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Downtown offers vegan friendly meal options

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Jesica Kimberlin
Staff Writer

Butter drenched meals at Davenport Dining Hall and Barbara’s Place turn vegan students away. They struggle daily to find meals that adhere to their dietary choices.

Senior psychology major Lacey Corcoran is one of the vegan students at the University of La Verne.

“What I notice with Davenport and Barb’s is that they cater a lot more to vegetarians (than vegans),” Corcoran said.

“Some people that were vegan have gone back to being vegetarian because it’s kind of hard to get food at Davenport,” she said.

Alumna Elisabeth French works at Argo Mediterranean Grille in downtown La Verne and is also vegan.

French said that when she was a student, the food she had on a daily basis on campus was repetitive because of few options and a lack of understanding that vegan means no animal products whatsoever.

“The biggest issue is the use of butter,” French said. “At (Davenport) all of the cooked vegetables are cooked with butter.”

Corcoran and French said some places in downtown La Verne are in fact vegan friendly options.

Argo Mediterranean Grille, Bowl House, Cactus Coffee, Granny’s Yogurt and Spooner’s all have vegan options on their menus.

Alberto Peña, manager of Argo Mediterranean Grille, said all of the restaurant’s appetizers and extras are vegan.

There are stuffed grape leaves, tabbouleh, falafel, pita bread, tahini, grilled vegetables and more. Peña said that there have been a lot of regular customers who ask for vegan food, including ULV faculty members who regularly eat at Argo.

In addition to that, the restaurant also offers pick up, delivery and catering.

The owner of Cactus Coffee, Jeremy Jenewin, said that he purposely came up with vegan friendly drinks and snacks on his menu because he was vegan, and understood the struggles of finding options, especially when eating or drinking out of the house.

“I was vegan for two years… I know that it’s hard to find places that have something for every one of us, so I would like to have the option for people,” Jenewein said.

In addition to the avocado toast, milk and honey replacement that Cactus Coffee offers to their vegan customers, the store will also be adding more vegan options to their menu such as vegan muffins and bagels.

Even though it might be hard to find vegan friendly food at Davenport, students and faculty can always “recommend” food to the dining staff.

“When students want something special… they can always make a recommendation… you just have to let them know,” senior psychology major and former employee at Davenport Dining Hall Kyle Woods said.

Woods said he has previously submitted a recommendation form and it took about a week for Davenport Dining Hall to feature the requested food on the menu.

Jesica Kimberlin can be reached at aljazi.birashed@laverne.edu.

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