Vegansaurus Obsesses About Pi Bar So We Don't Have To

pi-bar-interior

Coming soon: you failing to get some random play over a Tecate and slice of mushroom-black olive

In the post-American Apparel / Mr. Pickles era of Mission blogging, authors are desperate for controversial material to fill our lonely pages.  Luckily, the upcoming “Pi Bar” seems to be providing the necessary blogging fodder.  Since mid June, the new restaurant has had to endure a protest of vegans, a little bit of controversy surrounding the painted-over Suriya Thai mural, and even had to publicly address their neighbors (sounds familiar?).  And the general buzz?  3 posts on vegansaurus!, 3 on Burrito Justice, 5 on Eater SF, 3 on SFoodie, and countless other posts elsewhere.  If blogging was real life, you would have to wait 2 months to get a table.

Clearly, we are missing out on something here.

To bring you up the speed, vegansaurus! has been taking the investigative lead on this topic.  If you have not been acquainted with vegansaurus! yet, it is a quirky Mission-based food blog about eating cupcakes and calling people assholes in caps lock.  vegansaurus! recently placed a phone call to the new establishment to pressure them into making vegan pizza when they accidently uncovered a nefarious plot to open in a few weeks:

“Thank you for calling Pi Bar. We’re looking forward to a mid-August, early September opening; look for us then. Thanks for calling!”

That is pretty much verbatim with some license taken in the fact that we are lazy and didn’t want to call back to get it verbatim, you dig? (link)

(By the way, my post count about “Pi Bar” is now at 2.  I love being a part of something.)

111 Responses to “Vegansaurus Obsesses About Pi Bar So We Don't Have To”

  1. suckerpunch says:

    God, I so want to open a ‘working man’s’ hamburger/hot dog/chili joint, with NO vegan options available, just so I can say “no vegan options available here” when asked.

    Some day…

    • foon says:

      Is there really a shortage of places without vegan options? I don’t think the world is crying out for more.

      • suckerpunch says:

        It’s my feeling that if you make the choice to limit what you will eat, you also automatically limit the places you can eat. That’s all.

      • foon says:

        Logically you’re right, if I eat a subset of everything anyone eats then I can only eat at a subset of the places serving food. But what’s wrong with me trying to expand that subset? The restaurant makes more money, I get more to eat, everyone is happy except you for some reason.

      • Becky says:

        Why would you deny any demographic food at a restaurant? I don’t think elitism would really benefit a food establishment.

      • Slappy says:

        @Becky: Seriously? So, do you get pissed off when you go to Chinese food and they don’t serve Italian food?

        Suckerpunch says it all: One makes a choice, one lives with the choice…the rest of the world does not need to accommodate that choice. Period.

      • “@Becky: Seriously? So, do you get pissed off when you go to Chinese food and they don’t serve Italian food?

        Suckerpunch says it all: One makes a choice, one lives with the choice…the rest of the world does not need to accommodate that choice. Period.”

        That is the post ridiculous argument ever. One is asking a restaurant to serve a different type of food, the other is asking them to respect a dietary restriction. Restaurants are known for accommodating people who are kosher, lactose intolerant, etc. There is nothing groundbreaking about restaurants making menu items that are vegan or responding to special requests from other people with dietary concerns.

      • Becky says:

        It’s not a completely different kind of food, it’s just substituting ingredients. I don’t get pissed off, and no one is being forced to serve things that they don’t want to serve, but there is really no harm in asking for vegan cheese.

  2. Juan says:

    I see those bullying mobster vegans have also forced Anthony’s to offer a “vegan cookie.” Poor Anthony probably died a little inside when he agreed to that. You’re a baker that’s labored for years to perfect your recipes and techniques, choosing your ingredients carefully after much trial-and-error. Then, under the vague threat of a patchouli-scented protest outside your shop, you agree to start selling butter-free cookies.

    • Laura! says:

      Yes, the bullying mobster vegans. We have SO MUCH POWER!! Pretty soon we’ll have ONE VEGAN OPTION ON EVERY MENU IN THE FAUX-LIBERAL CITY OF SAN FRANCISCO! OH THE POWER! BWAHAHAHAHA!

