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An Open Letter To Chef Ernesto Uchimura

Dear Mr. Uchimura Sir,

I am a huge conceptual fan of yours. I have studied your menus, I’ve read countless reviews of your food and I’ve been to your restaurants and they’re all fabulous … sounding. If only I could eat there, I’d be an honest to goodness actual fan. But there’s not one single thing available at Umami Burger or Plan Check that a SuperVegan like me can eat.

I am in no way some sort of zealot, imploring you to stop serving all those meaty things you serve and or cook everything in, nor am I trying to push my special needs lifestyle on you in any way, like some sort of zealot. It’s not for you. That’s cool. To each their own, right? However, I am begging for you to be as open to me as I am to you. Please stop punishing me “then no dinner for you, Young Lady” style for doing something that sounds awfully good in lots of ways. By not being able to eat anything in your establishments I look like and feel like a total asshole. I might be an asshole, but not because I’m Vegan, swear. And in this case, I’m just trying to patronize your business by paying you dollars for food. I mean, who wouldn’t want to eat ketchup leather or wasabi flake or smoked-salt onion strings?

I understand that just because I’m interested in you doesn’t mean you feel the same about me and my complex set of food restrictions. But! You are in the business of selling food to people. I’m a people! And I’m one of a rapidly growing group of people (and celebrities) trying to do something good for animals, the planet, ourselves. Can you support that and not turn us a cold cold shoulder-cut? I know I’m asking a whole lot, but pretty please, can you chef me up one single vegan dish (hint: make your veggie burger a vegan burger!)? A side dish even. Anything! Really, I’m not picky! If it’s Vegan I’ll eat it. Just SOMETHING so that my boyfriend doesn’t have to sneak out for an Umami burger and slash or we can come to Plan Check together and I don’t have to sit there, with a big bowl of air, watching him eat his whatever and hearing about how good it is with every single bite. I know you can do it. In fact, I am certainly certain that you could, fairly easily, with those skills of yours, and ingredients you already have on hand, make something so delicious and accidentally vegan that a) it’d put specialty vegan chefs to shame and a) even your regular diners would want to eat it (like Ilan Hall’s broccoli at The Gorbals. Which all-i-vores vote the best thing on the menu). I can only imagine how good your vegan food would be. You can make my dreams real, like Oprah, but with things that grow from the ground.

Maybe you have your reasons and I could respect that if I knew what they were, OR I gladly volunteer to come over and help you figure something out.

Thanks thanks,
Your almost fan,
Andrea

2 Comments

  1. Comment by

    Andy Baio

    on #

    Definitely not the most vegan-friendly restaurant around, but you can get the edamame-and-mushroom Earth Burger without the cheese, and make sure they don’t put butter on the bun, and you can get the fries cooked in vegetable oil instead of lard. You’re out of luck at Plan Check, though.

  2. Comment by

    Andrea

    on #

    Heya Andy- They wouldn’t make me a Vegan version of the Earth Burger when I was there. They said the patty still had non-vegan ingredients as did the bun, nor would they make me some lard-free fries. Curious!

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