What is Plant Forward?
Plant Forward is an event series that we have created to bridge the gap between the foodie culture and the vegan culture, and we’re building the foundations of that bridge right here in Dallas, Texas. We do this by showcasing local chefs, and their restaurants, who can create amazing meals and experiences and who love the challenge of going in a direction that they don’t normally go. This requires a level of creativity and adventure seeking that we feel many chefs in Dallas have, but don’t take advantage of enough. When you require a chef to remove the protein, from which they normally build a dish and it’s flavors around, we believe you also remove the boundaries. We also love this because you also remove the detriment caused by animal based proteins. We collaborate with non-vegan chefs (we like to call them “future vegan chefs”) and plan a gourmet meal that can be enjoyed by anyone who loves food. Our goal is to reach non-vegans (future vegans) and vegans alike. This is a fun and exciting way to introduce people to a plant centric lifestyle and we are proud and excited that it has been a big hit so far. In this blog we will discuss the results and take aways so far.
Plant Forward Dinner and Cocktail Pairing
Our first Plant Forward dinner was at a local favorite of ours that’s right next to our home in the Bishop Arts District at a famous wood fire grill called Stock & Barrel. We approached the creative head chef Jon Stevens, after being pleasantly surprised when we curiously dined there at the incredible quality of food and already existing plant based options they had on their menu. We knew taking our passion and interest for more awareness of vegan options in Dallas to collaborate with Jon in highlighting his creativity for an exclusive four-course plant based dinner event would be whole new opportunity to combine our animal activism and foodie desires.After working with Jon to show off the menu he created for our event, we marketed to both local vegans and Dallas foodie and craft cocktail enthusiasts to come try a night new flavor combinations that they couldn’t find anywhere else.
By leveraging our already existing group of local vegan peers to give Stock & Barrel, a largely “meat-centric” restaurant, a second look for unique plant based dishes, we are opening the doors for Jon and his staff cater to a new market and bring in more vegan foodie profit. In the process of our marketing, we also targeted Stock & Barrel’s already existing clientele to try a more “Plant Forward” meal and ditch the meat and dairy for a night.
The event was filled with a variety of guests that came hungry and left full of incredibly delicious food and a new sense of living a more plant based lifestyle.
After evaluating the positive feedback from our guests, we had the opportunity to do the second edition of Plant Forward at another restaurant known for their creative and unique dishes on Lower Greenville, called Clark Food & Wine Co. The head chef and co-owner Randall Warder, was also excited and eager to take on a new culinary challenge of creating a four-course plant based dinner and cocktail pairing. Without previously trying Clark Food & Wine Co’s plant based options, we were throughly impressed with the menu he drew up for our exclusive dinner and knew our following would be in for a treat.
Plant Forward 2.0
Once again, we drew in guests from all backgrounds to enjoy a night of flavorful “plant forward” dishes that had them impressed and excited to approach a vegan lifestyle from a new perspective.
From these two events, we aim to grow stronger in numbers and extend our reach to more non-vegan restaurants and foodies that are willing to take a night to have a whole new culinary experience. We have been encouraged and asked by our precious guests to have more events throughout the Dallas Fort Worth region and beyond to continue to raise awareness of how delicious vegan food is and how eating out while seeking less meat and dairy is becoming more accessible and easy.
If you want more details on the amazing menus and the events themselves from our Plant Forward at Stock & Barrel and Clark Food & Wine Co., read all about it on our great friend Christina’s blog, Kind Gourmet!