Restaurant Industry Goes Plant-Based
Let’s talk about rising stars in the food world.  

In the gourmet restaurant industry, there’s Matthew Kenney, a well-known celebrity chef, author, and speaker who specializes in plant-based cuisine. In the fast-casual restaurant industry (think Panera, Noodles & Company), there’s Veggie Grill. Ever heard of these trailblazers? It won’t be long before both are household names. And both serve 100-percent meatless cuisine. 
Mainstream, Trendy Plant-Based Cuisine 
Matthew Kenney opened a number of eateries around the New York area, attracting the likes of trendy locals, models, and celebrities as a part of his daily clientele with his noticeably meatless menus. Kenney is a pioneer in health-conscious cuisine—earlier this year he opened Double Zero, a highly revered vegan pizza hangout in New York’s East Village, and launched a raw restaurant in Miami’s trendy Wynwood Arts District to mirror his LA-based Plant Food and Wine. His booming restaurant business complements a portfolio of other operations under his namesake, Matthew Kenney Cuisine, which features everything from nut-based cheeses to hospitality food services in schools and hospitals. You can find Kenney’s meat-free movement successful not only down the grocery aisle, but also within the high-end restaurant business that’s perhaps best known for escargot, filet mignon, and duck confit. Kenney is changing the norm. 
McDonald’s New Competition 
Arguably one of the biggest new entrants to American fast food is a plant-based chain (that’s right, they don’t even use beef in their cheeseburger!) called Veggie Grill. Known by some for tacos better than Taco Bell, burgers better than In-N-Out, and salads better than Panera, Veggie Grill is on the verge of redefining an entire industry. Featuring a menu of 100-percent plant-based options, they’re redefining plant-based food and reaching carnivorous Americans by serving approachable, convenient, healthy, fast, affordable, and delicious food. With operations on the West Coast, they’re set to expand nationwide and double in size by 2020 after a recent $22 million investment. According to Business Insider  Steve Heeley, Veggie Grill’s CEO, mentioned they would likely expand to the Midwest and East Coast next. Prepare yourself—crispy Buffalo cauliflower bites are coming your way! 
Plant-based options are finding their way across the country, whether you’re looking for a healthy, ethical, and delicious date night or a quick bite to eat with friends that also happens to be healthy, ethical, and delicious. Remember the names: Matthew Kenney and Veggie Grill will surely please your palate...and your conscience. 
Want to help grow the future of sustainable, ethical, and delicious food even more quickly? Support The Good Food Institute’s commitment to this cause here. We’re working around the clock to ensure our food system is the way it should be. Learn more here.

Image credit to Kerstin Kühn of La Goulue.  

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