      Oh also, I heard it was an omni who convinced Anthony to offer vegan cookies. One of your own, what will you do now!? Witch hunt!

      • Juan says:

        I’m sorry. I really don’t like blog aggro and I obviously started some with my ill-advised/asshole-ish comment. I shouldn’t have used words meant to provoke. I apologize.

        I guess I was inspired to be mean because I hate the idea of a craftsman/cook/business owner feeling the need to veer from his/her vision of what their place can be because of some vocal constituencies. [Note: Although I know and like Anthony, and hit his shop a lot, I don't know his true feelings about vegan cooking. Another reason my comment was ill-advised].

        If you make something and believe in it, you should be sell to do whatever the hell you want. If you are Herbivore or Cafe Gratitude, no one should tell you you ought to sell “one or two meat dishes” so that certain people can have that option. If you make pizzas and you don’t WANT or like like to make vegan versions, you shouldn’t feel the need to, just because a website tells its readers to call you and demand it. This town is big enough that everyone (vegans, vegetarians) can have options. If someone believes in their menu enough to not want to change it to please popular opinion, their food is probably pretty good. And maybe they’ll fail because they’ll be giving up all that vegan money, or maybe not. It’s not up to me to decide.

      • foon says:

        For the record, Herbivore and Gratitude do get that request. I’ve been there with people who have taken them to task about it, much to my chagrin. But the patron has the right to ask, and the restaurant has the right to refuse, just as Anthony’s and Pi do.

        I will add though that it is a very rare meat eater who is morally or constitutionally unable to eat a meal with no animal products. Vegan food is the lowest common denominator; as such, it’s easier and more likely to be profitable for an omnivorous restaurant to have a vegan dish than for a vegan restaurant to have a meat dish.

      • Laura! says:

        Hey Juan, thanks for the follow up. Agreed with Foon on all accounts and I’ll add that nobody held a gun to Anthony’s head. He doesn’t HAVE to make vegan cookies, he is choosing to. And that’s cool for us vegans. My boyfriend lives a couple doors from Anthony’s and we’ve asked the staff for vegan options before and they’ve been nothing but super friendly about it. Also, before they opened, Anthony was often out front and would always comment on how cute my dog is (she is hella cute) and give her scratches so i am predisposed to like him, vegan cookies or not. Of course, vegan cookies are a huge perk and I can’t wait!

      • eva says:

        hello a bit late to the game, but for the record, anthony was really excited when my (omni) friend and him discussed the possibility of selling vegan cookies. per jen’s comment, seems he still is. is it a profit making scheme or a chance to perfect a new recipe? either way, it’s awesome.

    • Becky says:

      It makes sense not to have vegan options at a steak house or cheese parlor, but the ingredients definitely exist to create a delicious cookie (or pizza for that matter). If you are such a genius baker that is so perfectly wonderful at your craft that you open a restaurant, you can make a vegan cookie.

      • Slappy says:

        Again with the catering to the whims of the vegan? Dude, seriously, the vegans have chosen to eat a particular way, they can make requests, but, this sense of entitlement is just absurd.

        Have you considered the costs to the business owner who to accommodate an acknowledged small number of people has to have a separate set of ingredients, spend additional time preparing things and making sure they’re sterile, because god forbid the vegan ingredients touch a non-vegan ingredient, etc.

        And last I checked, there aren’t a lot of recipes available to make ONE cookie.

        Make a polite request, everyone has that right, but, lose the entitlement vibe.

      • foon says:

        Here’s a recipe to make one cookie. I just came up with it.

        (1) Find a recipe to make two dozen cookies.
        (2) Divide all the ingredients by two dozen.

