Project Food Blog #9: The Coup: Breaking Ground in Cowtown

160 comments

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Surrounded by acres of cattle fields, cowboy boots, and hay stacks, the last place you’d expect to find a thriving vegetarian restaurant is in the centre of a beef-loving city known by many as Cowtown.

Calgary, Alberta is known for their juicy beef and world-famous Calgary Stampede, but many aren’t aware of the vegetarian movement that has been gaining momentum over the past decade.

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Ten years ago, Tabitha Archer and Dalia Kohen met as 20-year-olds while slinging bacon and pouring coffee, perhaps an odd vocation for two long-time vegetarians, but a vocation that would serve as inspiration for a better future. With the world as their oyster, they would share their aspirations over steaming hot coffee and crisp mountain air, dreaming to one day open a vegetarian restaurant.

‘We all must eat, so why not do our part with social and environmental responsibility?’, they questioned.

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Like many successful people, their ambitions were met with criticism, concern, and discouragement from others; many thought their risky business venture would never make the cut. Tabitha and Dalia stood their ground believing that Calgary was now ready for its first vegetarian restaurant. They grabbed the bull by the horns- or rather, the weed by the root- and began a journey on a road less traveled.

Because sometimes, taking the road less traveled is what makes life truly worthwhile.

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In November 2004, The Coup opened its transparent doors, inviting herbivores and carnivores alike to experience their creative vegetarian fare and vibrant, hip atmosphere that supports local, whole, and organic foods. Much to the surprise of their critics, the community welcomed them with open arms.

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Their mission was simple, yet empowering: The Coup would be a space to gather, socialize, and meet new people while enjoying creative vegetarian cuisine made from scratch. Supporting local farmers is a priority and their unused food is composted for use as soil in their vegetable garden. To help reduce waste, customers receive a discount on take-out fare if they bring in their own containers and to offset their own waste, they plant trees every year with Tree Canada. Tabitha and Dalia also give back to the community by donating a percentage of their profits to local charities.

Now this, was something I could sink my teeth into.

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With my pen, tiny notepad, and camera in hand, I grabbed my two best taste-testing buddies and experienced all that The Coup has to offer.

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I was willing to eat as much as required to accomplish my mission.

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Dining on a Tuesday around lunchtime, we were quickly greeted at the door and seated by the large, front window overlooking a street view of monochromatic concrete.

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The concrete interior, however, was revived with bright paint and vivid decor, resulting in an unpretentious eclectic charm. Fun and unapologetic, this restaurant doesn’t try to be something it’s not. The walls are bursting with funky peacock blue and canary yellow, accented with local artwork and vivid, fresh green plants.

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Earthy green painted wooden table tops and matching wooden chairs pack the intimate and casual 40-seat room with a small bar at the back featuring a plethora of local and organic wines, beer, and liqueurs.

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The restaurant was about half full, made up of casual, cowboy boot wearing Westerners and laid-back hipsters from university students to the retired crowd. While snagging a table was no problem on a weekday, there are often long waits on the weekend due to The Coup’s strict no reservation policy.

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Our server, referred to as ‘Hell-yea’ on the receipt, was the shy and sweet hippie type with curly tussled hair whose big doe eyes lit up the room and enticed us with each of her favourite menu picks. She was patient with our questions and walked us through the small but varied and seasonal menu, starting with soul-warming drinks, leading us through small bite appetizers and all-time favourite entrées. I was pleased to find out that adapting vegetarian menu items into vegan fare was ‘no problem at all’, with Hell-yea winking her pretty eye as if she had done it herself a million times.

Something to warm our souls, the hot mugs arrived to our table in just a few minutes.

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The heavenly aroma of luscious coconut and spicy cinnamon floated through the air as the Coconut Chai Latte was proudly presented to our table with a knowing smile from Hell-yea.

Chai tea, almond milk, coconut milk, cinnamon, and a touch of maple syrup were steamed together to create a drink that was creamy on the palate, warming the insides as it went down. The whimsical and playful coconut was brought back to earth with the serious woody flavour of the Chai. With each sip I was transported to a sunny, tropical beach that made me forget about the snow, cold, and ice teasing me through the frosted window.

Well, almost.

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The short ingredient list of the Matcha Latte (steamed almond milk and Matcha green tea powder) appealed to my love for simple, uncomplicated food. The fluffy, green clouds intrigued me in a strange way, but then again I’ve never been one to shy away from green drinks.

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The Matcha Latte was offered with a shot of pure maple syrup as most customers find the combination alone quite bitter tasting, but I didn’t mind the lack of sweetener. While it was the complete opposite of the luscious Coconut Chai Latte, I loved its minimalist quality and how the sharpness of the Matcha was caressed by the creamy, steamed almond milk. It warmed and energized me without filling me up before the meal.

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Not long after lingering over our hot mugs, the appetizers came out at just the right moment.

We shared the exuberant Beatnuts Paté composed of mixed nuts, sunflower and pumpkin seeds, beets, garlic, lemon, kosher salt, dill, and olive oil. The Goat cheese, which is normally stacked on top of the paté, was served on the side for an easy vegan adaptation.

