Veganism’s march into the hearts, minds and mouths of the Western world continues unabated, with one of the big players on the US scene to set up shop in Covent Garden in January. By Chloe are banking on the vegan-friendly grub that made the brand a New York favourite working just as well in the UK, while tacking on some exclusive new dishes for the London crowds.
But what can we expect from the team behind the fast-casual restaurant group, in what will be their first international outpost? Why did they choose London, and will the latest plant-based stab at the eating out market bring something new?
Gobble, gobble, veggie, vegan
Styled very much by healthy eating and nutritional trends, By Chloe is centred around providing a freshly prepared, chef-driven vegan menu “with no compromise on flavour, taste or satisfaction.”
With nine current sites and two more on the way across four US cities, the all-day menu features such highlights as the vegan and gluten-free sweet potato mac and cheese, and the pomegranate avocado toast.
One eye is kept on the gluttonous here too: the brand's recent Thanksgiving burger, titled the Gobble Gobble, constituted a stack of lemon-caper seitan, sautéed kale, rosemary gravy, harvest stuffing and fresh cranberry sauce on a potato bun.
The slow demise of fast food has been well documented, with the healthy, fast-casual trend seriously gathering pace. So much so that even McDonald's trialled the McVegan last month in an attempt to halt the slowly shifting pendulum of power.
By Chloe are right on the money here, championing the decadent vegan boom with aplomb in key trend-maker metropolises such as New York and Los Angeles. Just consider the Whiskey BBQ: smoky portobello mushrooms and seitan, onion marmalade, grilled pineapple, sautéed kale, bourbon BBQ and that potato bun.
How’s that for a slice of fried gold?
The time is now
“When By Chloe first opened, we were at the tipping point for the explosion of vegan dining options in NYC, and we feel that the appetite for plant-based food has now reached that same point in London,” Samantha Wasser, By Chloe's co-founder and president, tells Food Spark.
“We feel London is a great fit for our first international location. The thriving dining scene, the culture and the fashion all make London the ideal city, filled with diners with a growing curiosity for vegan and plant-based cuisine.
“We offer a diverse menu of wholesome plant-based foods, from burgers, salads and pasta to sweets and our Chill by Chloe ice creams. Ultimately, our goal is to make plant-based eating accessible and desirable for all diners, no matter what a customer’s dietary preferences or restrictions are.”
With the ‘veggie dude food’ phase of vegetarianism quickly gathering pace, coupled with the number of UK vegans rising 360 percent over the last 10 years, By Chloe’s arrival in London seems nothing but perfectly timed.
After all, who could resist so many bad-looking healthy things all in one place?