    • Jen says:

      I think “forced” is tricky. I stopped by Anthony’s last night to buy cookies (totally non-vegan, double chocolate, “add fifty pounds to my ass now that I work in Bernal and walk by it every day” cookies), and he gave me a new peanut butter one to try. While we were hanging out discussing the peanut butter cookie, he mentioned the vegan cookie that he’s been scheming up. He actually seemed really jazzed about it. I think the kid likes a challenge. You can still choose your ingredients carefully after trial and error when you’re going with vegan ingredients. Knowing Anthony, it’s going to be fabulous. His feeling is that he’s going to make a gourmet cookie that also happens to be vegan.

      All this coming from someone who has never attempted to make a single vegan dish, ever. My brownies probably end up with steak in them.

  3. Laura! says:

    It’s called almost every restaurant in the United States, ASSHOLE.

  4. mariamargarita says:

    It’s not just cupcakes. Its also fries and food made in crock pots.

  5. zinzin says:

    um. why WOULDN’T a business offer vegan options? i mean, barring a butcher shop, it seems silly to leave the vegan dollars on the table.

    the idea is to MAKE MONEY, right? so if you can concoct a vegan option (no matter how much it might make you bleed or cry o whatever)…and sell it at a profit…? why WOUNDN’T you?

    that said, i know the guys who own pi bar, and i’m not surprised if they’re reticent to depart from their plans.

    (that said, what would it be? soy cheese pizza? does that stuff even melt? cheese-less? is that even pizza? maybe there’s a vegan pizza recipe i don’t know? anyone?)

    • _six6six_ says:

      Maybe in some cases, real chefs don’t want to waste time on fake food?
      Besides, if they are taking the time & putting up the money to open a restaurant, the menu is (should be) theirs to craft as they see fit.

      • Becky says:

        It doesn’t even necessarily have to be about “fake food.” Not offering a single vegan option, to me, is just being lazy, and shows that the chef lacks the creativity to leave out meat and dairy and still create a delicious meal. It truly is not that difficult.

      • Slappy says:

        “It truly is not that difficult.” Have you ever worked in a restaurant? Do you understand that a menu needs to be prepared for broad appeal, within a particular budget, and to fit the style of the restaurant.

        It’s not lazy, it’s a business decision. If there were enough of a demand, a good business person would meet it. Clearly judging by the paucity of options, it is not.

        And it is a bad business person who prepares something in the vague hope that someone might cruise by and decide to purchase it.

    • mark says:

      yeah soy cheese or no cheese. i really like cheeseless pizza as long as it’s loaded with enough toppings (especially carmelized onions), but i had a fake cheese one at amici’s recently that was pretty good too. if you get the right kind of fake cheese, it totally melts and is downright tasty.

      and you’re right, offering a vegan option is money in the bank, especially in this area. i don’t think restaurants should be forced into having vegan dishes, but i don’t see anything wrong with telling a place, “if you make something we can eat, we will give you money in exchange for it.”

      being hateful toward vegans (suckerpunch) is tired.

      • suckerpunch says:

        I don’t hate vegans. I just don’t want to cook for them.

      • Laura! says:

        zinzin – if you google vegan pizza recipe, you get about a million and a half hits. sometimes i make pizza with no cheese and tons of delicious veggies and sometimes i make it with some of the new vegan cheeses on the market, like teese and cheezly (the kind they use at amici’s). OH! And check out the newest vegan cheese on the market, daiya! It melts and stretches and is low in fat and made from cassava, not chemicals. it’s way better for you than cow cheese and it tastes delicious! Tons of pizza restaurants in LA are using it now and it’s getting crazy good reviews…check out quarrygirl.com for more info on that. if you know the owners of the pi bar, tell them to give me an email at laura@veganusaurs.com if they want some ideas on how to get awesome vegan options on the menu. they don’t have to but yeah, we’d love it and i think they’d find that lactose intolerant folks and people who want healthier options would be stoked to!

        mark – well said! thank you for putting it better than i can/did!

    • henry says:

      I worked with a Sicilian family who runs many pizza shops and the matriarch of the family was lactose intolerant. She had devised lots of vegan recipes that were delicious…and I’m not vegan. As for vegan pizza, a well crafted sauce goes a long way toward bringing out the flavors of all ingredients. Cheap cheese has a tendency to cover flavor but most places use crap ingredients anyway, so cheese does them a favor. That said, I love a good pizza covered in cheese but I can certainly appreciate the vegan option and would gladly spend money on it sometimes.