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Its vibrant deep pink hue was unexpected and inviting as were the crisp, fresh slices of juicy cucumbers. The paté was crunchy and thick thanks to the processed mixed nuts, but it wasn’t heavy due to the lingering sweetness from the beets and gentle tartness from the lemon, dill, and garlic. Everything was smoothed out with a splash of olive oil that made this unique paté one to remember.

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Other appetizers included the Sesame Yam Dip and the Sundried Tomato Hummus served with toasted organic Foccacia bread and blue corn chips (a substitute for the non-vegan lavash).

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Made up of yams, kosher salt, date paste, and pure sesame oil, the Sesame Yam Dip was creamy and smooth, but a bit too fruity and sweet.

The Sundried Tomato Hummus was a crowd pleaser: smooth and savoury with a bite from the garlic and sundried tomatoes. It went well with both the toasted Foccacia bread and chips, making this the favourite dip at our table.

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The entrées also arrived at the right moment, just as our conversation turned to thoughts of our next course. Eric and I shared the El Tacos that were made up of naturally sweetened beans, avocado, shredded carrots, quinoa, and salsa grilled in a sprouted grain tortilla served with a side of soy yogurt .

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The El Tacos are a creative and delicious take on traditional beef tacos. The beans were heated up with chili powder, jalapeno and chipotle peppers and cooled down with a touch of sweetener. The fresh shredded carrots and beets provided a juicy, crunchy texture and the quinoa and salsa mixture was an unusual twist that surely beefed up the tacos, making this dish one that you could easily share with another. The only thing I missed was a traditional crunchy corn taco shell packing everything in.

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On the side, Organic Hash Potatoes that were crispy, flavourful, and garnished with kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and chopped green onions, pan seared and seasoned to perfection.

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We also shared the Club Med Salad, a hefty portion of falafel, pickles, olives, shredded carrots, sundried tomatoes, sprouts, and banana peppers on top of organic mixed greens.

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Thick, lush, and creamy with a sharp, peppery quality, the Tahini Lemon Garlic dressing had me coming back for more and made eating a bowl of vegetables downright exciting. While the vegetables were plentiful and fresh, the falafel was lacklustre in taste and dry in texture.

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To wet my whistle during the meal, I sipped on fresh Cranberry Mango Ginger juice that was the perfect combination of sweet mango, followed by a kick of tangy cranberry and spicy ginger going down the hatch.

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Dessert was the only time we noticed the wait during our meal, taking about 20 minutes to arrive. I sampled the flirtatious Organic Chocolate Torte complete with a chocolate spelt crust drizzled with raspberry compote and garnished with mint.

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Rich, chocolaty, and moist, the chocolate spelt crust was the highlight of the torte. The chocolate filling, however, was tofu based and resulted in a strange, spongy texture and a dull, bland flavour that left a lot to be desired. Even the fruity and tart raspberry compote couldn’t save this tofu heavy pie.

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I would have loved to see this pie brought to the next level with a less processed tofu alternative. 

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Up next, a classic frozen dessert that we were all excited about: The Banana Split.

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A delectable show-stopper that made our jaws drop and mouths salivate, the Banana Split was made up of organic banana, peanuts, warm chocolate sauce, and raspberry compote on top of 3 scoops of vegan ice cream sprinkled with toasted coconut. The portion was large enough to share, but it was so delicious we wished we didn’t have to.

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The vegan ice cream was undeniably smooth and rich with a salty peanut crunch and a waterfall of cascading sauces, without tasting overly sweet or syrupy. The mix of warm chocolate and cold ice cream was almost sinful on the palate satisfying every greedy bite.

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The three of us enjoyed a relaxing meal together reminiscing old times and devouring mouth-watering, simple food. We finished our meal feeling energized and full, but not at all weighed down.

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Smiling and satisfied, our romance with The Coup was drawing to a close. Just as we were leaving, I spotted from the corner of my eye The Coup cookbook featuring The Coup’s most loved recipes of all time.

It wasn’t ideal, but I figured I could make a long-distance relationship work…

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As soon as I stepped off the plane, I walked into my kitchen and cooked my little heart out. I didn’t stop until I was covered in flour, beet juice, coconut milk, and other unidentifiable ingredients.

These are a few of my favourite dishes that I adapted from the cookbook (with permission) so you can experience The Coup in your very own kitchen! All of the recipes below are quick to prepare and incredibly delicious.

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I also made my own version of a vegan Chocolate Torte. I will be featuring a step-by-step post of the torte this week so keep your eyes peeled. Click here for a PDF of the recipes.

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The Coup’s popularity is exceeding expectations and its vibrant and creative cuisine- aside from a few soy heavy items- are breaking stereotypes about vegetarian and vegan food. Even celebrities like Moby and Casey Affleck have been known to pop in for a tantalizing bite. The service is down to earth, the portions are hefty, and the price tag is easy to swallow with entrées in the $7-$13 range.

