From Seattle to San Diego, the west coast is known for diverse landscapes, sunshine, beaches, and experimental foodies. Los Angeles, San Francisco, Portland, and Seattle hail as meccas for plant-based forward restaurants, yet don’t discount the continuous flow of sprouting plant-based eateries and new plant-based menus. From pop-ups to grab-and-go to sit down restaurants, here are 15 newly opened vegan-friendly establishments in 2019 on the west coast where you can find delicious delights.
1. Yalla Mediterranean, California
This California chain has seven locations scattered around the state including Southern California-based Culver City, Burbank, and Seal Beach and Northern California-based Dublin, Fremont, Walnut Creek, and Pleasant Hill. Yalla Mediterranean focuses on providing fresh, culturally inspired food that is prepared each and every morning. Plus, Yalla Mediterranean follows the philosophy that everyone should be welcome and offer vegan, vegetarian, dairy-free, and gluten-free options. On top of that, they practice and use compostable everything!
While they already offer vegan options, as of August 2018, Yalla Mediterranean “has partnered with Impossible Foods to introduce restaurant patrons to a series of new plant-based Mediterranean options that are sure to have vegans and non-vegans overjoyed.” Their menu now features an arrangement of items made from this plant-based meat alternative including “the Impossible Plate, Impossible Wrap, and Impossible Salad.”
A brand new plant-based restaurant has opened its door this year in one of California’s most iconic neighborhoods — Beverly Hills. Run by Nic Adler, owner of a Los Angeles staple Monty’s Good Burger, Nic’s on Beverly features an entire menu of plant-based goodies including avocado crispy rice, heirloom and peach tomato salad, and vegetable pot pie. Yet, Nic’s on Beverly is not just another typical plant-based restaurant that are so common in foodie-friendly Los Angeles. This new establishment takes a “melting pot of cuisines” and makes them accessible to often left-out vegans and vegetarians, while also sourcing Californian produce. Nic’s on Beverly also “makes it a point not to serve any pre-made plant-based products.” Plus, it doesn’t hurt that Nic’s on Beverly also has a cocktail menu!
One review labeled Nic’s on Beverly a “vegan vision” gushing that “the mission here isn’t to make delicious, plant-based food, but rather, offer Angelenos a restaurant where they can take their pick of innovative culinary creations that just so happen to be vegan-friendly.”
3. Baia, San Francisco, California
If you know San Francisco, then you shouldn’t be surprised that this city is resplendent with long-standing vegan-friendly restaurants. Yet, how do new establishments make their way in a city overflowing with great options?
Baia (“bay” in Italian) is looking to make its name heard by turning Italian — generally meat-heavy cultural cuisine — vegan.
This new vegan-based Italian eatery will be opening in the place of 21-year-old Jardiniere, which is closing, in the popular Hayes Valley neighborhood of San Francisco. Owner Tracy Vogt — owner and operator of a “32-acre farm animal sanctuary” called Charlie’s Acres — is partnering with vegan-chef Matthew Kenney to open this entertaining and interesting vegan spinoff. While this dynamic duo hasn’t set a grand opening date or published their menu, Chef Kenny’s website promotes their new vegan restaurant with a short, sweet, titillating expose:
“The identity of Baia exists at the intersection of opulence and approachability; the menu will offer a selection of innovative gourmet dishes, inclusive of all dining preferences and accommodating to all occasions.”
4. Burger Patch, Sacramento, California
Recently opened in April of this year, Burger Patch — born from Sacramento-based pop-ups — is a new 100 percent plant-based burger joint located in Sacramento, California. They use zero animal products — no meat, no dairy, no eggs. Plus, Burger Patch aims to make their plant-based burgers with zero cholesterol, zero high-fructose corn syrup, and with ingredients that are Fair Trade, non-GMO, and organic. Burger Patch has seen an influx of diverse customers, from vegan and plant-based dieters to those who are “veggie curious” or those practicing “meatless Mondays.” This meatless burger joint aims to help the environment, help animal activism, and help people make a “guilt-free decision that they can walk away feeling really good about.”
5. Baskin Robbins
Vegan options aren’t exclusive to boutique food joints anymore! As of this year, Baskin Robbins added two new vegan ice cream flavors to their menu: Non-Dairy Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough and Non-Dairy Chocolate Extreme. These vegan ice cream options are created from a “coconut oil and almond butter base,” so you know they are chock full of healthy plant-based fat as well! Baskin Robbins also made a note that these vegan options are made without “preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, and artificial dyes and flavors.”
6. The Modern Vegan, San Diego, California
While the original Modern Vegan is based in Las Vegas, Utah, there is now a second location serving Californians in sunny San Diego as of June 8th! Modern Vegan is exactly as the name implies — a “wholly vegan bar and restaurant with an extensive menu of more than 100 different dishes.” After a year of renovating its 3,200 square-foot dining room, Modern Vegan plans to offer patrons a “behemoth of a menu” including “an eclectic array of appetizers, breakfast and lunch favorites, skillets, waffles, sandwiches, burgers, soups, acai bowls, salads, and desserts” that are all 100 percent plant-based. Out of the 100 dishes, Modern Vegan has a few specialties such as Mac n Cheese Baseballs, Steak n V’Eggs, Chick’n and Waffles, and even a deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwich!