      To those whining about vegans…don’t you have to run off an complain about hipsters in another thread?

      • foon says:

        Let’s not forget that the most original pizza of all, the pizza marinara, is naturally vegan. For all cuisines but pizza especially, a vegan option is not “fake food” and shouldn’t be any sort of stretch for the chefs.

      • davey says:

        lactose intolerant people = not vegans = not easily as pigeonholed = harder to hate on.

    • kelly says:

      Because it makes no economic sense to waste time and money to offer things to less than 1% of a population.

      I mean maybe in your magical world people can just snap their fingers and bam! vegan option. In real life where, there are opportunity costs to everything.

  6. Ugh says:

    Maybe people not in the restaurant industry should just keep their vegan mouths shut before they even try to say what options an establishment should offer. Why don’t you just stick to Herbivore down the street.

  7. Sam says:

    Here is a brilliant idea: open your own vegan pizza restaurant.

    Note, I am NOT being sarcastic.

    • meave says:

      That is brilliant, we should do it for every such restaurant. Separate but equal WE ARE THE NEW CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT.

      Laura you can be Rosa Parks.

  8. teamawesome says:

    COMMENT FIIIIGGHHHT!

  9. Laura! says:

    Ugh – if we don’t ask for stuff, we won’t get it. it’s stupid to keep our mouths shut. when you want something, you need to make it be known. that’s how life works. and i’ll go to herbivore but it’s nice to have options and as mentioned above, it’s money in the bank!

    Sam – Um, yeah you are and I call passive aggressive bullshit. I work in a non-profit job that I love and don’t really want to open a pizza restaurant. If I want to have vegan pizza in one of the most progressive, open-minded cities in the United States, I have to open a restaurant myself? Actually, take it a step further, if I want to even ask for vegan options and their availability in a restaurant that is block away from where I live, I get internet attacked by people being all, “NO WAY MEAT 4EVA DEATH TO VEGANS OPEN YOUR OWN DAMN RESTAURANT AND SHUT UP.”

    You’re all obviously awesome and brilliant. Let’s go on a group date!

    • jimbeam says:

      Why is anyone fighting about this? Ask for the option. If they give it to you, great, if not, too bad. End of story.

      Why does anyone else care?

      • zinzin says:

        thank you for that refreshing breath of reasonable air.

        we can always count on you jb!

      • Laura! says:

        jimbeam – good question, why does anyone but vegans care about the fact that vegans are asking for vegan options? i am seriously interested in that one.

      • mark says:

        exactly.

        it’s something to get worked up about.

        and hating on vegans, while tired, is still kind of popular.

      • Slappy says:

        Because, Laura!, it’s one thing to ask, it’s another thing to protest about it. Seriously, they protest a local restaurant. How about reading over to Richmond and protesting Chevron, or downtown to protest Bechtel or something that actually freaking matters.

      • foon says:

        Slappy–really? When did this protest happen? As far as I can tell this is just vegans asking more or less politely, and busybodies like you getting pissed off about it. Can you post a picture of the picket line or something cause I’m really amazed I didn’t hear about the protest.

  10. zinzin says:

    reason to punt on offering vegan option at a pizza place (other than art / menu purity – which i get):

    make a pie, sell maybe one vegan slice, throw the rest away due to lack of interest.

    that’s enough of a deterrent, given the extremely slim margin in the food biz.

    and i wasn’t inferring vegan pizza to be “fake food”. i don’t care what you all eat.

    • Laura! says:

      zinzin – that’s not true. amici’s sells vegan pizza out the wazoo and there are many pizzerias in nyc who make a good portion of their living off vegans. ask vinnie’s in brooklyn. if you build it, we will come. capiche? see what i did just there? amazing.

