We are firm believers that there are three elements that are key to a great summer get-together – drinking, burgering (can burger be a verb?), and grilling! During the recent heatwave, big plans for a park picnic were put on hold – but the desire to get our grill on was strong – so we improvised on a shady patio with a couple of frosty beverages.
Plenty Hard Kombucha
Inspired by the natural beauty and health-conscious lifestyle of the incredible west coast, founder Valli Manickam, began experimenting with handcrafted organic kombucha. In 2019, she added extra fermentation and the resulting extra kick created a natural and preservative-free alcohol beverage. Available in 4-packs of 355mL cans, Plenty Hard‘s 5%ABV flavours aren’t the same old same old offering Grapefruit + Hibiscus and Mango + Pineapple + Coconut. Added bonus – Plenty Hard is slightly carbonated, lower in sugar, carbs, and calories compared to other craft companies. Try over ice with mint sprigs – so refreshing! Available across the Lower Mainland.
Launched earlier this year by burger aficionado Bodhi Valentine. A tech sector pandemic layoff inspired an entrepreneurial culinary pivot and Burgerland was born. Mimicking classic burgers of big burger chains, each Vegan kit offers burger lovers the same fun, speed and flavour of their faves but plantbased. Kits include the In-N-Out-Burger-inspired California UP-N-DOWN, the Classic American Cheese, Oklahoma Fried Onion and Cheese, and Big Mac-inspired Big Smash. We ‘tested’ the BM box at our patio picnic and doubled it up for quadruple yumminess! Order through their website.
Touted by TIME Magazine as one of the Best Inventions of 2020, the Casus Grill is the creation of Danish designer Carsten Nygaard Brøgger. Frustrated after a camping trip with a generic disposable aluminum grill (which takes 200 years to biodegrade), he and his wife to out to engineer a single-use grill from cardboard and other sustainable materials. The resulting grill is an engineering marvel constructed out of lava stone, cardboard, charcoal (Quick Oxylite bamboo briquettes), and bamboo. After lighting the coals are ready to start grilling in less than 10-minutes. This little carbon-neutral showstopper will reach 600°F and stay blazing for at least an hour! Cool it off with a big mug of water and toss it in the bin on your way home. Order through their website or find at big box hardware stores.
#PlasticFreeJuly – It is a thing!
We thought that it would be daunting to create a patio picnic during #PlasticFreeJuly but at the end of the day, we had one piece of plastic – the hard plastic pack ring from the Plenty Hard – that went into recycling along with the aluminum cans. The Casus Grill went into the Organics bin and the Smashburger box and paper went into paper recycling and the small biodegradable containers were rinsed and put into the garbage.
- Helen Siwak is passionate about plantbased culinary, promoting a vegan lifestyle, shopping secondhand, and supporting eco-activists. Her plate is full as founder and president of EcoLuxLuv Communications (Folio.YVR Luxury Lifestyle Magazine, EcoLuxLifestyle.co). She is also the founder and co-host of V.E.G. Networking Group and soon-to-launch LittleBlack.Tee | firstname.lastname@example.org.
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