Vegging out at Lolla

17 Sep

I mentioned in my last post that I spent a couple of days in Chicago for Lollapalooza 2011. If you know me very well, you know that crowds are not really my thing. I get stressed out, and when I get stressed out, I’m not at my most pleasant. However, I was determined to enjoy Lolla with that guy I’m in love with and his brother, too. This was their fourth year, and I was hell-bent on making sure I didn’t make it their worst. And really, how could it not be at least somewhat awesome with that line-up?

This isn’t a music blog, but I will tell you that I loved these bands (in the order in which I saw them): Tennis, Foster the People, A Perfect Circle, Girl Talk, Phantogram, My Morning Jacket, Gold Motel, Best Coast, and Deadmau5.

Liked these bands: Smith Westerns, Wye Oak, Delta Spirit, Maps and Atlases, Imelda May, and the Foo Fighters.

And didn’t care for these: DJ Neil Armstrong, the Deftons and Cee-Lo.

Anyway, this is a food blog, so here’s how I vegged out (but still ate dairy) at the music festival. I have to give the festival planners props for trying to incorporate some vegetarian options into the food area, but there are only so many burritos I can eat in three days. I believe there were four different meat-less burritos on offer and two or three veggie burgers. Not great planning.

My first nibble — and certainly one of the best — was this Portobello Wrap from the all-vegetarian Crescent Foods:

It was really delicious and memorable. The portobellos were succulent. Is that a gross-sounding word? I also got to wait in line behind Mario and Luigi:

After that was a black bean and rice burrito.

I don’t remember where this was from — looking at the map, it appears to be The Benevolent Burrito from Crescent again. It paled in comparison to my lunch, sadly.

By the time we got back to the hotel, after 1 million 10 hours of festivaling, we were STARVING. It was late and we were dog-tired, too, so we ordered a pizza from D’Agostino’s. Behold:

Zucchini, mushrooms, artichoke hearts and minced garlic — aka PERFECTION. This was an incredible pizza. Also note the adorable eating companion.

The next day, we got hungry fairly early:

So I made the Black Bean Falafel Veggie Burger from Olde Town Smokehouse my lunch. It was tasty enough but incredibly disappointing. See?

Just a patty on a bun. That’s it. There were condiment dispensers, but this thing was really small and not even remotely filling. Sad.

Soon thereafter, I needed further sustenance, so I hopped over to Green Street (sorta the farmer’s market section) to see what I could see. I clearly should have been eating over here the entire weekend, but I digress. There were fruit smoothies, but that didn’t sound filling enough, so instead, I rolled with grilled Brazilian cheese topped with jalapeno jelly:

This was delicious, and five minutes after eating it, I regretted it. My stomach hurt so much. It was very fatty and kind of a ridiculous choice, but I wanted it. Lesson learned.

I apparently ate nothing for dinner, since I can find no more food photos that night. We were supposed to go to an after show, but that’s a long sad tale of its own, and I was cranky, so it is entirely possible that I had a single-serving back of Lay’s and a Nature Valley bar that night. I wouldn’t discount it.

Anyway, I was the first one to the festival on Sunday morning because I really wanted to see Gold Motel. When that guy I love arrived, I had a piece of Deep Dish Cheese Pizza from Connie’s Pizza:

It wasn’t huge, but it was really good, much better than I expected festival pizza to taste. I should have eaten more, though. I had a nasty blood-sugar crash this day. To remedy this, we had smoothies at some point, but I was in no state to photograph them. I think we also had some on Friday, too, but the photos are in the ether somewhere.

The sky looked ominous:

But we were hungry that afternoon, so we strolled over to Green Street to eat by far my best meal of the festival. Sadly the Green Street food vendors are not listed on the Lolla website, but I can tell you it was was freakin’ amazing coconut red curry with seasonal veggies over steamed rice. Drool. My love also got into the action:

His was lemongrass chicken. He said it was incredible.

Then we got rained on pretty intensely while watching Best Coast. So fun.

We had some truly terrible Chinese delivery for dinner that I didn’t bother to photograph.

So that was eating at Lollapalooza. As you can see, it was pretty decent, and I admittedly could have done my part to make it even better, such as eating a big, filling breakfast in the mornings and bringing snacks. I also have to give the festival credit for allowing empty reusable water bottles into the park and having fill stations with clean water all over the place. That saved me a ton of dough and kept me hydrated throughout. Check out my Klean Kanteen making a few photo appearances:

He was our little buddy.

In short, Lollapalooza was a blast! I would totally go again. In fact, this year we’re thinking about Coachella. Eeek! Can’t wait.


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