      • zinzin says:

        um, yeah. amazing. listen, i hope they DO make vegan pizza. i’m just sayin…that potential risk could be a deterrent.

    • redbearded says:

      Zinzin, you can indeed call it fake food. Soy mozzarella is disgusting and unholy!

      • EH says:

        I would say that anybody who refers to food using animal-product-derived words is not a vegan at all. Vegan cheese, soy mayo, fake sausage…these terms include the words of animal murderers, perpetuating their violence and poor ethics toward our living brethren.

        Stop the hate.

  11. P3ZO says:

    This is a great idea. Let’s dilute the business of those eating establishments that do cater to vegans by forcing other eating establishments to expand the market with more vegan options. I bet the folks at Herbivore just LOVE this idea!

    • foon says:

      Frankly the folks at Herbivore could use the competition.

      • P3ZO says:

        Let’s protest Herbivore for serving crappy vegan food!

      • Yeah, Herbivore isn’t exactly an epicenter of awesome.

      • Slappy says:

        Personally, I don’t understand why Herbivore doesn’t have any meat dishes available.

      • foon says:

        Slappy, have you actually read the comment thread here or are you just cherry-picking things to complain about? Herbivore has been asked to provide meat dishes. They choose not to, as is their right. Similarly, Pi is being asked to provide vegan dishes. If they choose not to, that is their right. What is the issue?

    • Becky says:

      I’m not really sure if that’s how that works.

      • P3ZO says:

        How do you think it works?

      • Becky says:

        Well saying that is suggesting that vegans only eat out at Herbivore and that there aren’t already other vegan options at other restaurants, and that omnivores don’t eat at Herbivore, and that people would stop eating at Herbivore if other restaurants had a single vegan option on their menu.

      • P3ZO says:

        I am only suggesting that forcing places to serve vegan that otherwise would not has a detrimental impact on those places that do want to cater to vegans. If there are more shopping choices for vegans, then they are less likely to funnel money to those establishments that once were the only game in town.

      • Becky says:

        Couldn’t you also argue that Pi Bar will run other pizza places out of business? Or that offering pizza at Delfina will dilute Pi Bar’s pizza craft?

        Also if a few vegan options here and there run Herbivore into the ground, maybe they should start rethinking their business strategies, like making some food that isn’t totally mediocre.

      • P3ZO says:

        way to miss the point. as to your first argument, nobody is standing in front of Pi demanding that they make pizza. As to your second argument, Herbivore is only being used as an example of an establishment that actually wants to cater to vegan eaters (whether they do a good job at that is beside the point). The only point I am making, and which you fail to accept, is that by forcing those who do not want to cater to vegans to serve vegan food, you hurt those establishments that actually do want to cater vegans.

      • Becky says:

        No, I’m just saying that vegan options already exist elsewhere and it hasn’t diverted business from herbivore.

  12. Lapidgeon says:

    On this money tip. This just makes sense, taking the cheese off is about all you have to do so it would probably net them a higher profit margin if they could get away with charging the same price for it.

    Por los vegans, Couldn’t you just say “no cheese” when you order? Does it have to be specifically on the menu as being a vegan option? It seems to me in this case that the vegan option is ordering whatever veggie pizza is on the menu and then saying “no cheese” problem solved. No need to leave messages and apply pressure. Pizza is pretty much the most readily veganable thing out there. I can’t believe this is even an issue. By virtue of it being pizza this place has already met your demands as far as I can see.

    • mark says:

      well you’re right. i haven’t encountered a pizzeria that won’t make a cheeseless pizza, although some of them have looked at me funny.

      however, there’s nothing wrong with encouraging them to offer soy cheese. it could be a pretty big boost to their business. it’s not a demand, just a “hey, look at this, this might be a good idea, it will make you some more money.”

      • Lapidgeon says:

        yeah, I was never big into the “fake” meats when I was a veggie. But to each their own.

        I agree that offering the soy cheese would be easy. The only issue I see is the owners doing the math and not being sure that stocking that soy cheese is going to be paid for by the increase in vegan business. Back to my original point, is soy cheese big in the vegan community? If so, then yeah this would probably work. But if its something that only a subset of a subset would buy then it probably is a waste of money.