Dalia and Tabitha are strong entrepreneurial women who have paved the way for vegetarian fare in Cowtown and have inspired those around them to discover a new way of eating that is not only delicious, but also friendly to our earth, animals, ourselves, and those around us.

I walked away from The Coup, with cookbook clenched in hand, feeling more inspired and empowered than I have in a long time.

Sometimes you just have to march to the beat of your own drummer.

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Yeehaw.

The Coup, 924- 17th Avenue South West, Calgary, AB., 403.541.1041. Hours: Monday: Closed; T/W/Th 11:30am-3pm & 5-10pm; Fri 11:30am-3pm & 5-11pm; Sat 9am-3pm & 5-11pm; Sun 9am-3pm & 5-9pm. www.thecoup.ca

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This is my official entry for Challenge #9 ‘You’re the Critic’ in Project Food Blog. Voting is now open! I appreciate your support. :)

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{ 160 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Camille December 5, 2010

Oh my goodness, that food looks to die for!
I wish I lived closer so I could pig out there :)

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2 Amanda (Eating Up) December 5, 2010

You look so cute in cowboy boots! That restaurant seems like a cute place to share a meal with people. Your chocolate torte looks incredible!

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3 Katy @ A Healthy Shot December 5, 2010

Love your descriptions of the food… I’m absolutely drooling ;-) And the cowgirl pictures are so cute!

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4 Kristina @ spabettie December 5, 2010

this all looks amazing, I can’t wait for your torte!! :)

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5 Roz December 5, 2010

Holy smokes, the Coup looks AWESOME!!! Next time I’m in Calgary I’m going for SURE! And as always, amazing pictures!!!!!

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6 Nichole December 5, 2010

I love this restaurant! It’s definitely one-of-a-kind here in Calgary, but it never disappoints! Even my meat-loving boyfriend enjoys it.

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7 Laura (Blogging Over Thyme) December 5, 2010

Great post Angela! I really felt like I got a great feel for the restaurant, ambiance, and food at this place. Loved your photographs as well! That beet dip is such a beautiful color. Of course, I will be voting for you, as always ;)

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8 Madeleine@ Stepping to the Brightside December 5, 2010

What beautiful countryside AND the perfect restaurant to critique. You make a cute little cowgirl, hehehe. Gorgeous job, as always! :)

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9 Red December 5, 2010

I am totally just about to pack up right now and head to Canada! That restaurant looks awesome and the landscape is beautiful!

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10 Gillian December 5, 2010

You’ve done it again and have gone above and beyond! So impressed Angela, you’ve got my vote!

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11 Mrs. Muffins December 5, 2010

What a fun restaurant! I love finding new places. I must visit Canada sometime…. I’m not too far, after all, here in Ohio!

xx

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12 jen at chocolateandginger.com December 5, 2010

Nice to see you had fun in “cowtown” :) The Coup is one of my favourite restaurants (and best vegetarian restaurant in town) and I go there a few times a month! My favourite recipe in their book is the cashew yam burger. I just wish they had their miso gravy recipe in there, its the best dipping sauce!

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13 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

I can’t wait to make that burger!!! Next on the list :)

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14 Maggie Muggins December 7, 2010

I second the yam burger, it’s hard for me to order something different when I’m at the Coup.
I haven’t been there in a couple months but your descriptions make me want to gather the troups and go for dinner. I’ve also been debating about getting the cookbook for a while.
I’m behind with your posts but did you get a chance to go to Gratitude Cafe in Kensington? It’s not as good as the Coup but they’ve got some nice items on their menu.

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15 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 7, 2010

I have not been to GC, but I want to try it out next time!

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16 Lauren December 5, 2010

You got my vote :)
I could tell how much detail, time, and effort you put into writing this post. Plus, the food looks delicious. The coconut chai sounds heavenly!

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17 Jennifer@ knackfornutrition December 5, 2010

Good luck on Round 9! I’m pulling for you!

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18 Brittany (Eating Bird Food) December 5, 2010

Wow – The Coup looks amazing!!

I’ll definitely be voting for you. :)

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19 Teg December 5, 2010

I live just a few blocks from the Coup!! It’s one of my favourite places to eat in Calgary.

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20 Kristy @ KristyRuns December 5, 2010

The Coup looks so good!

P.S. Angela, you take the BEST photos in the blog-world. Amazing. Simply amazing.

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21 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

thank you :)

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22 Liz @ Blog is the New Black December 5, 2010

AMAZING post and your pics are wonderful.

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23 Leah @ L4L December 5, 2010

This is the best entry I’ve read so far! So many wonderful adjectives! Love that you made some of the recipes as well! Can’t wait to see the torte!

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24 Katy (The Singing Runner) December 5, 2010

You made my mouth water by just reading this! You described the food so well, it was like I was there! I wish I lived nearby so I could try The Coup!

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25 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

i’ll be featuring lots of recipes from the cookbook on the blog….there are soooo many I cant wait to try out.

