vegan love in northcote

“i got your stash,” i whispered dramatically the moment he answered his phone. “come outside.”

i was parked on our driveway, picking him up after work on our way to pick up raven from day care on our way to drive to ferntree gully to buy her these sunnies i’ve been obsessing about for the last three weeks.

actually, i already bought her a pair online but the ones i got for her were a bit too big. i thought i was being practical by getting her the bigger size but then i saw how it was always falling off her face and i realized there was no point when they hardly fit her.

coughed up another $40, including straps this time.

geez, having kids is expensive! but she needs it, though, as her eyes are very sensitive to sunlight due to her intermittent exotropia. and we’ve been getting a lot of sunny days at the moment and summer’s right around the corner so she needs it now more than ever. anything for my baby.


i’ll try to do a proper review of these sunnies when i can. but first, i need to get jeff to do a photoshoot of her wearing them to justify my purchase to somehow soften the blow that i had to buy them twice.

anyway, as it was such a nice afternoon yesterday, jeff wanted to go all the way to northcote after to check out this vegan restaurant. that’s past the city, mind you. i wasn’t quite hungry yet even though i didn’t have lunch so i was down for it.

however, with the distance, plus the traffic, it took us more than an hour to get there. the whole time, jeff pointed out all these volkswagen golfs that he saw on the road, similar to the one he had just bought.

“ooh, look at that golf!”

“oh, look, there’s another one!”

“ooh, and another one!”

“oh, there’s even one parked on the side of the street! did you see that?”

“ooh, another one!”

when you hear those lines about once every 5 minutes because, apparently, there’s heaps of them everywhere, at some point it brings out the homicidal in you.

“jeff, enough already!”

but no matter how gently and softly i said it, the dude still got hurt. and of course, it was my fault. so for the next 24 minutes, we drove in silence. punctuated only by my directions on where to go because i was his GPS bitch.

i didn’t mean to be rude but in my defense, i did listen to him go on and on for almost an hour. all things considered, i deserved brownie points for sustaining my patience that long. it was just unfortunate that my patience ends where my hunger begins. and i was freakin’ starving!

i did apologize to him for my behavior, though. when we were about 10 minutes away from the resto. because who else will pay for my food?!

anyway, the place is called loving hut and i gotta say it’s so much better than madame k’s, in a sense that their meat alternative actually tasted like the real thing. as a meat eater, i daresay i have authority on making such an opinion. this one passed the test with flying colors as bright as a gay pride parade.

loving hut vegan restaurant, northcoteloving hut vegan restaurant, northcote

the restaurant itself was actually quite spacious. with that size, i’m guessing they get a lot of customers who want to make the world a better place and who love animals so much they could not stand to eat them.

i was just there for the food, regardless.

the first thing i noticed before i even got in was how heavy their sliding door was. the kind where you have to push manually, you know what i mean? that alone was quite a bit of a workout right there. 7 more reps on each arm and i swear my triceps would have gained some serious definition.

the fact that vegan/vegetarian folks can push open that door highly suggests that you can still be strong and buff, minus the meat. thus dispelling the whole “where do you get your protein?” issue.

it’s amazing how much i have rationalized because of that door.

loving hut vegan restaurant, northcoteloving hut vegan restaurant, northcote

i ordered chicken with vermicelli because it was rated 2 chilis on the menu and if you know me, i love spicy food! they didn’t disappoint. it might not have been as spicy as i wanted but all in all, it was perfect! AND, the chicken tasted like chicken. it is possible to eat meat without having to eat meat, after all. i just don’t know what it’s made of, though. the fact that i don’t know is making me suspicious it could be marinated cardboard but either way, it’s really good. if you ever find yourself at loving hut, try that one.

meanwhile, aside from helping himself to my food, jeff ordered fried chicken. it was really good too. crisp on the outside, hot and tender on the inside. so much so that by the end of our meal, we pretty much swapped foods already. also because i’m the type of person who hates food go to waste on account of the starving children on the streets my mom used to warn me about so i try to finish as much as i can. which is wrong. i know, because i watch all these documentaries about obesity and that scares the hell out of me too.

loving hut vegan restaurant, northcoteloving hut vegan restaurant, northcoteloving hut vegan restaurant, northcote

now that i’m a mother myself, i try to strike a balance with raven. it’s hard but you can only try, right? so i let raven eat as much as she wants without having to force-feed her and once she’s done with food and starts playing with it, i deliberately shrug it off as sensory play. it is a lot of mess and i do feel sorry for the staff so apart from apologizing, i clean up as much i can before we leave.

northcote, melbournenorthcote, melbourne

walked along the street and found this secondhand bookshop with a closing down sale. inside was a beautiful chaos of books, books, and more books! there were so many it was quite overwhelming, to be honest. i didn’t wanna leave without buying anything so i bought the alchemy of loss by abigail carter. at $12, it’s still a bit steep considering it’s a secondhand book but the old man looking after the place seemed really nice when we got to chatting about kids and how they grow up so fast. i can’t complain.

the strip also had all these interesting indie shops too. i was in and out of them just to suss them out and i was super glad jeff gave me the time to have a look around while he looked after raven. it was really nice of him.

so, would we live in northcote?

if we had $1.7M to spare, why not?

