#dellafam spotlight: dana fortune of vegan snack party
At della bowls, we love and appreciate our community more than words could express. We are honored and grateful to have the love and support we do from our loyal fans and customers.
We truly would not be where we are without our community.
That's why we like to share the love, and introduce you to one another whenever possible.
Meet Dana Fortune. AKA @VeganSnackParty
First and foremost, she's an artist.
Dana works across a range of media, from textiles to collage to photography. Her work blends fantasy, sci-fi, retro-futurism, and femininity into a technicolor dream world.
Dana sells prints and other goods featuring her collages and photography on Society6. She enjoys creating textile work whenever she can find the time. She loves to make wall hangings, pom-pom necklaces, and even rugs!
Dana is also a U.S. History teacher.
"My goal is to teach and demonstrate respect, compassion, and understanding. It isn’t always easy to teach or to hear, but talking about the racism, exploitation, and inequality so many people have faced in this country (and beyond) is the greatest way I can think of to make a change in this world."
(Good job, Dana!)
Dana says that we’re lucky here in Miami.
Why? Because we are part of such a diverse community that racism can seem far away or not that relevant. But the reality is that 97% of her students come from other countries.
What makes this country beautiful is that we are so diverse. We need to remember that. Dana has learned so much while teaching these amazing students, and hopes that one day, we will all be learning from them, too. The opportunity to teach and be taught by them has been the greatest gift to Dana.
Dana is a vegan. She is the only vegan teacher at her school.
Students are often curious about what Dana eats, and they have a lot of questions. They think she can only eat salad!
So, this year, she started a vegan Instagram profile to share the food she eats with them. She lists prices, offers recipe ideas, and shares where she shops for groceries.
Even some of the parents follow along and have tried her recipes! Dana is so excited to see them interested and open to trying new things.
Artist. History Teacher. Vegan. Yoga, too? Oh my!
Dana's been hard at work this summer, training to become a certified yoga instructor.
"Yoga has been significant in my own personal healing and in helping with depression, anxiety, migraines, heartbreak, all of it!" she says.
She's not quite sure how yet, but she's determined to incorporate a yoga practice with kids, and maybe their families, so that they can begin to embrace the tools and experience the healing benefits at a much younger age than so many of us were able to.
"I believe yoga would be a beautiful alternative to detention, help reduce testing anxiety, improve physical fitness, and teach coping skills."
(Smart girl, Dana!)
When Dana went VEG...
First step was going vegetarian right after her 16th birthday. (That was 15 years ago). Dana started cooking vegan at home about three years ago, before vegan food became readily available in Miami.
THEN she went fully vegan last January, about one and a half years ago.
When she was about 15, Dana read something in a book about the transference of energy.
The idea is: when you eat meat, you’re absorbing the pain, suffering, and fear of the animal you are consuming.
That idea haunted her, and she knew she'd go vegan eventually. Having such limited options when going out to eat in Miami made it a more challenging transition, though.
Then came della bowls.
Dana says that after della bowls opened, it paved the way. "More vegan restaurants followed!"
Dana says, "I’m vegan for the animals, for the environment, for the people who live near factory farms and suffer health consequences as a result, and for my own health. I feel good about the choices I'm making, and my body is happier than ever, too."
Dana remembers her first time EVER at della bowls.
She worked in Wynwood and was meeting someone there on a first date for lunch. (Ooh-la-la!) It was about a month after della bowls opened. (That would be circa December 2015).
She built her own bowl, and remembers being "BEYOND excited" about being able to eat and order everything on the menu.
While it wasn’t happily ever after for her and her date, She forever thanks him for introducing her to her first della bowl.
Dana's love affair with della bowls has continued to stand the test of time!
Can you guess Dana's favorite della bowl?
The dale bowl! Why? "Because it’s delicious!" But, really, she loves them all. Whenever she goes with friends, she tries to steal some of their bowls, too.
While the dale is her favorite bowl, the black coconut rice is her favorite ingredient.
What would be in the "Dana bowl" at della bowls?
- Grain of some sort
- Tofu or Seitan
- Marinated Kale
- Double Avocado
The recipe Dana is dying to try at home
"I was lucky enough to attend the first della cooking class, and the recipe I was most excited about learning was definitely the black coconut rice. I’ve made it a few times, and I’d like to practice that more. I’d love to learn how to make more of the sauces, and how to work with tempeh."
(Dana... we've got your back on the tempeh. That one is coming soon to the blog! Stay tuned!)
So, what's next?
Dana has experienced the della bowls cooking class... and she wants more! Cooking classes AND community events.
"Della has been such an important part of my experience as a vegan in Miami, I’ve brought so many of my non-vegan friends to try it out, and everyone loved the inviting atmosphere, the rich flavors, and walking through the garden."
(We cannot wait to get you in more classes with us Dana, that was SO fun!)
Straight from the Vegan Snack Party's veggie-loving mouth:
"della bowls is truly special.
Thank you for creating not only an amazing space for vegan food, but for creating a beautiful and inclusive space that nurtures community."
THANK YOU, Dana, for being very truly extra special, yourself! We can't wait to see you at The Doral Yard.
Visit Dana, and follow her Vegan Snack Party!
Dana celebrates her bowl making skills with @urbanwit and @miamivibesmag