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26 Emily Malone December 5, 2010

Way to represent for the vegetarians and vegans, Angela! Great job! :)

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27 Ariffa December 5, 2010

You’re in my city, you’re in my city!!!!
I still haven’t checked out the Coup but I’ve heard very very good things, I think i might just go an order everything you talked about on this post =)

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28 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table December 5, 2010

The Coup looks so cool! Great review. I wish we had something like the here. Atlanta’s one “gourmet” veggie restaurant just went under.

P.S. I am digging your boots!

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29 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

those are OSGMOM’s boots hehe ;) well her clothes too!

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30 Gina December 5, 2010

Oh my, what beautiful and delicious looking food! My jaw dropped when I saw that chocolate torte ;)

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31 Lauren S. December 5, 2010

Angela, I was so excited to find that your post was on The Coup. I am a Calgarian and love that restaurant so much! I am glad you finally got to discover it and am pleased you enjoyed it as well!

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32 Jessica @ Dairy Free Betty December 5, 2010

Wow Ang,
What an amazing post! I didn’t even realize it was a foodbuzz one until I was finished, but I was thinking, this would be an awesome entry for foodbuzz hahahhaaa

I’ll have to check out this place next time I’m in Cowtown… and will test out your recipes for sure!!

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33 Kensy Balch December 5, 2010

Oh my goodness! The Coup is one of the best restaurants in Calgs. I’m from Edmonton, AB but going to the school out east in the states. Your last couple posts about AB has made me crazy homesick and appreciate the beauty of where I am from.

Angela, I adore your blog. You are truly an inspiring individual. Keep doing what you’re doing.

:)

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34 Jessica @ How Sweet It Is December 5, 2010

That meal looks incredible!

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35 bitt December 5, 2010

It’s a lovely combination when someone can photograph and write well. Very in-depth review. Good to know a veggie won’t starve in cowtown.

I love how you adapted the recipe with avocados! Well done.

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36 christina cadden December 5, 2010

Looks so pretty there!

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37 Charlie December 5, 2010

All this food looks amazing!

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38 Alaina December 5, 2010

That is the best review!! You should go into restaurant reviewing on the side ;-)

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39 Bria December 5, 2010

Angela, I love your posts because they talk about brand names and places that I recognize, being a fellow Canadian/maritimer and all :) I will definitely check out this restaurant next time I’m in “Cowtown” (usually once a year).
You’ve got my vote ;)

~B.

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40 Bronwyn Coyne December 5, 2010

Now I have somewhere for my brother to take me next time I visit him in good ol’ cowtown. :)

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41 Sierra December 5, 2010

Wow, Angela, you should be a writer! Your descriptions are amazing!!! Thank you so much for making so many things from spelt flour instead of wheat! Being wheat-free is a lot less hard thanks to you! Can you post a recipe for the tacos sometime? They sound amazing!!!

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42 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

thank you :)
They dont have the taco recipe in the book, but there is a bean type recipe I might try to adapt at some point!

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43 Allie (Nutty FlexitALLIEan) December 5, 2010

just made the lemon tahini dressing–omg delish! Good luck with #9!

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44 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

wow that was fast! ;) Isn’t it good? I have been mixing it with all kinds of veggies this weekend. A great snack too.

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45 Allison December 5, 2010

That meal looks amazing:):) And you had an excellent review! If i was up there i would definitely want to go! But since i cant, i am gonna go make your versions:)

I’ll be voting tomorrow!!!

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46 Ashley December 5, 2010

Loved reading this post after a fun day of snowboarding, sipping tea on the couch. :) You really made the food come to life with the way you described it and the photos were extremely vibrant. Great twist to recreate some of the recipes at home!! Good luck this round!!! :) xo

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47 Tiffany December 5, 2010

Wow! All of that food looks amazing! Congratulations for making it so far!!

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48 Averie (LoveVeggiesandYoga) December 5, 2010

“Sometimes you just have to march to the beat of your own drummer.”

Actually, I do this every day. I never set out to be this way, but I just am. I recently posted that to try to conform would be harder than marching to my own beat. Even tho it’s not an “easy” path always.

Ok I’ll shut up about me now :)

This whole post is awesome, starting w/ your boots and the pics of you ending w/ the desserts (choc torte!!) and the entrees and the sentiment, vibe, and loveliness that you captured.

Love the description of your hippie server, and also what these ladies are trying to do in cow-town. Build it an they will come, type of thing.

Excellent post, Angela! :)

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49 jodye @ 'scend food December 5, 2010

Wow, the Coup looks like an amazing restaurant. Every dish sounds downright delectable! It’s a shame that the chocolate torte wasn’t up to par, but the banana split surely made up for it. I am going to have to try my hand at some of those recipes!

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50 Lauren December 5, 2010

I LOVED reading that and every one of those pictures was phenomenal. Job well done, Angela!!

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51 Hillary [Nutrition Nut on the Run] December 5, 2010

Ange – you’re WIN this contest. Yes, you are!!

Food – beautiful!! You – adorable!!

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52 Leora December 5, 2010

I love the coup!!
I go there every week and am always so impressed with their services and food!!!
so glad you enjoyed it!!!

