Each year, Vegetarian Times celebrates the best new restaurants in the U.S. serving the plant-based dining community. This year, our list contains 11 fantastic examples of culinary craft, innovation, and resilience.
Opening a restaurant is an intimidating undertaking in the best of times. Data from the National Restaurant Association indicates that at least 1 in 3 new restaurants will close within their first year — and that’s considered a conservative estimate. Restaurant owners are dealing with high costs, fickle social-media-driven trends, and the challenges of a global pandemic that may be waning but is far from over. And when a chef or owner decides to follow their conscience to open a fully plant-based restaurant, they’re accepting a few extra bumps along the already-tough road.
But, for those of us who have put up with countless restaurant meals where we find ourselves with no plant-based options, ordering an uninspired salad (“hold the cheese”) or plate of fries as a main course, opening the menu at a restaurant that’s fully meat-free can feel like stumbling on a treasure chest. “So you mean I can have anything?,” we ask our server, amazed. It feels like we’re being welcomed to the table — the very essence of hospitality.
The 11 restaurants on this year’s Best New Restaurants list all embody this sense to the core. Places on our list come in all different shapes and kinds, from cozy neighborhood cafes to ambitious fine dining. There are elite, big-name chefs and first-timers still working day jobs on the side. But every one of them invites diners of all kinds to enjoy meals that are beautiful, delicious, and carefully crafted. And each takes a stand in their own way for a way of eating that leaves the planet a little bit better.
Continue reading… (via Vegetarian Times)