5x Vegan Hotspots in Como, Italy

 

When you think of Italy you think of passion, pasta, the movie Eat Pray Love, espresso’s and of course gelato, lots and lots of gelato. You might think that it’s hard being vegan in Italy. But let me tell you, although I might get an occasional look from an old italian lady when I ask for soya milk in my coffee, it’s actually not hard at all. I fell in love with Como a long time ago and have discovered lots of amazing places over time where you can enjoy some amazing vegan food. These are a few of the hot spots that you have to check out when you next visit this beautiful town.

 

Ice cream

Let’s start with my obsession first, ice cream! My favorite spot for ice cream is hidden in one of the tiny streets on the lake called ‘Vanilla Bio’.

Vanilla Biois a small shop in which they only sell organic and vegan ice cream. All flavours are freshly homemade and absolutely delicious. It fulfills all your Italian gelato dreams and you won’t even feel guilty afterwards! Imagine a crispy cone with their best flavours, Coconut and Chocolate. So creamy, so flavourful and as they are based with coconut milk they don’t taste like a sorbet but actually like full creamy ice cream.

 

Pizza

There are many great spots to find a delicious pizza in Como, after all its Italy. However, it’s usually at the less beautiful places that you can find the best authentic food. One of those places which also happens to be my favorite spot is called ‘Pizzeria Da Benito.

Pizzeria Da Benito has the best vegan Neapolitan pizza. I always order the Marinara which is an ultimate classic. The pizza has a crispy crust, as you take a bite you can hear the crust break and white flower dust remains on your fingers. The tomato sauce is so rich, you can taste the freshness of each ingredient. And even though there is lots of sauce the bread remains crispy. It has the perfect balance of textures and flavours. For me this is THE spot for the ultimate pizza.

 

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Coffee

Como is beautiful and within it’s cosy streets you will find lots of amazing cafes. However, these are a few of my favourites. ‘Posta is a cafe which belongs to the hotel ‘Pasta Design Hotel‘ which is located in one of the main squares. It has a lovely terrace where you will overlook the square so you can sit down, enjoy the most amazing coffee and do some people watching.

My second favourite spot is called ‘Loft. If you want to enjoy a coffee with a view then this is THE place to go to. It has the most beautiful view overlooking the houses with the mountains in the background on one side and with a view over the church on the other. You can hear the church bells in the background as you sit in the sun enjoying the Italian lifestyle.
If you are looking for a very Italian type of cafe then you have to visit ‘Pane e Tulipani’. This cafe sells the most amazing espresso as well as beautiful flowers – it’s both a cafe and flower shop. It’s hidden in one of the small streets where you can sit outside on the terrace and watch people go by as you enjoy your espresso in the sun.

 

 

 

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The best vegan ice-cream on the lake in Como, Italy.

 

When you’re in Italy you can expect to be finding yourself stuffing your face with ice-cream, lets be honest here. My diet has consisted of espresso’s, pasta and ice-cream in the last few days and apart from going for that extra run I feel great! Being vegan in Italy has always been seen as a very difficult task. But that’s not always true. I have been going to Italy for quite a while and have found some amazing Italian meals that even I can order in a restaurant or cafe. Nevertheless, I have recently discovered an ice salon which is now one of my favourite spots in Como.

 

What I like

In a small side street you will find a spot named Vanilla BioVanilla Bio is an ice salon which only sells vegan and bio ice-cream. Two bubbly girls make you try all the flavours you want and make you even more indecisive as everything you taste is as good as the other. However, if you want to dulge in delight you have to try two of my favourite  flavours, ‘coconut’ and ‘chocolate’. They are both vegan and absolutely delicious. Imagine a crispy cone with the most creamiest and flavoursome ice-cream, all plant based.

When you visit Como you can’t miss out on this spot, and trust me you wont be returning just once.

 

Where to go

They are open everyday and the address is Via fontana 15 in Como, Italy.
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Leroy’s – A hidden gem in the form of the trendiest Vietnamese restaurant

 

Let me start with the fact that I immediately fell in love with this place the moment I walked in. The smell of fresh ingredients and spices fill the room and even finds it way to the outside porch. You can immediately feel the amazing atmosphere and this has 100% been created by the lovely owners. You can feel their passion and love in both the restaurant and the food.

Leroy’s is now one of the trendiest places in Canggu and the must go to in the weekend for the most delicious pho and a cocktail with your friends! It’s almost as if this spot has become the place to fall in love with both it’s food and with each other as the mood in this restaurant is so uplifting and exciting.