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53 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey December 5, 2010

Great post Angela – you’ve definitely hit it right on the spot. I could taste the food and know what to expect without actually being there, which is, of course.. the point! I also loved how you weren’t afraid to give constructive feedback!

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54 Cara Craves... December 5, 2010

Too bad that torte did not taste as good as it looks…

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55 lauren December 5, 2010

Angela,

I look forward to reading your posts regularly, but I especially do on the contest posts. I’m sure much work goes into each one but you make them look effortless and fun. I think you could turn me into a vegan.

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56 Healthy Chocoholic December 5, 2010

Wow!!!!!! That looks like an awesome place to visit!!!!!!!!!!! =D

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57 Leah December 5, 2010

You NEED to write a book! Amazing, awesome and awe inspiring post! Good Luck!

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58 Lana December 5, 2010

Amazing!! I’m in aww!…and so jealous of your visit there!! The recipes look amazing. I noticed you use arrowroot powder for the chocolate torte recipe…what exactly does it do?

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59 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

I think it helps hold everything together. I have not tried it without the powder though

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60 Mia December 5, 2010

I’m so glad you discovered this little gem of a restaurant. Love this place! Next time go for dinner and try their dragon bowl with quinoa and the tahini miso gravy! It’s amazing. They won’t give away the recipe for it but I’ve made my own version that came pretty close :).

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61 Hot Polka Dot's Mom December 5, 2010

Delightful post Angela and fabulous pics as always. I will not tell a lie though, I am a carnivore and absolutely LOVE Alberta beef :)

Judy

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62 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 5, 2010

you are certainly not alone ;)

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63 Bridget December 5, 2010

This is so FUN! And you are just about the cutest thing alive in that cowboy hat :)

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64 Potato Chops and Boneless Chicken December 5, 2010

Coconut chai latte hmmmmm, what an absolutely gorgeous meal. Sounds like it shouldn’t be missed if ever in the area.

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65 Christine December 5, 2010

What a great post! Beyond the talent that you have as a writer, it’s evident how much work you put into this review. Good luck!

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66 Jen Smith December 5, 2010

Crazy…I live right off 17th in the SW of Calgary and I’ve never even heard of this place. I have three roommates…one is a vegetarian and two of us are pescatarians so we’ll have to try that place out soon. I’m also psyched that you were in my neck of the woods, I love your blog!

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67 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

ohhh you will love it!

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68 Alicia December 5, 2010

What a colorful looking meal! I love the cowboy boots!

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69 Heather (Heather's Dish) December 5, 2010

you can just see the health in that meal…i love it! and i love the story behind it too; doing something different and off the beaten path speaks to my soul!

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70 Rhea (Greek Feaster) December 5, 2010

Fantastic work, Ange! You have my vote and support till the sweet (never bitter!!!) end ;)
I tweaked your Wedded Bliss Soft Ginger Cookies to make Vegan Gingersnaps for my papa. He likes crispy cookies so I swapped out 1/4 cup of the flour for ground oats (run through the food processor to make a flour) and baked them for 15 minutes instead of 10. Great success! I may have tasted one… or six… for quality control :) Thank you, as always, for the inspiration. You’re the best!

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71 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

haha thanks!

Thanks also for the tip about making them into snaps…I was just thinking about that last night wondering how I would try it.

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72 Melissa @ I Never Imagined December 5, 2010

Great post! I can’t wait to vote! Your chocolate torte looks fantastic, I look forward to seeing your post about it :)

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73 April @ Crazy Fabulous Life December 5, 2010

Wonderful post, Angela! I swear, I will be completely floored if you don’t win this thing.

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74 Ida December 5, 2010

I love your photos!! The coup looks like a fun place, with some great food. But I’m glad I live far away from all that snow:) Good luck in round 9- can’t wait to vote for you.

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75 Elizabeth December 5, 2010

Congratulations on making it to the next round of Project Food Blog. The Coup sounds like an awesome restaurant. Your description of the food made my mouth water. I really wish there were more vegetarian/vegan options for dining out. There is only one vegan cafe in Winnipeg which is doing extremely well in the short time it has been open, but serves mainly burgers. A restaurant like The Coup would be a welcome addition.

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76 retro sweets December 6, 2010

The Chai Latte looks good but I’m dying for the banana split and I can’t wait to read your Torte post! :) Really nice pictures and I love your cowboy boots! So cutee! ;)

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77 Jolene (www.everydayfoodie.ca) December 6, 2010

I will definitely be checking that place out next time I am in Calgary!

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78 Noelle December 6, 2010

Great review and pictures. So glad we got some recipes out of it too because I was feeling left out of your experience, LOL :) I think eating vegan is exciting and you have proved it even more. Thanks girl!

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79 Stephie December 6, 2010

Wow! We just need to open a Coup in Dubai! It looks fab!

Great job as always !

