Vegan Foods

India’s first all-vegan food court opens in Chennai, two more to open soon


08 December 2021

Chennai is one of the many cities adopting veganism faster than ever. India’s first fully vegan food court recently opened in Chennai. Cafe 28 Chennai is managed by Dhaval Chandarana. Earth Story, a fully vegan business in collaboration with Kalpavrukshapazhamudhir Nilayam and Green Goddesses, kicked off the opening with a vegan festival.

This is no ordinary vegan food court, as you will find a variety of delicacies here. The food court is home to food stalls hosted by many small vegan businesses in partnership with Cafe 28 Chennai. From cold-pressed juices and tiramisu brownies, to smoothies, burgers, pizza, vegan shawarmas, Malaysian street food, gelatos and more!

TO MAKE CHENNAI THE MOST VEGAN PLACE IN INDIA

It’s amazing how there are so many vegan food companies in Chennai. Besides the food, the cafe also recently held a clothing drive where people could drop off clothes and fabrics that are no longer in use. This collaboration with India Wasted, a startup that offers 360 waste management solutions, allows people to come to the Café and drop off their old or unused clothes. The cafe also recently hosted an Open Mic night where art lovers could come and share the platform for stand-up, music, art, theater and poetry.

“Cafe 28 Chennai was so spontaneous. I’ve wanted to open a vegan cafe for a very long time, and I have to say the opportunity just presented itself and I didn’t want to miss it. It took about a month to set up the venue and put the brands at ease with the store and the space. When Kalpavrukshapazhamudhir Nilayam reached out to me with the pitch, my only word was that everything should be vegan if I run it, ”says Dhaval, founder of Earth Story and Café 28 Chennai.

STEPS FROM SOME OF THE BEST VEGAN FOOD BUSINESSES IN CHENNAI

Some of the best local businesses in Chennai have set up their stalls at 28 Chennai Cafe. Apart from that, Auroville-based Gelato Factory is also part of the cafe that sells authentic Italian ice cream scoops. Gelato Factory added 18 more vegan flavors to cater to the vegan audience. Pachcha Kaththi, Chennai’s first fully vegan takeout, has a food stall that sells Indian, Indochinese, South Indian, and fusion dishes.

“There are currently five brands operating through Café 28 Chennai. They are Gelato Factory, Fabulous Lyf from Soul Garden Bistro, Wrap Man from Pachchah Kaththi, Aakariya and Eat with Lilly.

Dhaval also plans to open Earth Story soon to sell pastries, macaroons, jelly cakes and other vegan desserts. The store will be installed by Christmas or January.

Aakariya, another vegan food and beverage service in Chennai, sells healthy plant-based pizzas. The pizzas also have ragi and potato bases. Some of them contain cheese made from sunflower seeds, which makes them nut-free. If you are looking for delicious and flavorful vegan pizza, this is the place for you. Eat With Lilly sells gourmet burgers, salads, smoothies, and waffles. All their dishes are plant-based, zero cholesterol, organic and homemade.

These are some of the very few to mention. The café area aims to have more than food. The dedicated space is ready to explore the possibilities of both food and bringing together the vegan community. The cafe is located at RA Puram Chennai.

it’s more than food – a space to build a vegan community and opportunities

Cafe 28 Chennai will not be open just for food, but more. The space plans to host weekend events like pop-up shows and other food stalls to enable other vegan businesses in the city. The Café will invite chefs who can come and set up their stalls on weekends. The place also recently held a clothing donation campaign where more than 100 people entered to donate clothes to charity. Once Café 28 Chennai is established and becomes a success, Dhaval plans to open two more such cafés in Kilpauk and Nungambakkam.

You must visit Café 28 Chennai, India’s first all-vegan food court if you are in Chennai. You can also contact Cafe 28 on their Instagram to set up your own stand on the weekends!

“My only goal behind this initiative is to make Chennai the most vegan place in India,” adds Dhaval.

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