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12 vendors you need to try at Eat Drink Vegan 2018

Written by
Jarone Ashkenazi

The annual vegan food and beverage festival Eat Drink Vegan takes place this Saturday, May 26, at the Rose Bowl and the adjacent Brookside Golf Course. Originally conceived by Goldenvoice’s Nic Adler, a vegan and the co-owner of iconic Roxy Theatre, the event began as a small gathering in the Roxy parking lot and has turned into huge festival that hosts 10,000 hungry attendees annually.

The fest features a highly curated selection of 100 restaurants and food vendors, 250-plus beverages and a plant-based marketplace that showcases clothing, candles, packaged foods, skin care and more. Along with local and other national vegan favorites, Adler and team have curated a variety of international vegan concepts as well, including Temple of Seitan from the UK, Charly’s Vegan Tacos from Mexico and the Dutch Burger from the Netherlands.

If you’re heading out to this weekend’s event, these are the 12 vendors you need to visit.

Donna Jean

Photograph: Courtesy Lindsay Kriegbaum @cravedanddiffused

Donna Jean, named after chef Roy Elam’s mom, is a San Diego restaurant (slated to come to L.A. in January 2019) that introduces a form of plant-based cuisine that even the most stubborn meat eaters can appreciate. At EDV, Donna Jean will serve their popular Nashville Hot Shrooms and two types of pizzas, the ‘Rita and the Thunderkiss ’65.

The Vurger Co.

Photograph: Courtesy the Vurger Co.

After months of collaboration with famous vegan chef Chloe Coscarelli, the Vurger Co. will be serving a special Chloe’s Truffle CheeseVurger at Eat Drink Vegan. Available one day only, the burger is a truffle shroom patty with caramelized onion jam and oozing with truffle cheese and smashed avocado. Those at the festival in the afternoon will be able to meet Coscarelli for a book signing.

The Herbivorous Butcher

Photograph: Courtesy the Herbivorous Butcher

America’s first vegan butcher shop, the Herbivorous Butcher is located in Minneapolis and this year makes their second trip to EDV. They’ll be serving a Country Fried Steak Double Down sandwich which includes two pieces of country fried ribeye steaks as the patty, hickory bacon, eggy tofu and country gravy, which contains their all-American breakfast sausage—all meat-and-cheese—free, of course.

Berben & Wolff’s

Photograph: Courtesy Joseph Berben

Berben & Wolff's was founded in 2015 by Joey Berben and Max Wolf, and just a year later they opened an entirely vegan deli in their home city of Albany, New York. With an evolving menu of classics and specials, they are bringing their Wing Burger Sliders, Reuben sandwich and the Latke Fry Poutine topped with smoked porcini gravy, cashew cream, herbs and truffle salt. 

Cena Vegan

Photograph: Courtesy @ccsantillan

Cena Vegan will be making their third appearance at EDV, serving up their vegan tacos, big vegan burritos and totally Instagrammable nacho boats. All three items can be customized to festivalgoers’ preferences. This year, attendees can also take home one-pound packs of their four authentically-flavored plant-based meats—which recently launched in Southern California stores—including carne asada, pollo asado, al pastor and gluten-free barbacoa.

Temple of Seitan

Photograph: Courtesy Temple of Seitan

Temple of Seitan makes its EDV debut with three burgers: a ranch chicken burger, one hot chicken burger and an agave mustard chicken burger. Created in 2015 in London, the vegan fast-food business has two restaurants as well as at street food pop-ups all across London. Their most popular burger is the ranch chicken burger, which is a southern inspired fried Seitan “chicken” patty, served on a brioche bun with shredded iceberg, herby ranch mayonnaise and dill pickles.

Charly’s Vegan Tacos

Photograph: Courtesy Charly’s Vegan Tacos

This award-winning vegan restaurant in Tulum, Mexico serves authentic regional cuisine with a vegan twist. Making their EDV debut, they will be serving their Taco Love Trio, consisting of jackfruit pulled beef in green salsa, sour vegan cream, baked plantains and cured red radish; pork-less cracklings in red sauce, green avocado salsa, sour cabbage and roasted garlic aioli; and yuba carnitas, pasilla pepper adobo, toasted pumpkin seed salsa and salsa cruda. The jackfruit and yuba carnitas are event exclusives, while the pork-less cracklings won the people’s choice award at last fall’s EDV-hosted vegan taco competition. 

Jake’s Vegan Steaks


Hailing from London, this all-vegan catering company specializes in cooked-to-order seitan sandwiches dressed with a variety of toppings. Jake’s is traveling across the pond with its Classic Steak Sandwich, a crispy yet succulent seitan steak topped with melted Follow Your Heart American-style cheese, smokey caramelized onions, arugula, pickles, sriracha mayo and sweet mustard on lightly toasted ciabatta.

Sgaia Foods

Photograph: Courtesy Sgaia Foods

Sgaia Foods is bringing vegan meats all the way from Scotland to EDV. They’ll be serving two unique offerings: a Scottish breakfast bun made with vegan bacon, panko-crusted egg, haggis, hollandaise, watercress and mayo, as well as a colorful charcuterie board that includes selection of their homemade meats and cheeses.

Modern Times + Donut Friend

Photograph: Courtesy @sarahbakers

Those that love both donuts and beer are in luck as Modern Times and Donut Friend have come together for an exclusive beer and vegan collaboration dish. At EDV, the two will be debuting a Modern Times, beer-infused vegan donut burger paired with a Donut Friend-infused stout.

Afters Ice Cream

Photograph: Courtesy @aftersicecream

Afters Ice Cream, the home of the ice cream-stuffed Milky Bun, recently introduced its first non-dairy ice cream creation and vegan Milky Bun at Coachella. Following great success at the festival, they are bringing the Choco Monster Milky Bun with chocolate ice cream, housemade vegan chocolate chip cookies, Oreos, and chocolate fudge to EDV along with four other vegan flavors including Matcha, Cookie Butter, Strawberry Coconut and Mango Sorbet.

Shake Shack

Photograph: Courtesy Shake Shack

The burger stand—which now has seven locations in L.A.—will be serving its newest signature menu addition: the Veggie Shack, served vegan (no cheese) on a gluten-free bun. Shake Shack’s patty is made with black beans, brown rice and roasted beets and topped with tomato, lettuce, onions, pickles and vegan mustard mayo.

Eat Drink Vegan takes place at the Rose Bowl Stadium and Brookside Golf Course
 on Saturday, May 26. General admission tickets ($50) allow admission from 2 to 7pm and come with a four-ounce souvenir tasting glass. VIP tickets ($120) include early entry at noon, an eight-ounce tasting glass and exclusive pours and food items. All food sold separately.

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