde-Tyme spelling too much. I'll try to stop.)
Since my first trip abroad as a vegan when I went to Italy, I've always looked up veg restos on Happy Cow. It's a very helpful resource because it has its own review system, so you can look up restaurant without even leaving the site and 2: it's in English, so I don't have to Google Translate a website to read a menu in garbled Babelfish-speak.
So on the one day I was exploring Munich by myself while my Mom was day-tripping outside the city, I decided to voyage forthe and finde a vegane restaurant. So I looked up the vegan restos on the Happy Cow app and decided I would go to the art gallery and then get a late lunch at Max Pett, only a 15-minute walk or so from my hotel.
Interior, Pinakotek der Moderne, Munich
Excellent plan! I walked to the art gallery, taking gorgeous photos on the way, and thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the gallery itself. When I was done, I plotted my course to the resto via a major thoroughfare and coincidentally passed a vegan clothing and accessories shop-which I would have if I bothered to look up stores on Happy Cow and not just food establishment, and which I would have gladly stopped in if it had been open. It turns out quite a few places close on Sunday in Munich!
 Vegan panacotta: worth questing for
Eventually I got to the university street that Max Pett was located on, despite my lingering frustration with overly long German street names (which pale in comparison to overly long and really similar Dutch street names) and then I couldn't the restaurant.
Okay, I thought, sometimes universities are quirky and roundabout and they hide entrances in the back of a building, or through a quad, or in the basement of a building that you have to walk through a music hall to find. So I looked--peering through fences, looking for signs, even walking into the foyer of what I think was a dorm, unharassed by dorm security probably because I was carrying a tourism guide and it would be too much trouble to ask me what I wanted if I don't speak German. I looked and looked and just when I thought I would faint from hunger pangs--since we know vegan breakfasts are often too light to sustain a traveller's miles of walking--I looked some more, adn realized I had to give up. I backtracked on this cute university street and as I approached the street I entered on, I saw the restaurant. It was cute and charming and not a quirky university resto at all. Problem was, it wasn't on the bock the map said it was. I would have found it if I had even glanced before turning right to follow the map. Ah, the challenges of exploring on your own! If I had been with my mother, she would undoubtedly turned left instead of right despite my clear navigation and I wouldn't have wandered loste and hungrie amongst the universitie's faire bildings.
But it was worth the quest: Max Pett serves up delicious vegan fare. The restaurant is a little hipster-precious, but when you serve the only vegan panacotta I've ever seen on a menu and it happens to be amazing, you can get away with a little 'tude. Even after a very long queste.

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