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80 Marina December 6, 2010

What a great post! I love the sound and the looks of the restaurant, and I would so want to try that food. Thanks for the recipes!
Can’t wait to see more of them :D

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81 Ester December 6, 2010

Love your writing! So evocative…

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82 Emily December 6, 2010

Great post, you’re pictures are always awesome. I could really go for that coconut chai latte…
I’ll be voting for you again! :)

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83 Maya December 6, 2010

I checked out the website for the Coup and I am majorly impressed! Especially considering the price range. It is more than reasonable. A very thoughtful and well presented review. Those restaurant pictures are stunning!

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84 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

I was really surprised by their prices too, esp. given the portion sizes that were huge!

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85 Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman December 6, 2010

Wow that food looks amazing. The Beatnuts Paté in particular is gorgeous. I want blush in that shade!

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86 Joslyn @ missfitbliss December 6, 2010

What a wonderful restaurant! I love finding vegetarian gems like that in unexpected places.

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87 traci December 6, 2010

I wish there were more places like The Coup. Everything looks so delicious especially that Beatnut Pate. I adore beets :) You have my vote ! Your pics are so cute :)

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88 Little Bookworm December 6, 2010

Amazing post Angela! The food looks amazing and I am looking forward to your own version of the chocolate torte. Good luck for the voting! :)

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89 Jillian @ Reshape Your Life December 6, 2010

haha I didn’t know this was for project food blog until the very end… I was reading the whole thing going “wow, she’s really getting into this restaurant, I like that… and she’s being really honest… that’s awesome! I really like this post… I want to eat there”.

Great job Angela! Can’t wait to vote!

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90 Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes December 6, 2010

That restaurant looks amazing. The food looks so healthy and delicious!

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91 Adeline December 6, 2010

Thanks so much for posting the recipes, these look delicious! Can’t wait to see the next challenge’s details, good luck! ;)

Also, can I ask what lipstick you’re wearing on that picture with your sister? It looks so lovely!

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92 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

It is a very old Clinique lip gloss from probably 10 years ago! The shade is Cherry Berry

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93 Adeline December 6, 2010

It still looks good to me, thanks! And after telling the family about your post, I think this beetnut pate is going to make an appearance on our Xmas dinner table..!

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94 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

i just realized how wrong it is that im still using 10 yr old lip gloss…lmaooo. i hang my head in shame. ill probably finish it and find out it is discontinued..

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95 Robyn @ Frugal 'n' Fit! December 6, 2010

This post is almost as good as eating there!

Almost ;)

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96 Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat December 6, 2010

This restaurant looks amazing! I absolutely love your photos for this entry – they are SO bright and colourful. Great job once again Ange! :)

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97 Melissa December 6, 2010

Great job on your post! One of the greatest experiences in my life was working for the COUP a few years ago. My world was opened up to a whole new way of living and taking care of one self. It was unfortunately was also one of the greatest regrets of my life as well. I walked away from Tabitha, Dalia and the COUP quickly and unfairly due to some things going on in my life at the time. I look back on that decision and the way I handed it with sadness. They are truly a wonderful bunch of people to work with and I hope that if Tabitha or Dalia is reading your post/comments they see this and know that I am truly sorry for leaving the way I did and I hope that there is a time when I would be able to sit down for dinner one night at the COUP and feel welcome with no hostility.

Once again Angela great job!

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98 Felicia (a taste of health with balance) December 6, 2010

great post! love how you recreated the recipes, can’t wait to make that chocolate torte!

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99 Eric December 6, 2010

Awesome job on the review, my mouth waters everytime I read it! The chocolate Torte you made was delicious! I’m hoping for your upcoming post about it, you’ll have to make another! :) I’m very impressed with your writing and photography, just keeps getting better and better!

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100 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

haha thanks Eric :) There might be more torte in your future! bahah

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101 Jennifer December 6, 2010

Angela ~ I just love your cowgirl outfit!!! I have a similar skirt (in black) and am thinking I need to get me some cowgirl boots so I can rock out like you!!!!!! Keep staying true to you! And sharing your zest for life with us!!!

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102 christyn @ All Ways Nutritious December 6, 2010

great job! thanks for the recipes…i love beets and want to try that one…and the dressing. great descriptions.

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103 Elizabeth @ elizathon December 6, 2010

This is a really good restaurant review! Nicely written, great photos…and it makes me want to go there and eat some of that yummy looking food. Nice job.

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104 Leigh Armstrong December 6, 2010

Love your stories Angela! When are you opening your own restaurant?!?

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105 Liette December 6, 2010

My vote is in, good luck..
The food looks amazing! I might try to sneak the chocolate avocado torte to my father in-law who love good ol’ home baking, see if he notices anything different…evil laugh inserted here :0)

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106 sippitysup December 6, 2010

Beautiful job. I have enjoyed this contest and you have been a great competitor. Good luck and terrific review. You really made get a feel for the restaurant and the countryside… GREG

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107 OSGMOM December 6, 2010

Very thorough, honest and well written restaurant review. I felt like I was there with you every mouthful along the way & that Banana Split is something I must try … and the photography … just breathtaking! You have given your readers a feel for Calgary, the healthy food/restaurant options that can be found in this City and a reason why Calgary is now known as the Heart of the New West :) Bravo!

