Thursday, 11 October 2018

Conference Food: Science Week (bonus Eating Out: Kuan Yin)

The second conference I went to was for Science Week, a three to four day vet conference held down at the Gold Coast. I attended two days, a feline masterclass day on the Wednesday and the feline stream on Thursday, the first day of the conference proper. Despite being near so much amazing vegan food, breaks weren't long enough so I had to rely on the conference.

I should mention that any time I go to a conference, I am fully stocked with noodle cups, bananas, and snack bars. I take no risks in going hungry.

Morning tea came around on the Wednesday and there was nothing marked vegan. Sigh. I found a catering person to ask, and was directed to something amazing. A strawberry danish! That was vegan! For some reason, instead of putting a vegan sign on them, they just put them on a black slate tray. Surrrrrre... Anyway, no complaints.

Morning Tea - Strawberry Danish at Science Week QT Hotel

Morning and afternoon tea were catered just to our small feline masterclass, but for lunch they sent us down to the main restaurant. Two years ago, at the same masterclass and the same venue, the vegan option was literally salad and fruit. This day, I was directed to a designated area that had pad thai, fried rice, roasted vegetables, and the ubiquitous salad. Plus little vegan strawberry and chocolate tarts! I filled my plate, and went back for seconds on the pad thai and vegetables, plus a few more sneaky tarts.

Lunch - Salad, steamed vegetables, fried rice, pad thai, and chocolate strawberry tart at Science Week QT Hotel

Afternoon tea was a couple of gorgeous apple muffins. I was so full from lunch, I only ate one. But took the other one home with me to freeze for a future work snack.

Afternoon tea - Apple muffins at Science Week QT Hotel

On Thursday, the full conference had started, so morning and afternoon tea were on the main conference floor with a lot of people milling around. I was hopeful after Wednesday, and I was not disappointed. Apricot danishes! So great to see a venue realise that vegans love pastry, and that you can buy vegan pastry really easily, and make delicious morning teas for vegans! I 100% ate four of these.

Morning Tea - Apricot Danishes

Lunch down at the restaurant was a little more disappointing this time, though still filling. Vegan options were ratatouille (which was oddly spicy, and I had to carefully scoop around giant chunks of capsicum when serving myself), and some bland polenta. And salad, of course. Thankfully, they still had the chocolate strawberry tarts, as well as a lovely fruit plate, so I sugared up! Those chocolate strawberry tarts were soooooo good.

Lunch - Salad, Polenta, Stewed Vegetables at Science Week QT Hotel

Afternoon tea was a little confusing, as they had some things labelled and other things not labelled. There were some savoury things that may have been vegan, but I contented myself with a little bliss ball. I didn't want to fill up too much, for reasons that will soon be apparent.

Afternoon tea - Bliss Ball at Science Week QT Hotel

Afterwards, on my drive home, I took advantage of being on the Gold Coast and stopped into Kuan Yin at Southport. Kuan Yin used to have a restaurant in Fortitude Valley, which was one of my favourite places. But they closed and switched to a home delivery service, which was nice but not as good. But the Southport version continues to operate, with the same menu. Which meant it was time to order my favourites. I had a standard order there - Taro Soy Milk Bubble Tea, Fried Dumplings, and Sweet & Sour Pork Bento. Normally I am not a sweet and sour fan, but theirs is so good. A proper, thick, sweet and sour sauce smeared on it, rather that the super sweet red sauce you see so often.

Dumplings and Taro Soy Bubble Milk Tea at Kuan Yin Southport

BBQ Pork Bento Box at Kuan Yin Southport

Kuan Yin Southport - 2/152 Scarborough St, Southport QLD 4215 - (07) 5511 5121

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post

Peek a Boo

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  1. That's so weird that ratatouille would be spicy!! But those tarts and the apricot danishes!!
    I avoid sweet and sour for the same reasons I'm super scared of that gross red sauce!!

    1. Yeah, I guess that called it 'stewed vegetables', but you could tell it was basically ratatouille... with spice.

  2. Oh man. I miss Kuan Yin so much.

  3. I feel your pain about the conferences! I just went to one where dinner was 5 slices of squash, 2 spears of broccolini, and a sweet potato cake the size of one thick slice of sweet potato. I'd estimate it at 150 calories altogether. Luckily I fortified myself with Fritos from the vending machine before dinner!

    1. That is not enough food! How do they not understand this?

  4. The first lunch looks great and definitely an improvement over the previous one of just salad and fruit! Your meal at Kuan Yin looks amazing, too!

    1. I was so happy with the food! And so happy to visit Kuan Yin again as well.

  5. Well it’s certainly encouraging the vegan options have improved somewhat! I’ve certainly been there done that with a plate of leaves.
    I am really a bit mystified why all veterinarians aren’t at least vegetarian. Very bizarre.

    1. It is a very strange world. I was vegan before I went to vet school. I now know one other vegan vet, but I only met her earlier this year.

  6. Thats awesome that they stepped up their vegan food game! I know my husband went to a wordpress confrence and their vegan food option was Philly Cheesesteak. But I think I would rather have the pad thai ^__^

    1. I think mock meats may be a step above this place, but maybe next time! But I'd rather a pad thai as well, noodles are awesome!