*raven at 1 year and 6 months old

13 thoughts on “vegan love in northcote

  1. Like you, I’ve tried vegan food here in Melbourne and sometimes it is a hit and miss. Haha, chicken that actually tastes like chicken sounds good! That said, I’m a bit wary of mock meat, knowing that it is processed, lol. I’ve been to Northcote a few times. Lots of nice cafes and indie stores like you said. But it is a bit too hipster for my liking – not my usual kind of crowd and so I probably wouldn’t live there πŸ™‚

    1. i still find it a bit on the expensive side, though, those shops. or maybe that’s just the cheapskate in me talking. lol. i did check out this op shop there just to suss things out and when i looked at the price tags, i was like, “uh, no thanks.” then again, they might have to raise their prices higher to be able to afford the rent.

      next time you go, try that chicken with vermicelli. you won’t be disappointed. i hope. hehehe.

      1. Lol, I am also cheapskate. These days going out for a meal in a restaurant is rare for me. Most of the time I also can’t finish a dish to myself (if you don’t share dishes) and then I think such a waste πŸ˜€ It’s sad to hear prices in op shops can be high. As you said, they might need that for rent and perhaps not many people come by.

        1. i know! i feel bad when i don’t finish my food so i try to finish it while secretly praying i won’t get obese from doing so. lol. i need to stop watching those documentaries!

          as always, yes to sharing a meal! works out cheaper and healthier, i reckon. jeff and i do it all the time. less guilt of eating out that way. although lately, we order 2 dishes because there’s three of us sharing now. i always make sure the food either of us gets is something raven can eat as well. and then she starts playing with the food and i think, “what a waste.” hahaha. you can never win, can you?

          1. Lol. For me I can’t finish food is because I have a small stomach and a stomach that can’t handle too much food due to medical reasons. So trying to finish a big plate of food is sooo hard for me XD

            Hehe. Everything is play to Raven, even food. Maybe you really should order a dish for her like a starter dish and she can have that all to herself πŸ˜€

            1. in a way, your medical condition can work to your advantage too: you’re more apt to listen to your body and not overeat, which is exactly what the rest of us would be doing during christmas season. or maybe just me?

              kiddie meals come in large portions, believe it or not. like, i can eat it and i’d be full! and i’m an adult! also, i notice that most of the meals catered to kids are fried — chicken nuggets, chips, etc. so i’d rather order something relatively healthy that she and i can share.

            2. Lol. If I eat too much or carelessly eat the ‘wrong’ foods, that’s when my medical condition flares up πŸ˜€ I do notice that in general, my portions are always smaller compared to other’s. So maybe I am just an all round small eater.

              Yes! Kiddie meals can make me full too! At some places I’d order the kids fish and chips and it would be the perfect portion. And nuggets! I wish adult meals would come with more nuggets.

  2. she looks adorable with those sunnies! what is intermittent exotropia? place looks neat like the kind that would serve only veggies lol. way krispy pata for sure. i miss booksales. i miss books in general. i havent had time to read lately. I come across a book i so want to read and end up piling them on the shelf. haha. there’s even this one book that’s left open to where I stopped reading and got shoved up the same shelf. i always forget to close it. until now open pa sha didto. hahaha. i miss my single self BUT I love that Andrew is around so I’m not one to complain. 1 year and 6 months huh? Big girl na!!! πŸ™‚

    1. ako sad. wa na sad ko time mobasa jud. kutob ra intawn ko palit ug libro hoping that i’d get to read all of them soon. nagtipun-og sad akong mga libro dinhi.

      intermittent exotropia is when one eye moves involuntarily to the outer side while the other stays fixed at an object. it usually happens when she’s looking at a distance or daydreaming. opposite sa libat ba. it’s actually a form of strabismus sad. mao jud na akong concern ni raven karon ai. but otherwise, she’s a healthy kid. malipayon kaayo.

        1. the doctor just advised us to get her to do eye exercises through play. she’s too young to do vision therapy at this age, which is the route i wanna take. it’s like rehab for the eyes. surgery would be my last option.

          yeah, malingaw sad ko ug dress up niya. mao na if cute gani iyang outfit, aw, photoshoot jud dayon kay sayang ang effort sa inahan! lol.

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