This vegan California staple is no longer quarantined within the foodie-centric walls of Los Angeles but is now branching out to its southern neighbor Santa Barbara. Fala Bar is slated to open a new location in Santa Barbara’s bustling Public Market. Fala Bar offers affordable 100 percent plant-based and vegan meals. What makes Fala Bar truly stand out is that they use beans and grains that have been “sprouted for better nutrient absorption and digestion,” as well as an almost completely gluten-free menu — sans the “pitas, buns, and tortillas” — all of which can be subbed with a cabbage leaf in order to make gluten-free. But that’s not all! Fala Bar uses ingredients that are organic, kosher, and free of soy, dairy, nuts, additives or any frozen foods!
It may be a year old, but Bibi Ji’s location in Santa Barbara is still making headlines and for good reason. This vegan-friendly restaurant is the creative brainchild of three accomplished restauranteurs — Alejandro Medina, Rajat Parr (a James Beard-award winning sommelier), and Executive Chef Gary Singh — and features a cultural mashup of Aussie-Indian inspired dishes. While the menu is not 100 percent vegan, they offer an eclectic assortment of vegan-friendly options making this the perfect restaurant for large parties with diverse diets and palates. Per the Bibi ji website, “all senses go with the rich and dazzling colors on each plate, fresh and exotic aromas, playful neon lighting, and enlivened sounds.” If all that wasn’t enough to make you plan a visit, the New York Times included Bibi ji in its “52 Places to Go in 2019” list.
There’s not a whole lot of buzz about this small burger and hot dog counter-service joint, but what we do know is that it’s new and it’s completely vegan-friendly! Galaxy Rune, opening in June 2019, sets itself apart from most vegan burger joints by opting to make their own meat substitutes instead of going with the Impossible Burger or Field Roast products.
You may recognize the name of this bakery as it was featured on the show Shark Tank. Yet, this idea has come a very long way with locations across a few states including a new location just recently opened in Seattle in October of 2018. This bakery is unique in that it is 100 percent vegan meaning dairy-free, lactose-free, and egg0free. On top of that, due to the fact that this bakery is completely plant-based, it is also cholesterol-free. Cinnaholic Bakery offers “20 unique frosting flavors and a variety of fresh and decadent toppings,” to go along with “award-winning, handcrafted cinnamon rolls, brownies, edible cookie dough, and baked cookies.”
11. Broadfork Cafe, Seattle, Washington
A May 2018 addition to Seattle’s U District, Broadfork Cafe is a plant-based restaurant that offers a wide variety of plant-based and delicious dishes including “avocado toast, dairy-free yogurt bowls, barbecued jackfruit sandwiches, meatless burgers, grain bowls, smoothies, and espresso.” Yet, this vegan eatery goes one step further by sourcing all of their food from community farms meaning they not only support local, but the product is highly organic and sustainable. They pride themselves on practicing “truly farm-to-fork” practices.
If you’re a true fine coffee lover, then you probably recognize the Stumptown coffee as one that belongs in the top echelons. Yet, it’s not a new coffee shop that makes it to this list of newbies, it’s a whole new foodie lovers cafe opened in early 2019 by Stumptown’s owner Duane Sorenson. The shop is vegan, gluten-free, and filled with “good coffee, fresh juices, healthy eats, and vegan pastries.” The Portland Monthly describes the avocado toast as “layers of umami-roaring caramelized onions and a wealth of mushrooms — some raw, some foraged, some wood-oven singed — over an earthly slice.” Holiday offers some of the staples turned fancy such as the golden smoothie bowl described as a “milkshake-thick whirl of coconut cream yogurt, turmeric-cardamom syrup, and mango poured into an eye-catching arrangement of granola, pistachios, and lush fruit.”
13. Baby Blue Pizza, Portland, Oregon
Portland is a champion for pop-ups gone full brick and mortar. While Baby Blue Pizza hasn’t gone quite brick and mortar, it is pioneered by a popular vegan chef who has mastered both the cart and the pop-up. Odie O’Connor is known for his pizza cart, Gracie’s Apizza, offering vegan pizza and now — after leaving Gracie’s Apizza — it looks like this dynamic chef will be featured at yet another pop-up featuring his signature pizza. This time, O’Connor will char-spot his pies in a “wood-fired oven” and offer “toppings like house-made seitan pepperoni, house-made ricotta, and blended San Marzano tomato sauce.” Baby Blue Pizza will feature six permanent pizza options along with seasonal rotating options.
You may think that the vegan burger has been overdone, yet don’t let that persuade you from visiting Honeybee Burger located in the Los Feliz neighborhood of Los Angeles. As of May first, Honeybee Burger is flipping their vegan burgers and sliders alongside plant-based sides such as sweet potato fries and grilled “cheese” all topped with their house-made sides. Looking for a plant-based sweet treat? Honeybee Burger also offers shakes and soft-serve to whet your sweet-tooth appetite.
Located in the sleepy Santa Monica neighborhood, Good Good Vegan Kitchen and Bakeshop is the perfect morning breakfast spot for vegans and non-vegans alike. Recently opened in the spring of 2019, Good Good Vegan Kitchen and Bakeshop offers vegan and gluten-free options including pastries, cakes, and “eastern European influenced goodness.” The mother-daughter team that began with To Bake & Be — a pastry delivery service — is excited to finally have a brick and mortar establishment to share their vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free goodies with the Santa Monica patrons and beyond!
We also highly recommend downloading our Food Monster App, which is available for iPhone, and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 15,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to new recipes every day. Check it out!
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