For vegans in the barbecue capital of the world, life keeps getting easier.
A new delivery service, Two Vegan Sistas, is now whipping up wholesome, animal-free fare and shuttling it from a commercial kitchen downtown to anywhere within a 40-mile radius.
Delivery will cost you an additional $5, but anyone jonesin' for mock chicken salad or raw vegan peanut butter pie can pick up an order directly from the kitchen and bypass the delivery fee altogether.
Owners Bretta and Belinda King began selling some of their items at Balewa's Vegan Gourmet last November, but by the end of January, they had their sights set on their own venture. Now the pair is focused on their own all-vegan, 80 percent raw menu, which includes everything from falafel and walnut steak to raw cheesecake and raw vegan oreos. And for the health-conscious, the sisters have also developed meal plans and juice regimens.
"I know that one of the things that keeps people from eating healthy is they don't like the way it tastes," Bretta says. "If they like the way it tastes, they can get all the health benefits."
Unlike ordering late-night pizza delivery on a drunken whim, anyone interested in this service should plan on ordering 24 hours in advance. While you might find Bretta and Belinda have some items already prepared when you call, the safest bet is advanced notice. Check out their menu online, and call in to order.
Two Vegan Sistas, 694 Madison (800-984-0379)
Love Shack isn't your average drive-thru: Forget cheeseburgers and French fries and start thinking protein-packed vegan smoothies, soups, artisan coffee and tea, vegan baked goods, and juices.
Owner Chris Conner has turned the former home of Vito's Cucina into a full-on juice and smoothie bar, complete with a laid-back, alternative vibe and wheatgrass growing in large trays. While the bulk of Love Shack's offerings are smoothies and juices, Conner says they will also be serving vegan nut butter sandwiches on sprouted bread and breakfast bars alongside organic coffees and teas.
A martial artist himself, Conner has developed many of the smoothies and juices for athletes, including some local UFC fighters.
Patrons interested in a smoothie meal-replacement plan or a juice detox can sign up for one of Conner's many regimens, which range in price from $140 to $240. Most of the other items, from pour-over coffee to homemade breakfast bars, will ring in under $10. The restaurant held its soft opening last week, and Conner hopes to add more menu items, including nori rolls, as Love Shack gets its footing.
Love Shack, 2886 Walnut Grove (323-2288)
Imagine Vegan Cafe, the first all-vegan restaurant in Memphis, will soon be pulling up stakes and moving to a new location, though the owners hope to stay in the Cooper-Young neighborhood.
"We don't really know what happened," says Kristie Jeffrey, who owns the restaurant with her husband, Adam. "The rent was going to go up by 10 percent, and there's just no way we could afford that. Not someone as small as us."
Jeffrey says they've already secured another building at 2299 Young Avenue, the former home of Fork It Over catering. Jeffrey says they will be out of their current location by March 31st.
"Things change. We're on to the next chapter," Jeffrey says. "We fell in love with a little building, and it's really, really close. It will be a cozy home atmosphere. We always want people to feel like Imagine is their second home."
Imagine Vegan Cafe, 2156 Young (654-3455)