Saturday, August 9, 2008

Casa Que Pasa: 1415 Railroad Ave

Nothing says Saturday like linner (lunch/dinner combined) at Casa complete with a Cadillac Margarita. Above is mine from several hours ago today. (Now before I get much further, here is a tidbit on the subject of being vegan and alcohol. I am aware that many wines and alcoholic beverages use animal by-products in the filtration process, but I will confess that is not something at the top of my vegan priority list. I will also be flexible on the subject of sugar and honey. It is not as though I seek these things out, but the fact that beverages may have been filtered with animal by-products, or that my bread may have honey, etc. will not prevent me from consuming such things. I have given this a lot of thought--I did go two years with no honey or refined sugar and cooked all of my own food from scratch, but then decided that there are certain things I can live with and not feel badly about. I seriously could write a rather lengthy post on this subject, but frankly I don't want to. At least not right now. I think there is no way to be a pure vegan in this modern world because of the interconnectedness of everything, so for me it is a matter of deciding what I can live with and what I can't, but also constantly striving for self-improvement. I know there are some vegans out there who would be disappointed in my philosophy, but such things are a personal choice and everyone does the best they can. And for me, right now, this is where I am. So enough of that....)

As I was saying, nothing says relaxing lazy Saturday better than linner at Casa. Casa is another Bellingham institution, known for inexpensive yet good food and a really mellow vibe, not to mention their tequila selection. When they were gone, many people mourned, and when they returned people celebrated and ate and drank happily. They are very vegan-friendly and they even have a vegan burrito on the menu. While I admit I miss the tofu burrito from the Casa of days-gone-by, I am glad that there are still some stand-bys, like the spicy carrots and the "light lunch," (which is actually huge in terms of portion size.)

My favorite item on the menu as-of-late is a vegan version of the pinto bean tostada with extra salsa, as seen above. Casa is a great place for conversation with friends, and for me has always had the association of "comfort food, " or rather a "comfort" hang-out; it's a place where I used to eat as a poor college student that I return to now some years and more money later, where I can still unwind and de-stress over good food and drinks with old friends. It's nice when a place still holds its personal appeal through the years and changes of a person's life; it's a place I can't "outgrow," like a little piece of home. So yes, I am sentimentally attached to Casa, even though the tofu burrito is long gone. Some things are consistent in their appeal even though there are changes... I recommend checking them out some time if you haven't already.

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