        That said I suppose this is a fine strategy to show them that there is demand they should supply.

      • mark says:

        agreed completely!

        i’m not big on ‘fake’ stuff either, but like anyone, sometimes (for example, when hungover) i want a pizza that tastes like it’s got cheese on it. i think there’s definitely a market for it. also, i always appreciate (and want to support) places that make a point of having an (already) vegan dish on the menu.

        but yeah, if they decide now or later that it’s not worth it, no problem. i hope they do well either way.

    • zinzin says:

      @lapidgeon – does your handle refer to the restaurant in portland?

    • foon says:

      Unfortunately some places, like Little Star (I believe) and Pauline’s, don’t automatically have vegan crusts. It would be nice to be able to depend on “no cheese”, but as it is we need assurance from the business that that’s sufficient.

      • Lapidgeon says:

        @foon – there is non vegan pizza dough? This be news to me. I always thought pizza dough was flour, water, yeast, salt, and some olive oil. Is yeast not vegan? If so that makes me sad.

      • foon says:

        Yeast is vegan–we’re not totally irrational, I promise! With Little Star (and I may be thinking of another pizza place so don’t quote me), the dough is vegan but they grease their pans with butter. Pauline’s, I’m not sure what the story is, but they must make a non-traditional dough with milk or something. All I know is their menu says if you want a vegan crust you have to request it a day ahead.

      • Lapidgeon says:

        Ah the butter on the pan. See, this is why I could never be vegan. Too many things to think about. Also, bacon.

  13. P3ZO says:

    Who wants to order anything off a menu that the cook fells FORCED to prepare and serve?

    That’s just gross.

    • mark says:

      you know we are talking about pizza here, right?

      • P3ZO says:

        sure, it’s just pizza …. with a few loogies mixed in for good measure by the pork loving cook who resents having to serve food in order to prevent misguided protesters from gathering outside.

      • foon says:

        Really? What if I come in and ask for no pork products because I’m an observant Jew? Do I still get the loogie treatment?

        A cook can be “forced” to prepare something a certain way for any number of reasons–religions, allergies, taste preferences. If he’s going to throw a big tantrum and spit in the food every time he has to modify a dish, I can’t imagine that anyone would want to eat there.

  14. Sam says:

    “Sam – Um, yeah you are and I call passive aggressive bullshit.”

    No, I am not. I am saying, if there is enough interest it could be viable. I’m not telling YOU to open it, I am saying if it’s that big a deal, someone could do it and maybe even make a living.

    Better yet another vegan restaurant. Herbivore is horrible cardboard food.

  15. zinzin says:

    observation: lot of “forcing” going on in the mission…or talk of “forcing”.

    is it me? or does anyone who wants to do anything, or buy anything, or NOT buy anything, or NOT do anything…do they all want to make a fucking movement out of it? and bend others to their will?

    and usually about things that pretty much exist in their own personal sphere and shouldn’t really be foisted? is there a little bit of an air of…um…entitlement?

    i mean, of course, everyone will have opinions & mores. but all the movements?

    anti-aa movement
    pro-development movement
    tenants rights movement
    vegan food movement
    gentrification movement
    anti-froyo movement
    pro ho movement

    is EVERYONE so passionate about EVERYTHING?

    if you dont XXXXX then i will YYYYYY!

    and usually YYYYY involves some sort of public defamation.

    maybe it’s me. but this is pizza. and we’re using the word “force”. whether or not it’s technically accurate…potentially fucked up shit there.

    • TJ says:

      I don’t think anyone here is advocating any forcing. The whole thing is just due to the way Kevin framed the scenario. Just like w/ the froyo.

      • Sean says:

        Actually, TJ, the vegansauras thugs *are* trying to force (or shame) restaurants into offering vegan selections.Well, let me rephrase: The vegansaurus whiners play the victim card, and throw temper tantrums until they get their way.

