Monday, April 16 is the opening date for HipCityVeg, a vegan fast-food cafe at 127 S. 18th St., on the block north of Rittenhouse Square that's also home to Serafina and a.kitchen.
In her ownership debut, Nicole Marquis, a former manager at the late vegan landmark Horizons, wants to make vegan grub "convenient, affordable, and delicious."
Chef Rich Landau, who transitioned from Horizons into the white-hot destination restaurant Vedge, mapped out the menu, which will be executed by chef Lauren Hooks. Landau also inspired the shop's name, Marquis said.
The Elkins Park-raised Marquis was a vegetarian steered to a vegan diet several years ago after she read The China Study by T. Colin Campbell, which extols its benefits.
"I was tired of eating hummus and falafel," she said, a common refrain. "I wanted to put Horizons into a sandwich."
Everything in the shop - and remember this is primarily takeout, except for four tables - is 100 percent recycled or compostable. Even the floor was milled from the timbers of an old schoolhouse.
The $9-and-under menu includes a veggie burger, a battered "chick'n" ranch burger, curry tofu wrap, and Landau's pride and joy, a "steak" sandwich with onions and mushrooms.