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108 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

Thanks everyone!! Your support is awesome :)

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109 Kris December 6, 2010

Fabulous photos, excellent review and tremendous effort! I love the heart you pour into each challenge…It shines through! :) The food looks delicious. I must get my hands on that cookbook! Voting for you to the very end!!! Congrats!

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110 Preean @ A Teaspoon Of Turmeric December 6, 2010

Voting done and done! I just made Coconut Chai Hot Chocolate on the weekend, now going to try the latte!

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111 Preena @ A Teaspoon of Turmeric December 6, 2010

Voting done and done! I just made Coconut Chai Hot Chocolate on the weekend, but am going to try it as a latte!

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112 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

i hope you enjoy it, im absolutely hooked!

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113 Jessica M December 6, 2010

Thank you sooo much for writing this post! My husband and I are going to Calgary sometime this spring and I will have to check this place out! (We live about a 5 hr drive away from Calgary and haven’t visited yet).

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114 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

If you eat there for dinner I heard that the Dragon Bowl is the #1 dish. :)

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115 Heather December 6, 2010

Angela,

As a native Albertan, thank you for highlighing the fabulous vegetarian cuisine that Calgary has to offer!

I hope you have a chance to spend some time in the mountains!

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116 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

I was glad to! :)

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117 Emma (Sweet Tooth Runner) December 6, 2010

Just voted for ya! :D
I really can’t WAIT to see your step-by-step version of the Chocolate Torte! I will definitely be making that! :)

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118 Dawn December 6, 2010

Way to go, Angela!! Fantastic post, I just voted for you!! Good Luck!!!! :)

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119 Jen December 6, 2010

Girl, you need to write your own cookbook!

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120 Jenny December 6, 2010

This is a great entry! I love reading your thoughts, thanks for being so detailed! I can imagine every bit you say! : )

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121 Margaret December 6, 2010

Angela
Wow! – you have done it again.
Love the photography of Calgary – and your Western Outfit. You look so charming.
Restaurant and food looks amazing. Sorry I missed this place when I was in Calgary a month ago. Wish I had already seen this post and I would have been sure to check it out.
Good luck getting to the next and final round.

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122 Margaret December 6, 2010

Ops! Forgot to say I just voted for you.

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123 LG December 6, 2010

I’m in Calgary and have been meaning to go to the Coup for a while…now I REALLY want to get my butt in there!

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124 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

make sure you try the tacos and banana split…mmmm. the dragon bowl is also supposed to be great!

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125 Jessica December 6, 2010

I wish I could jump on a plane right now and try both versions :-) I’m always so inspired by the awesome and diverse foods on your blog- thanks so much!

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126 Shanda December 6, 2010

I’m sad to say that I live in Calgary and still haven’t been to this restaurant! I have heard many amazing things about it though, and based on this post I am going to go there this weekend because it looks amazing! Just want to say that I love your blog (its pretty much the only one I read every day) and that you have converted me to a semi-vegan diet that I am loving :-). I’m really routing for you in this competition! Good luck!

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127 Tammy December 6, 2010

love your blog and this post . amazing!!

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128 Natalia - a side of simple December 6, 2010

What a great place to critique! The background story is inspiring and the food looks delicious! Rock those boots, girl, you’ve got my vote :)

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129 Natalia - a side of simple December 6, 2010

What a great place to critique! The background story is inspiring and the food looks delicious! Rock those boots, girl, you’ve got my vote :)

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130 Laurie December 6, 2010

I’ve been silently following your blog for about six months now, and just joined Foodbuzz solely so I can vote for you! Your blog is so inspiring and down to earth. Thank you for being such a constant positive voice in a world full of negativity, especially on the topic of self image. I really hope you win the challenge. Good luck!

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131 Angela (Oh She Glows) December 6, 2010

thank you so much Laurie!

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132 emily (a nutritionist eats) December 6, 2010

Love this entry! You’ve got my vote!!

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133 Nicole December 6, 2010

omg!!! I am from calgary and right from the begining of your post with your title I knew you were gonna talk about the coup! Dont you just love it there?!!! I go at least once a week and have that cookbook:) You have to make the portebllo mushroom pasta with smoked tofu and Greek goddess-so good! And if you ever come back please try the tofu,yam and cashew burger. ahh its all good! anyways just thought it was cool how you were at my fav restaurant ,glad you liked it :)

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134 Hilary Hellum December 6, 2010

I wish that I lived in Calgary and could visit the Coup

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135 rachel December 6, 2010

wow that is some amazing looking food! that cake…..

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136 Emily December 6, 2010

So cute that your hubby commented on this great post! I am rooting for you…I really hope you win, I just love your site so much and have recommended it to so many people. I have been baking (and EATING!) a recipe from your site every weekend–just made the caramelized peanut blondies and they were the best thing that has ever come out of my oven. I was out of everything peanut so used toasted walnuts and half macadamia nut and half almond butter–YIKES THEY WERE SO GOOD!! My friend is getting lucky, I stuff myself silly on Saturday and give her what I managed to not eat on Sunday, she is getting some awesome food!!

