Sometimes, the mistakes we make in the kitchen lead to our biggest successes. Most stories regarding the history of fudge, for example, allude to the fact that it resulted from a caramel-making accident. Similarly, plant-based company Louisville Vegan Jerky Company happened by accident. According to a feature on Vice, six years ago, founder of Louisville Vegan Jerky Company, Stanley Chase III was working out of his vegan food truck when a mishap lead to most of his plant-based meats getting burnt to a crisp. Rather than toss the batch, Chase tasted it — and he discovered that the flavor had not changed much, but the texture was similar to the crisp, savory, and smoky combination of flavors that he missed since cutting meat out of his diet. From this one mistake, Chase’s hand-crafted vegan jerky company was born. Today, you can find bags of the company’s vegan jerky in stores across the country.
The company has been so successful, Chase told Insider Louisville “we get emails every week asking where our storefront is.” He continued, “That’s where the conversation started. What if we had a storefront? Once I get an idea in my head, I can’t stop thinking about it, and obsessing about it, and writing stuff out, and drawing it, and planning it.” Chase’s dream of opening up a brick-and-mortar location will soon be realized and on May 2, 2017, when Morels Cafe, a restaurant that may never have happened if not for one little mistake, opens its doors.
The cafe will feature a deli case where you can order options like Buffalo chicken dip by the pound as well as comfort food sandwich options like plant-based Philly cheesesteaks, muffulettas, and other vegan comfort food options that Chase believes Louisville is lacking compared to other cities. In addition to that, Chase hopes to elevate other brands that are making waves in the plant-based food space with innovative products. “I wanna feature something Beyond Meat is making, I wanna feature something Tofurky is making, I wanna feature something Miyoko is making. These are people who are putting all their energy into one thing and doing it really, really well,” said Chase.
The cafe will also feature store-exclusive jerky flavors from Louisville Vegan Jerky Company, so it might be time to start planning your trip to Derby City — for the vegan food.
Of course, if you can’t make it to Louisville, you can make your own vegan comfort food with the help of the Food Monster App (available for both iPhone and Android). This recipe app features over 8,000 vegan recipes, has plenty of options for classics like Sloppy Joes, Philly cheesesteaks, pulled “pork” sandwiches, and more. Making vegan food delicious has never been easier!
Lead image source: Morels Cafe/Facebook