In the past decade, something revolutionary has happened in Los Angeles’ food scene. Across the city vegan-friendly eateries have sprouted en masse.
Today there are thousands of restaurants with meat- and dairy-free options in L.A. The movement has been so striking, so deeply and far felt, that on Tuesday, May 15, Los Angeles transcended its former reputation as being a notable vegan-friendly town among a laundry list of others. In an intimate gathering at Moby’s Silver Lake bistro, Little Pine, PETA officials crowned L.A. as the Most Vegan-Friendly City in the United States.
Lisa Lange, the animal advocacy organization’s senior vice president, who bit into a Hollwood Sign–themed salad at the event, tells L.A. Weekly why the City of Angels has ascended higher than all others on the 2018 list.
“Los Angeles is clearly vegan heaven, where you can find every type of vegan ethnic cuisine that you could think of,” Lange says. “Almost every spot offers vegan options, and those are expanding all the time.”
Indeed, from the meat- and dairy-free lunch programs now at dozens of local schools to the eclectic food offerings at food trucks, ballparks and grocers, there seems to be a sweeping array of food options for vegan Angelenos. At Magpies Softserve, for instance, you can indulge your sweet tooth with dairy-free ice cream. In retrospect, things are a far cry from how they were just 20 years ago, when many L.A. restaurants, and those across the country, weren’t on the vegan food train.
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Times have indeed changed, namely due to the literal changing tastes of many locals. "What led me to adopt a vegan lifestyle is simply that I love animals and don't want to contribute to their suffering in any way,” Moby said before L.A.’s coronation.
“Angelenos know that you can also help the planet by reducing your carbon footprint and lower your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, cancer and so many other health issues by eating this way," he added. "Vegan eating is really a magic bullet that solves so many of today's problems in one bite."
Also on PETA’s 2018 list are New York; San Francisco; Minneapolis; Portland, Oregon; Detroit; Cleveland; Omaha, Nebraska; Miami; and Kansas City, Missouri.