I was just reading through your entry and for a second I forgot that you are vegan, but in a way that is so great, your food and great attitude appeals to so many people, and you are helping open up this amazing way of eating, and offer so many healthy alternatives that still appeal to an every day taste palate. I am so thankful for your site! I am an amazing grass, artisana convert because of you and can’t wait for your next posts and then to run to my kitchen! :)

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137 Joanne Cave December 7, 2010

You know why I love this post? Because I’m from Edmonton and I KNOW how hard it would have been anywhere in Alberta to try and find a great vegetarian restaurant! To put it simply, anything beyond meat-and-potatoes is a little out there. :)

Thank you for your wonderful posts – I love your blog, your writing style, and am so happy to have voted for you this entire way throughout PFB. I so appreciate a Canadian blogger being in the finals – I now live in the Toronto area and can completely relate to your writing. Thanks again!

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138 Krisine December 7, 2010

Your going to win Angela!! So happy for your success!

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139 Heidi - Apples Under My Bed December 7, 2010

Looks amazing!! Love their food philosophy too. Just voted for you :)
Heidi xo

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140 Lisa Orgler December 7, 2010

Beautiful! Great job as usual!

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141 Eva Y December 7, 2010

Just when I thought no one was going to do a vegetarian review! Thank you!

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142 Lis December 7, 2010

aw man! I cannot believe you were less than a block away from me! Aw…
I’ve never been to The Coup (despite the distance) cause my honey and I just can’t dish out
for dinner too often. But it looks amazing and it is a well loved place. Looks like you had a great time on your visit, which is wonderful!!

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143 tracey December 7, 2010

I hate that I don’t live in Calgary. We moved just when cool places like the Coup were opening. Oh well, reason for a road trip.

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144 Laura @ Starloz December 7, 2010

excellent review, well written

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145 VegSpinz December 7, 2010

I am salivating! Definitely need one of these places in my town! Great job on the post- will be voting!

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146 Courtney December 8, 2010

Hey Angela! Where did you get that super cute jacket, the while one you are wearing above? I LOVE it!

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147 Courtney December 8, 2010

* I meant white ;)

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148 Stay-At-Home-Chef December 8, 2010

Wonderful review that is insightful, well written and beautifully photographed. Will be trying out those recipes for sure! Good luck :)

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149 Sylv December 9, 2010

Wow!!! all of the food sounds soooo good, but the coconut chai latte!!!!!! I am definitely going to try make that this weekend :)

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150 Joanne December 9, 2010

What a beautiful post. So descriptive and the photos are perfect! Everything about your write up puts me right there in Cowtown at The Coup. I love it!

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151 Lori Lynn December 9, 2010

Another terrific post Angela! Sounds like a very fair review, I would definitly give the place a try.
Good luck in the contest.
LL
P.S. cute boots!

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152 Ritu December 10, 2010

Yay you won…Congrats Angela!!!!
You deserved it..wohooo…and good luck for the final challenge :)

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153 Halley(Blunder Construction) December 10, 2010

Congrats Angela! You have really struck a chord with the reader’s. Imagine having your own section on Foodbuzz for a year to enjoy all support!

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154 Stacey December 11, 2010

I’m so glad you featured this place for your entry! This is one of my favorite restuarants in Calgary (and I live there so I’m lucky that I get to go all of the time!). The beet pate is my favorite thing in the world! I hope you enjoyed your time in Calgary and thanks for showing the rest of Canada (and the world) that we’re not all about beef and cowboys boots! Good luck!

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155 Stella December 12, 2010

Hey! I just clicked over to your blog to see who the last three contestants are in the F.B. game (smile). I read your whole post, and just wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed it. It was so well written and covered in terms of photography, and I’m not just saying that b/c I’m a vegetarian. Really nice. Thanks, Angela.
And good luck…

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156 Charlotte April 16, 2012

Hey,

Lovely comments about the Coup, but it definitely was not Calgary’s first veg restaurant. Buddha’s veggie was operating long before the Coup, as was the Veggie House and Anpurna. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were others :) Just wanted to add the credit those businesses deserve :)

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157 Angela (Oh She Glows) April 16, 2012

Thanks for Clarifying Charlotte!

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158 Helen March 16, 2013

Hi Angela – thanks for this post! I’m interested in trying The Coup (I recently moved to a town just outside of Calgary), and it was great to hear that the prices are reasonable – their website doesn’t seem to list their prices. I’m sure you’ve tried Fresh in Toronto – is the price range similar? Also, do you remember what the vegan ice cream was made of? I can’t handle dairy/soy, and the banana split sounds delish! Thanks for your great blog – I have tried multiple recipes of yours and am always happy with the results, especially considering most of what I try is GF!

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159 Angela (Oh She Glows) March 17, 2013

Hi Helen, I’m sorry I can’t recall what the ice cream was made of, but I’m sure they will be happy to let you know. The prices seemed to be a bit lower than Fresh in Toronto (maybe?). Enjoy!

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160 Spencer @ Moo-Lolly-Bar November 26, 2013

That chocolate spelt cake looks amazing. I would so love to try some!

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