Passion is the single best emotion used to describe what those who take the leap into the unknown and start plant-based eating establishments have. A statistic might show that it may be a bit riskier than even the most obscure or focused meat selling establishment but when passion prevails, and caution is swept aside, the manifestation is true devotion to a dream. While geographic location has shown to be an important factor, because plant-based trends do not trend at the same rate everywhere, timing is also of great significance. Historically timing can be either great for specialty food markets, as we see today, with the recent boom of plant-based foodies or it can be detrimental. Cities all over the world have seen the present demand cause the perfect storm of bustling vegan eating establishments with beaucoup patrons.
Fortunately, with media tracking, reviews, and social media publicity, the public awareness has contributed to the immense popularity of plant-based eateries. Award-winning menus have also set patronage ablaze. The pouring of heart and ingenuity into creating inventive menus and the charmed environments in which they are nestled has been a recipe for success. A host of quaint restaurants that are home to elaborate “dirt menus” (a term used to refer to plant-based food) have become mainstream dining-out hot spots.
On the topic of awards, the 92nd annual Oscars snubbed meat and served a mostly vegan menu, while the 77th Golden Globes served an entirely vegan menu. There are many vegan awards and accolades given by vegan magazines and vegan organizations yet it was a treat to see Food and Wine Magazine name Philadelphia’s Vedge Restaurant” most important restaurant of the decade” in 2019. Prior to awards, the mere existence of a solely vegan restaurant was a guarantee of some semblance of fame, but this national recognition upped the ante on the plant-based restaurant scene.
On the educational front, a culinary school that taught the cause and effect of foods related to health surfaced in the 1970s. In that era, vegetarianism was considered a rejection of social norms in addition to a statement about healthy living. In recent years, many cooking schools and institutes have begun emphasizing plant-based cooking. The popularity of plant-based education prompted the training of a new school of chefs to keep up with the growing trend in vegan restauranteering. Presently, the difference in education between programs is vast and the award of a certificate versus a diploma to certify the training is not consistent. As this trend in culinary training rises, the certification and accreditations of plant-based training programs is sure to standardize.