Key Lime Pie (and a Little Whisky) Convince Mike to Go Vegan


Mike from Applecore was one of my first blog followers. Despite the fact that he wasn’t vegan, he liked my posts and commented often. I started following him too and we became good blogger buddies.

When I found out Mike would be in SoCal, I suggested that we get together for coffee. He and I, along with our spouses, met at a cafe, and it was great! The conversation flowed effortlessly.

Since Mike and his wife aren’t vegan, I didn’t bring the topic up. I don’t like to preach. But while saying our goodbyes, Mike said, “I didn’t even get to ask you my questions about veganism.”

This surprised me – I didn’t even know Mike was veg-curious. But since it sounded like he was, I suggested that we meet again at Au Lac, a vegan restaurant in Fountain Valley.

At our second meeting, in addition to having a fabulous meal, Mike and Florence quizzed my husband and me about veganism. I got the sense that Florence wanted to go plant-based for her health. Mike, however; didn’t sound entirely sure.


That’s me in the green next to my hubby, Paul, and Mike and Florence are across from us

Since Mike and his wife were going to be in Venice Beach the next day, I suggested that they go to Café Gratitude, one of my favorite vegan restaurants. “And you must try their Key Lime Pie!” I ordered.

The next day I got this email from Mike:

Hi Celeste and Paul,

Florence and I just returned from Venice and lunch at Café Gratitude, and it was really good! When I told our waiter we had driven all the way from Pasadena (we took Florence’s aunt with us) just so I could try their Key Lime Pie, he had the restaurant comp it for us! Isn’t that cool?! 

We all shared and we all loved it! We even picked up a couple of their other desserts to try later on this evening – the coconut cream pie and their chocolate cream pie. (I just snuck a couple of samples and they are amazing!)

For lunch, Florence ordered their mushroom burger, which I tasted.  I had the Mexican Bowl – especially good with their hot sauce! And Delia had their tacos. All of us were very impressed with the foods. I think we are going to like this plant-based diet!

I may fall off the wagon occasionally if Irish whiskey or scotch or various ales are not strictly vegan, but I am aiming to make our main meals vegan. There are already a bunch of recipes I look forward to trying.  🙂


I was excited by Mike’s email and got back to him telling him that whisky is vegan.

Now I’m wondering what I’ve done. Mike and Florence are interested in a plant-based diet for health reasons, and here I am encouraging them to eat fancy vegan desserts and drink whiskey. Oh boy, I think I need to write a post about the difference between a plant-based diet and veganism to clear my conscience.

Until I get to that, let me just say that just because something is vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy. More on that soon!

About celestedimilla

Hey there. I’m Celeste, California girl, writer, psychotherapist and burgeoning plant-based foodie.
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20 Responses to Key Lime Pie (and a Little Whisky) Convince Mike to Go Vegan

  1. MaryBeth says:

    “AMEN!” to “. . .Just because something is vegan doesn’t mean it’s healthy.”
    Mike sounds like a great guy! I often joke that vodka is vegan — and gluten free! 🙂 Oreos are vegan, for Pete’s sake. Can’t wait to read your post on this issue.

    • Thanks so much for your comment Marybeth! There’s a lot of vegan junk food out there. I had another friend who decided to go vegan, but she didn’t know what to eat so she subsisted on French fries for two weeks. She would probably have been better off eating meat and dairy! Celeste 🙂

  2. debbiec67 says:

    Way to go! It’s so fun when friends and family find things they like about this and then decide they can do more. One step at a time …

    • Hey Debbie! I’ve been feeling kind of bad about encouraging the junk, but I suppose you’re right. If it get’s someone one food in the door, that’s a start. I just have to make sure to follow up! Celeste 🙂

  3. bloomlisa says:

    What a fun & inspiring post Celeste, I loved it. Thanks for the smile.

  4. Mike Lince says:

    This is a fun post. I am pleased you shared not only our story but also your growing wealth of knowledge with us. It is one more thing we will have to share with you via blog stories and updates as we experiment with menus in other countries, starting in Scotland next week! You are a good friend. Thank you from both of us.
    Mike and Florence Lince
    The 6 Monthers (

    • It will be interesting to hear how you manage a plant-based diet in Scotland. I look forward to hearing stories about that! We really enjoyed hanging out with you guys, and I wish you safe travels to Scotland. Celeste 🙂

  5. Sometimes the transition to veganism is easier when people find familiar and comforting versions of the (animal-based) foods they love. My position is that if it takes a few slices of cream pie and a favorite alcoholic beverage to put one on the path to a plant-based diet, then so be it. From there it’s a natural progression (with wonderful encouragement from friends like you) from there to a healthy, whole foods-strong version of veganism.

    • You are so wise Annie! I was feeling like I sent them astray, but when I think back to how I first went vegan it involved a lot of dark chocolate candy bars. I needed something comforting, like you say, to keep me encouraged to make such dramatic changes in my eating. The chocolate bars eventually fell away and I developed a healthier diet (although I’ve been slacking a bit lately, but I’m planning to work on that!) Thank you for your thoughts – they’ve helped me to put things in perspective. Celeste 🙂

  6. Joni says:

    I must say that I was surprised to learn that veganism can be so unhealthy and full of processed foods. I guess thinking people make food choices based on different criteria. What I’ve figured out is that vegans eat the way they do strictly because of their feelings about animals. A person more interested in health might eat a vegan diet but it could be a completely different diet than others eating vegan. It’s simply plant-based. There is overlap but it’s far from the same thing. Then there are the non-thinking people who eat just to fill their bellies.

    • Hey there Joni! Thanks so much for your thoughtful comment – I really appreciate it! I have to say that I agree with you. I also see the meaning of the word, ‘vegan’ as pertaining to someone who chooses not to eat animal products because of their feelings for animals. And I define someone who abstains from eating animal products strictly for health reasons as someone following a ‘plant-based diet.’ Despite the fact that I believe this, I don’t always use the words appropriately. I probably should be more careful about how I use the terms, but sometimes it’s a challenge. For example, I don’t eat animal products both because I care about animals and for my health. So what do I call myself? I usually just say I’m vegan because I feel that it’s a broader term. As for Mike and his wife, it was inaccurate for me say that they’ve ‘gone vegan,’ because they are abstaining predominantly for health reasons. I guess in the case of Mike and his wife, I used the term ‘vegan’ because I think it’s more familiar to most people. I should probably be more careful about this, however. Thanks again for your comment – you’ve made me think!! Celeste 🙂

  7. How wonderful!!! Two more vegans in the world means a lot more animals get to live. yeah 🙂

  8. Love this story! I’m with “Unrefined…” If a few familiar foods (whiskey and pie) make the transition to veganism smoother, so be it. I went vegan for the animals and didn’t really think about whole, plant-based foods for a while. Now I’m a healthier vegan. Whatever it takes 🙂

    • Hey there Jean! Thanks for your thoughtful comment! As you know, I came to veganism for health reasons and then got onboard with animal rights. I think right now with the popularity of plant-based diet books, a lot of people are going vegan for health reasons. No matter how people are coming to veganism however; I think it’s a good thing! I hope Mike and his wife continue down the vegan path. Celeste 🙂

  9. Sophie33 says:

    Yeah, Celeste! Way to go! That’s great to hear that your friends loved the vegan desserts & main dishes! Yeah!! x

  10. Pingback: Vegan in Scotland? | Honk If You're Vegan

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