January has long been a popular time for vegan eating, even before the practice was institutionalized by Veganuary. But many people wind up abandoning the pattern before the month's over.
Maybe the solution is to get more of a running start by going vegan on New Year's Eve - and enjoying something so amazing it gives you momentum for the whole year!
Here are three places around Philadelphia doing something special that night for vegans and would-be (or as I like to say, will-be) vegans.
Flora, in Jenkintown, which I wrote up at the beginning of 2015, is still going strong and will have an extensive 6-course menu featuring Lentil Soup, Salad with Tarragon Vinaigrette & Almond Ricotta, Mushroom Pate with Pickled Pearl Onions & Spiced Walnuts, Crabless Cakes, Braised Endive Over Twelve Grain Rice and Champagne Creme Brûlé. Get more info here.
The Plough & The Stars, where Lenka Zivkovic has been making waves with her one-of-a-kind vegan creations, will feature arugula & shaved fennel salad in a chipotle champagne vinaigrette, braised seitan with mushroom pate in puff pastry served with fresh spinach and a pinor noir au jus, plus a dessert combo of raw vegan vanilla custard creme brulee and raspberry truffle in a chocolate cup. Check it out here.
Meanwhile, Strangelove's, one of a growing number of Philly bars that often features vegan offerings, has a vegan alternative lineup for its special NYE menu, including Vegan Walnut Pecan Terrine, Vegetable Strudel with mushrooms and cabbage, and Vegan Coconut Chocolate Pot de Creme. Pricing and other info here.
The blurb notes that "This night is perfect for long neglected Vegans! Perfect for people who love beer! And especially designed for folks (like us) who just can't spend one more New Year's wishing there was a way to celebrate without having to suffer throngs of drunk idiots."
Can't argue with that, and all of these sound like excellent alternatives to same. But are there more? If you know one, email me and I'll update this entry, right up to the afternoon of New Year's Eve.
UPDATE 12/29: The casually elegant Sprig & Vine in New Hope is doing a New Year's Eve special that includes celery-root bisque, roasted beet, purple haze carrot with chermoula-chickpea salad, porcini-seared tofu with a leek & maitake mushroom-cashew cream sauce, and pumpkin bread pudding. Get the full menu, pricing and other details here.
Also, Miss Rachel's Pantry in South Philly will be doing a special New Year's Even dinner, but it has already sold out. It's worth noting, though, that the cafe will be open on New Year's Day from 11 am to 4 pm "with lots of goodies and a free cup of organic Green Street coffee for dine-in guests." 215-798-0053.