      • mark roquet says:

        huh? thugs? the victim card? trying to force restaurants? what are you talking about?

        as far as i’m aware, they called a restaurant and asked for vegan cheese. do you get this angry about everything? or are you joking?

      • zinzin says:

        i am having a great time visualizing a vegan thug. “seitan life” tattoos in old english font. fully strapped with…um…i can’t complete it but i’m giggling. i’m sure i’m the only one who would find that funny.

        and i wasn’t saying folks that call a resto to say “if you make vegan food i’ll buy it” are thugs.

        just noting an observation that so many things in the hood are posed as scandalous / life-critical and worthy of developing a movement to compel others’ behaviour when actually it’s just a personal preference that should be more or less private.

    • mark roquet says:

      you’re right, it’s pizza. i can’t believe how many comments! all about whether or not it’s ok to simply make a completely nonbinding request of a yet-to-open business. can you imagine comments like this if someone asked anthony to make a particular flavor of cookie? that’s pretty much what we’re talking about here.

      i think you have a point, but i think your complaint maybe has more to do with missionmission (sorry missionmission) and blogs in general than the majority of people that actually care about these disparate issues. at least in some of these cases. i would like someone to make vegan pizza because i want to eat it, not because of some movement or philosophy, and i certainly don’t want anyone coerced into making vegan pizza. i was opposed to a.a., but to me (and i imagine to most people) it had nothing to do with any ‘movement’ – it was just an opinion on the matter. i’m wary of anything calling itself a ‘movement’ and wary of anything that dichotomizes the world along such simplistic lines. i think a lot of people are.

      you know yourself people are quick to anger on the internet, and with all due respect, on that issue (aa), you unfairly and indiscriminately lumped people together in order to dismiss their opinions, just as people on the other side did. i don’t mean to open that can of worms again, i guess my point is people don’t necessarily see things that way, but that’s the easiest way to frame it to argue one side or the other, or to report on it in a way that gets people to argue, or in this case, leave over 50 comments about something as silly and inconsequential as cheese and pizza.

      • zinzin says:

        yes yes excellent points totally agree.

        though the aa thing – not going into the worm can either – def couched itself as a “movement”. ask chicken. ask elliott. view the rhetoric on elliott’s website. i swear he used the actual word “movement”. or “cause”.

        but yes, i agree with you on all points for the most part.

  16. Gary says:

    I’m from Hong Kong and am pissed that NO Mission taquerias have any Chinese options. I’d have a burrito if they had a Chinese version. They’re simply turning money away at the door. Insensitive assholes.

    • zinzin says:

      ya know – speaking…um…seriously for a moment – there’s a whole BUNCH of “chino latino” joints in NYC and they are one of my all time fave food types. long standing, multi-generational family places. no burritos per se…but an interesting combo.

    • johnny0 says:

      I am dying to know what would be in a Chinese burrito.

      Crispy duck? Bok Choy? Sweet and sour pork would be interesting.

      Though I forsee a serious issue – don’t know who said it originally, but:

      “Put cheese on Mexican food and it’s delicious. Put it on Chinese food and it’s disgusting.”

      • zinzin says:

        yeah. no cheese. but spicy fried rice, crispy duck, a little hoisin, some water chestnuts, maybe some gailan…or fried rice & king pao. sounds OK to me. (also, re: mushu and / or wrappers in peking duck…it aint so different).

      • Sean says:

        Yeah, cheese on Chinese food does sound kinda nasty, but the point above is well taken. I don’t know about the NYC Chi-Mex selections, but those Korean tacos with the bulgogi beef and kimchee rock. Apparently the truck is coming back. Yum-my!

  17. kwk says:

    –zinzin says, “why WOULDN’T a business offer vegan options?”
    –mark says, “offering a vegan option is money in the bank”
    –lapidgeon says, “I agree that offering the soy cheese would be easy. The only issue I see is the owners doing the math and not being sure that stocking that soy cheese is going to be paid for by the increase in vegan business.”

