Call it a milestone or a checked box on my bucket list. It overlaps both categories.
I attended my first vegan meetup. To clarify… it’s my first meetup of any kind.
Providing some context here: During the past few months I’ve creeped on several inspiring vegan Instagram accounts. I’ve read details and drooled over many meetup pictures that included spring rolls, cheeseburgers, pizza slices, and acai bowls from vegans worldwide. The positive vibes from these meetups were fairly infectious, for lack of a better word. Also, I could hardly handle the perfectly styled picnics and food photos with the carefully positioned flower petals, scattered board games, and exotic destinations.GOALS! Am I wrong? I had to experience a meetup for myself.
By some magical coincidence, I found this site called (appropriately so), Meetup. I was able to find my plant-based people. Not only that, but I checked off some other interests to get suggestions to creative writing groups, yoga sessions, hiking trips, sketch crawls, and boating expeditions. (I’ll do a post about this platform, because Meetup has changed my life a little bit.)
To get back to the point, I RSVP’ed on Meetup to eat a buttload of vegan pizza at Paulie Gee’s Short North from 6-8pm this past Wednesday night. It wasn’t only to get great food photos, because, let me tell ya, I love me some food photography.
No. I went for the opportunity to reach out to the local vegan community and eat my way around the city I was born in.
After all, someone unknown to me, but definitely much more famous than myself, said the following:
The meetup was (not really) hitting four birds with one stone.(Watch out birds!) It was a chance to eat pizza, meet more people in the vegan community, find my way around Columbus, and actually get out for a meetup overall. It was awesome, even if I was a bit anxious to go at first. Dude, not gonna lie, trying new things and being in new social situations is scary. No regrets whatsoever. It was worth it.
What Did I Eat?
Vegan Supreme Pizza
House Red Sauce, Garlic, Crimini Mushrooms, Red Onion, Sautéed Vegan Breadcrumbs, EVOO, Post-Oven Cashew Milk Ricotta
There were also complementary vegan chocolate chip/cherry brownies from The Angry Baker on King Avenue in Columbus. They were a gift to our group from Paulie Gee’s manager. Damn… they were good. Moist (again, lack of a better word), packed with chippies, and better than childhood Betty Crocker brownies by a thousand-fold. My non-vegan family members agreed while sipping their ginger beers.
Photo Credit: Kaylyn Rhoads
Funny thing. It was $15 for a 12-inch pizza. But due to an arugula incident, I got another huge Vegan Supreme Pizza for free. The staff apologized for putting arugula on the pizza (arugula not pictured) and asked if I wanted to send the pizza back.
Ah heck no!
I know where this perfectly digestible pizza is going. Mah belly!
How Many People Were There?
Thirty people showed up. However, I think more people ended up dropping by and had plus-ones. The place was packed. Props to the staff that were working their butts off for hours to feed all of us in addition to all their usual Wednesday evening crowd. Despite the busy environment, we all got excellent pizzas and stellar service.
I’m including the menu link for just the Short North location. There’s plenty of non-vegan pizzas The verdict? Awesome combo for the Vegan Supreme. At this point, they have a lot of potential to branch out with their ingredients and truly create some groovy new combos at this location. This was exactly Paulie Gee’s plan during the meetup, as they were baking up some off-menu pizza ideas for the group. Unfortunately, I had to skedaddle before the brand spanking new slices came around. Parking meter, why?
Am I going back?
The bird says yes, and she’s bringing more friends.
Photo Credit: Kaylyn Rhoads