 

 

What I love

They recently renewed their menu which also meant, more vegan deliciousness!

Starter

Lets start of with the ‘Vietnamese taco’s‘ (60k Idr/ 3.20 Gbp), they truly are a vegan delight. They are made with tempura eggplant, fragrant slaw, herbs and a homemade Sriracha. It’s the most fresh ingredients combined to make the ultimate crunch.

Another amazing starter is the ‘Rice paper rolls with peanut tofu satay‘ (45k Idr/ 2.40 Gbp). It’s refreshing and perfect for a hot day in Bali. My favourite part of this dish is the peanut sauce, I mean.. it can’t get any better than this. (Sometimes I like to order some ‘sweet potato fries’ and just dip them in the peanut sauce, naughty but oh so yum!!)

Main

My absolute favourite main course and one of the reasons why I came here so often is for the ultimate ‘Mushroom and Bok Choy Pho‘ (60k Idr/ 3.20 Gbp). This Pho is served with a side of Sriracha, hoisin sauce, raw bean sprouts, chopped chili, lime, mint and basil. You can decide how spicy, fresh or sweet you want your Pho to be by just adding the ingredients yourself. It’s an extremely nutritious meal and an absolute winner when it comes to flavour.

Another great meal for main or even for lunch is one of their great salads. My favourite is the ‘Vermicelli bowl with grilled tofu satay‘ (60k Idr/ 3.20 Gbp) This salad is made with avocado, zucchini, radish, edamame, pickles, cucumber, iceberg, slaw, herbs and served with spring rolls. It’s so refreshing, so colourful and so delicious. It’s full of flavours, textures and an ultimate must try when you visit Leroy’s.

Desert

However, now it’s time for the grand desert. Im not having the “I’m so full from my started and main” excuse, because you will regret not having tried the desert of deserts! To finish of your amazing dinner and to just put the cherry on top you have to try the ultimate delight. This is heaven in the form of a ‘Vegan Chocolate Brownie‘ (35k Idr/ 1.85 Gbp). It’s everything you want a brownie to be. It has a slightly crispy outside but as soon as you put your spoon through you can feel it’s gooey centre. The chocolate is so rich and you would never (ever) of guessed that this is actually vegan. Trust me, you’ll be able to fool anyone! So yummy! (One of my favourite deserts in the whole of Canggu – and yes I have thought of coming there late at night just for the desert, guilty.)

 

 

Where to go

Leroys has recently announced that they will be open for lunch too! Woohoo!

They are now open everyday from 11am- 12am and their address is Jl. Tanah Barak No.43 in Canggu.

Enjoy!

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Monsieur Spoon – The cutest coffee spot

 

Monsieur Spoon is a bakery in the middle of Canggu with a French twist. Sometimes when you are far away from home it’s nice to have a little bit of a homely feeling. And what is a better way to get a taste of home then through food. 

As soon as you enter the bakery you can smell the fresh coffee being made. Fresh croissants are taken out of the oven, and if you are lucky you might be in time to get a taste of their very special black croissants. Everything about this place will make you feel at home and it’s the ultimate spot to relax and take a break by enjoying a delicious cup of coffee. 

 

 

What I like

I come here very often just for a cup of coffee. As a coffee freak I have been on a hunt for the best coffee in Canggu. I have tried many cafes and Monsieur Spoon is definitely in my top 3! I always order a ‘Cappuccino‘ with soya milk (35k Idr/ 1.80 Gbp). The coffee is fruity and strong. Also, most importantly it’s not at all bitter or watery – and that’s the way I like it! (And that’s the way it’s also supposed to be) So I can honestly say “This is one of my favourite coffee spots in the whole of Bali!”. 

Breakfast

They also have delicious freshly made cold pressed juices which are full of vitamins and their ‘Green detox‘ (40k Idr/ 2.10 Gbp) juice is amazing in the morning. However, when I’m at a French cafe I like to go for a traditional ‘Orange juice’ (30k Idr/ 1.60 Gbp) which is made out of 100% fresh and sweet oranges.  If you are staying for breakfast then you might as well have the ‘Avocado Bruschetta‘ (55k Idr/ 2.90 Gbp) which is a chunky piece of bread with smashed avocado, cherry tomatoes and topped with coriander – healthy, delicious and a great way to start the day! 

