It’s getting easier to find good vegan food in Cork.
But if you always return to the same haunts on the hunt for plant-based grub, World Vegan Day on November 1st presents a unique opportunity to expand your horizons.
Cork restaurants are joining more than 150 businesses countrywide to highlight their vegan menus, with many laying on specials for the whole month.
The campaign is the brainchild of a small group of vegan activists who were inspired to use the occasion of International World Vegan Day to encourage more Irish people to sample vegan food.
“We’re delighted to say that the initiative has grown far beyond our expectations for our first year,” said Lucy Glendinning, a spokesperson for the Full Irish Vegan.
“We are blown away by the enthusiasm from restaurants across the country, and we know the Irish public will really enjoy all the many delicious vegan options on offer that day.”
Here are just 12 of the World Vegan Day specials to try in Cork this month:
The Quay Co-Op, Sullivan’s Quay: Back to the 80s/40th Vegan Menu: €19.82 for two courses from the menu.
Sonflour, Castle Street: Pasta ‘Normal People’: Fried aubergine, caramelised cherry tomatoes, fresh pesto drops, walnut and garlic oil.
Alchemy, Barrack Street: Pop in during November to try the special World Vegan Day Vegan Toastie.
Cafe Mexicana, Carey’s Lane, Cork City: This popular Cork spot has created a full vegan three-course menu, which will be available from now on.
My Goodness, English Market, Cork City: Home Fried Potatoes: twice cooked potatoes, salad, Kimcheese, sour cream, curtido BBQ sauce, chilli, seed carne, pickle. For a sweet treat, try the probiotic hot chocolate and salted caramel swirl.
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Good for the Soul, Ballincollig: Vietnamese Pho (Vegan): Vermicelli rice noodles in an aromatic broth with mushrooms, bean sprouts and fresh chilli. Option to add smoked tofu.
Oak Fire Pizza, various locations across Cork: Vegan pizza with vegan cheese made in Cork by Mihu.
Antiquity café @ The Timetravellers Bookshop, Skibbereen: The Hungry Caterpillar: Veggie stew topped with fresh herbs “and lots of delicious bits and pieces” followed by Smorrebrod, an open wholegrain rye sandwich topped with stewed mushrooms in magic sauce and sundried tomato paste with fresh herbs. For dessert? A plant-based take on the Snicker Bar – Snickys made by Nicky.
Clonakilty Tea Shop, Clonakilty: Lunch: Vegan bagel with vegan cream cheese filling and Vegan Oat Cookies for dessert.
Suttons Bistro, Rochestown Park Hotel: Chargrilled Vegan Steak, pickled cabbage, grain mustard potato, truffled mushrooms, peppercorn sauce.
Budds, Ballydehob: A starter of smoked cheese arancini balls with arrabbiata sauce, crispy kale, with a masala dosa (South Indian fermented lentil and rice pancake served with sambar, garam masala potato, coconut chutney, tomato chilli chutney and pistachio dust for mains. There’s a fresh turmeric, cardamom and chocolate orange raw cake with sea salt caramel ice cream for dessert too.
Cafe Paradiso, Lancaster Quay, Cork City: Arguably Ireland’s best-known veggie and vegan eatery, Paradiso’s World Vegan Special is chilli glazed tofu with cavolo nero, coconut-tamarind, braised fennel, lime, chilli coriander, pickled orange fried potato fave, strange sauce and scallions.
You can check out the full list of participating Cork restaurants here.
Main image: Vegan Pho at Good for the Soul, Ballincollig