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Your Vegan BFF - Beer and Food Festival

Ready to rock your inner vegan? The 3rd Annual L.A. Vegan Beer and Food Fest returns to the Sunset Strip on May 12. More than just vegan food, the festival will feature at least 50 craft beers and four live bands.

If you're curious but not sure what to expect, let's get the terminology straight first: A vegan, or a person who practices veganism, avoids any food derived from animal products. So that means no meat or poultry, but also no eggs or dairy. The good news is that a vegan diet incorporates many fruits and vegetables as well as beans, legumes, nuts, and soy products – and people have come up with some mighty tasty foods to eat from those groups.

At the food part of the festival, you can expect to see some of L.A.'s most popular vegan food trucks, including the Plant Food for People (known for its jackfruit tacos); Corazon de Jah, featuring Latin, Asian, and Italian offerings; Doomie's Home Cookin', which makes mock Buffalo wings and calamari; and the Frankenstand ("100% plant-based spooky cuisine").

What about the beer? Vegan beer is beer that is made without any animal ingredients, additives, or processing agents. (Believe it or not, animal products are commonly used to stabilize, clarify, and filter regular beers.) At least 12 different breweries will be represented at the festival, including L.A.-based beverage companies Golden Road Brewing, Fireman's Brew Beverages, and Smog City Brewing.

Of course while you're chowing down on vegan treats and sampling all of those beers, you'll want something to listen to. The festival has got you covered: Featured bands include The Country, Kevin Martin, 28 North, and Torrey Summer.

Sponsored by Tony's Darts Away, Quarry Girl, and The Roxy, the festival will contribute a portion of proceeds to the California Wildlife Center. As a special bonus, festival organizers are offering a discount to CBS Los Angeles readers: Enter the code "cbsreader" at checkout when ordering tickets and you will receive a $5 discount (limited to the first 50 readers).

May 12, 2012
12:00 PM to 6:00 PM

Tickets: $60 for VIP admission (gets you early entry, special access to the VIP lounge, and special beers); $50 for general admission; $25 for non-drinking. Bonus for CBS Los Angeles readers: Enter the code "cbsreader" on the ticket page for a $5 discount off VIP and general admission tickets (limited to 50).

Jeanne Ponessa Fratello writes about kids' nutrition at Jolly Tomato and about South Bay events and attractions at South Bay Sparkle.

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