    All of the above was answered by Anthony Bourdain almost a decade ago in ‘Kitchen Confidential’ where he said something like how he loved vegans, he could put an entree of e.g. brocolli and mushroom risotto on the menu at $XX and they would buy it.

    So yeah, charge $15 for the soy cheese version of the $12 regular small pizza. No brainer.

    • zinzin says:

      there ya go. vegan pies, but no vegan slices. with a premium. takes out the risk for the pieman (tossing out half a vegan pie every day), and provides an apparently much needed vegan option for the…vegans.

      then of course, there’ll be picketing and a starting of the “slice equality” movement.

  18. met says:

    As a neighbor of pi bar, and an american-roman former vegan, I must say I am happy to see the opening of pi bar. My brief interactions with the owners and contracters have been nothing but lovely. I am hopeful pi bar will deliver on providing the neighborhood an alternative to the over-priced Beretta. Forza Pi Bar!

    • zinzin says:

      owners are really nice guys. experienced restaurant guys….very very committed to both quality & value.

  19. jefferson says:

    i just barfed…unfortunately it wasn’t on a vegan’s face.

  20. Laura! says:

    Sharon posts over at Vegansaurus:

    “For the record, when I was first notified by mail of this place opening, the letter I got, typed by the owners, said to stop by anytime during their remodel. So really vegansaurus is just taking them up on their offer.”

    We got the same letter too. Stopping by and requesting vegan options isn’t such a revolutionary act. I would like it noted that it’s not the vegans who are acting fucking nuts about this.

  21. Sam says:

    “I would like it noted that it’s not the vegans who are acting fucking nuts about this.”

    Except perhaps you Laura, who is doing a lot of cursing and name calling. Jeez.

    • Laura! says:

      when did i call you a name? i’m confused. i just called you out on your passive aggressive bullshit. as for the swearing, sorry i’m just naturally foul mouthed even when i’m not angry.

      • eddo says:

        For the record, Laura really is an obscenely indecent foul-mouthed tirade-laden hooker in real life. That’s why we love her.

        Also, I’m a meaty mcmeaterton omnivore (does that make me an omnisaurus, Laura?), but c’mon, 100+ comments on a simple request for a vegan option? Let’s all find our place of zen, there are bigger problems in the world…

  22. Laura! says:

    Thanks for the reasonably awesome post, eddo!

    Whether or not they serve vegan options, Pi Bar will most likely be successful. Or, what I mean to say is, their success doesn’t depend on support (or lack thereof) from the vegan community. Not one bit. The fictitious “vegan mafia” doesn’t have the power to make or break a business so please don’t take away/attack our power to ask for vegan options, especially when Pi Bar sent a letter to our houses asking us to stop by. If they don’t want to hear from us then don’t send us a letter asking to hear from us.

    Maybe this is blowing up because of Kevin’s goofy & provocative writing style (we weren’t calling to pressure, we were calling to ask! Also, Hi Kevin! Thanks for the mad linkage!) but honestly, the shit that I posted was on a vegan blog for vegans. Everyone fucking relax. All of this silly fighting and attacking is just kinda ridiculous and from people who have this weird hatred towards vegans…maybe a vegan chick wouldn’t date you or something? I can’t imagine…you’re all so charming! And attractive! Group date!!

  23. tk says:

    I just want to say that this was the last post I’d expect to get 105 comments. Did any of the American Apparel posts get 105? Wow.

  24. Bjorn Toulousse says:

    I wrote a short play:

    Mission Restaurant Patron: “I’d like a serving of Vegan Fixie with a side of Yoga.”

    Server: “Would you like an Ironic Mustache with that?”

    MRP: “Hmm, I can’t decide….let me ask my Japanese girlfriend.”

  25. Olivia says:

    Why the fuck does it matter to any vegan-hating omivores if we get more choices or not.

    Mind your own business and revel in your fucking dietary privilege, asshole.

    As for the vegan-liking ominvores, I’m sure they’ll be happy to have one more place that they can attend with their vegetarian and vegan friends and enjoy a meal together that caters to all the various dietary choices at the table.

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