Vegan Café Coming to the Chace Mill in Burlington | Food News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your support!

Give Now

Vegan Café Coming to the Chace Mill in Burlington 

Side Dishes

Published November 19, 2013 at 6:05 p.m.


Vegan food can be divisive — many eaters either love it or run in the opposite direction. The owner of the breakfast and lunch café coming to Burlington’s Chace Mill this winter hopes to blur those lines once and for all, by serving dishes that go beyond the stereotypical tofu and salads.

Chef and artist Trevor Sullivan plans to open Pingala Café & Eatery in the northwest corner of the historic mill by mid-January. He hopes his vegan menu will appeal to a wide swath of eaters.

“A lot of menus get geared to the rice-bowl kind of thing. We want to be really powerful, bold flavors,” says Sullivan, a Johnson & Wales grad who worked at the Skinny Pancake, Church & Main and the Essex Resort & Spa before becoming a vegan. “In the last year and a half,” he continues. “I’ve become so much more inspired about food. I really want to share that with people.”

Still under renovation, the space will eventually house a 16-seat brick café with Winooski River views, a wall-length mural and reclaimed-barn-board and steel fixtures. “We’ll have built-in seating,” Sullivan says. “The whole idea is to make it look like it’s always been there, like it’s growing out of the building.”

Pingala will open each morning with a roster of muffins, scones and pastries, as well as a breakfast sandwich “that won’t make you miss eggs, cheese and sausage at all,” Sullivan promises. Instead, it will be stuffed with maple-marinated tempeh sausage and housemade nut cheese. “We’ll be making a lot of nut cheeses,” says Sullivan, including “a melty Munster-style cheese and a cashew-ricotta cheese.”

At lunch, salads and sandwiches will draw on a mélange of global influences. They will include a pulled-jackfruit sandwich; a bánh mi with sweet-and-spicy marinated tofu, cilantro, house-pickled veggies and gochujang; a Mediterranean wrap of roasted chickpeas, pickled veggies, sun-dried tomatoes, capers and sprouts; and an intensely flavored burger based on kidney beans, quinoa and teff flour. “We’re not trying to do mock this and mock that, faux this and faux that,” Sullivan asserts. “We’re really trying to accentuate the flavors and plants we’re working with.”

Pingala will serve espresso drinks, including Chemex pour-overs, made with beans from Massachusetts’ Six Depot Roastery and Café. They can be blended with fresh hemp-seed milk, coconut milk or cashew cream. Teas, smoothies, and fresh juices, including wheatgrass shots, round out the beverages.

Sullivan has been planning his menu with Dave Unumb, a chef fresh from opening Root, a vegetarian restaurant near Boston, whom he calls “integral” to the project. “It’s kind of fun creating recipes that otherwise wouldn’t be vegan,” says Sullivan, who also plans to eschew gas appliances. “We will be among the greenest kitchens in Vermont.”

The original print version of this article was headlined "No Meat Here"

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

More By This Author

About The Author

Corin Hirsch

Corin Hirsch

Corin Hirsch was a Seven Days food writer from 2011 through 2016. She is the author of Forgotten Drinks of Colonial New England, published by History Press in 2014.


Comments are closed.

From 2014-2020, Seven Days allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we've appreciated the suggestions and insights, right now Seven Days is prioritizing our core mission — producing high-quality, responsible local journalism — over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Latest in Food News

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative

All content © 2023 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401

Advertising Policy  |  Privacy Policy  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Help
Website powered by Foundation