Lunch

For lunch I love getting the ‘Gazpacho‘ (40k Idr/ 2.10 Gbp). It’s made with fresh tomatoes and served with chunky bread. It’s extremely refreshing which is perfect for on those hot Bali days. 

However, what I mostly do is grab a cappuccino and some of their delicious freshly made bread and be on my way home! The bread is made daily and is a real treat for a breakfast lover like me! 

 

 

 

Where to go

Monsieur Spoon is located on Jalan Pantai Batu Bolong No.55 in Canggu and it’s open everyday from 6.30 am- 9pm. 

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Cheeky smoothies and vegan deliciousness at Betelnut Cafe

 

Imagine a cafe with a hut like feeling, bamboo, wood and tropical green surrounded by Bali’s palm trees. I personally love going to this cafe because of it’s buzzing atmosphere, it’s loving people but especially for it’s delicious vegan food. This menu is so vibrant and will make any non-vegan turn vegan in no-time.

 

What I get

Lunch

My two ultimate favourite salads are both the ‘Veggie patch‘ (50k Idr/ 2.60 Gbp) and the ‘Raw Gado Gado‘ salad (45k Idr/ 2.60 Gbp). The ‘Veggie patch‘ is made with roasted pumpkin, beetroot, rucola, shallots, cashews and spinach. You can only imagine how many textures, flavours and colours make up the perfect summery salad. However, the ‘Raw Gado Gado‘ salad is a must try. It consists of spinach, rucola, cabbage, tofu, tempe, carrot, coconut, cucumber, sprouts and tomato which is then topped off with a deliciously home-made peanut sauce. This is the ultimate Balinese salad, which is refreshing and bursting with flavours.

 

 

Dinner

If I’m in for a real treat I usually get the ‘Veggielicious burrito‘ (50k Idr/ 2.60 Gbp) or the ‘Veggie burger‘ (50K Idr/ 2.60 Gbp). The ‘Veggie burger‘ consists of a home-made vegetable patty with fresh greens, slaw and tomato relish in a toasted wholewheat bun. I personally have tried many vegan burgers in the last years and I have to say that this is definitely one if the best ones, especially in Canggu.

Snacks

At Betelnut Cafe they have the most delicious juices and smoothies. My favourite smoothie is one (which is a bit of a cheeky one) called the ‘Chunky Monkey‘ (40k Idr/ 2.10 Gbp). It’s made with banana, cashew butter, dates, flax seeds, muesli, ginseng, maca, cacao and coconut milk. Trust me, the cheekiest but best smoothie you’ll ever taste! Another smoothie that is absolutely delicious is called ‘Nutters‘ (40k Idr/ 2.10 Gbp). If you are a real nutty lover like I am you will love this one! It’s made with almond milk, cacao, dates, cashews, coconut, ginseng, maca and flax seeds – healthy, yummy and a real treat!

 

 

Where to go

Betelnut Cafe is open everyday from 8am- 10pm and their address is Jl. Pantai Batu Bolong No.60 in Canggu.

 

 

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Pizza with a view, Lake Como

 

I will let you in on a little secret. When I first came to Lake Como to visit my boyfriend he took me on our first date to a very special place. On a summery night we drove past the lake to a destination that had the most beautiful view. On one side of the road you would overlook the water and the beautiful mountains, on the opposite side you would find a small square in which there were 2 restaurants, an ice cream parlour, a fountain and girls in cute dresses laughing and chasing each other in circles.  Its a dream destination, like you are playing in an old Italian movie.

 

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You walk into the movie scene and sit down, yet to find out you are about to experience something extraordinary. Your fairy tail experience is about to become even better! At the restaurant named La Piazzetta they serve the absolute dream pizza. You are about to take a bite into a slice with crispy thin dough, topped with the most fresh and flavoursome tomatoes, sprinkled with fresh basil that smells so strong the scent remains on your fingers. Isn’t it magical when your eyes close to take in the flavours, but when you open them again and look over the mountains the magic continues.

 

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La Piazzetta Argegno
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La Piazzetta Argegno
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La Piazzetta Argegno

 

La Piazzetta is my absolute favourite pizza restaurant. For the people that like to take their loved ones on a date, this is definitely the place to go! ( It definitely worked on me!!)

 

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Where to go

La Piazzetta is open everyday from 12pm – 12am and their address is Piazza Roma, 6/8, 22010 Argegno in Como.

 

 

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