Starting August 8, a new version of the Vegandale Food and Drink Festival will take place in Toronto this year, and every Saturday and Sunday for the whole month of August. The new Vegan Patio Series event is a celebration held poolside at the sprawling 67,000-square-foot patio of the Grand Bizarre Beachclub Restaurant where festival-goers will be treated to a sit-down brunch and supper, bottle service, art installations, and music, a free Daiya ice cream bar, along with access to three infinity swimming pools (with social distancing measures enforced). Meals will be provided by vegan restaurants Ital Vital, Planta, Fat Choi, and Bar Vegandale.
Packages will be available for purchase for groups of two, four, and six and go on sale to previous Vegandale customers on July 16 and the general public on July 17. Seating will be reserved and food must be pre-ordered in order to maintain health guidelines. The minimum age to attend is 19—the legal drinking age in Ontario.
In 2018, the Parkdale neighborhood of Toronto was incorporated as “Vegandale” by vegan collective The 5700, Inc—the organizations behind the Vegandale Festival—as it housed a number of vegan businesses side-by-side, including Toronto’s first vegan brewery Vegandale Brewery, Danish pastry shop Copenhagen Cafe & Bakery, apparel shop The Imperative, retro ice cream bar Not Your Mother, diner Mythology (now closed), and a Toronto branch of Los Angeles eatery Doomie’s Home Cookin’ (now Bar Vegandale with a menu crafted by Chef Doomie). The neighborhood received backlash from residents over gentrification concerns prompting The 5700 to allocate $100,000 over a six-year-period toward community programs.
Regular Vegandale Festivals are still scheduled to take place in New York City (September 26), Austin (October 17), and Los Angeles (October 24), pandemic permitting. The Chicago Vegandale Festival has been postponed for the time being.