Richmond Nabs a Spot on PETA’s Top 10 Most Vegan-Friendly Cities List

Health- and Animal-Friendly Food a Rising Star in Tobacco Capital

For Immediate Release:
June 7, 2013

Kaitlynn Kelly 202-483-7382

Richmond, Va. — There’s more than a note of irony in the fact that Richmond, long a focal point of the not-so-health-friendly tobacco industry, has become a mecca for delicious vegan food. That’s why PETA has named the city one of the Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities, grabbing the number 10 spot on a list kicked off by Paul McCartney, who presented winner Austin, Texas, with the Most Vegan-Friendly City award in person. If you’re looking for healthy and animal-friendly food, you’ve come to the right place—the city that lures in vegetarians from near and far every June for the Richmond Vegetarian Festival.

“Richmond’s bustling vegan scene is no longer a well-kept secret,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “When it comes to top-shelf food that’s as kind to your health as it is to animals, Richmond is holding its own with the largest cities in the country—including New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago.”

Phoenix Garden offers a variety of picture-perfect dishes, including marinated veggie drumsticks, faux beef with curry rice, and Vietnamese-style veggie omelet pancakes—all of which were recently featured as the restaurant’s entrées of the week. Step over to the Harrison Street Café and bite into a barbecued tofu or beer-battered tofu-steak sandwich, and you’ll be hooked. You can’t go wrong with the beautifully prepared chorizo wrap, the vegan Reuben, or the fried polenta Napoleon at Ipanema, and if street vendors are your thing, you’ll want to seek out the Rooster Cart and try the Rooster, a red-chili mock-rooster sandwich with scallions, cucumbers, and cabbage.

Not to be missed are the curried faux-chicken salad and fried artichoke hearts at 821 Café. Late-nighters, vegans and nonvegans alike, will enjoy Strange Matter, a live-music venue that doubles as an arcade featuring several cruelty-free foods, including Uncle Paul’s Vegan Mango Donut Holes.

Rounding out PETA’s Top 10 Vegan-Friendly Cities list are Los Angeles; Portland, Ore.; New York; Chicago; Seattle; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; and Boulder, Colo.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind