Nora Kovaleski | Veg News
We might not be on New York City’s level of vegan just yet, but San Jose’s promising plant-based scene is picking up speed.
If you’ve spent a considerable amount of time in San Francisco or Oakland, chances are you consider San Jose, CA to be the ugly step-sister city of the Bay Area. San Jose gets credit from the cities by the bay for a decent hockey team, the Winchester Mystery House, and scientific innovation. But what yuppies and hipsters fail to recognize is San Jose’s knack for community organizing, a local art scene gaining tremendous momentum, and—yes—a budding vegan scene. As plant-based food tech companies continue to pop up throughout Silicon Valley, more restaurants are adding vegan options to their omnivore-suited menus. Here’s our roadmap to finding vegan options in the vibrant downtown of this South Bay city.
When you’re craving something sweet, devour soy ice cream sandwiched between two fresh baked vegan cookies at CREAM on 1st St. For something sugary, fresh, and caffeinated, walk towards the city center through Paseo de San Antonio and grab an almond milk Mint Mojito at the famous Bay Area establishment Philz Coffee. Nearby, you’ll find a great place to post up with your laptop for an afternoon of inspired writing at Social Policy. Once your gorgeous dairy-free latte and avocado toast (sans poached egg) arrive, feel good about the fact that your vegan purchase supports community-building art shows and mini zine fairs. After all that hard work, you deserve another treat, so why not pick up some glazed vegan perfection at the politically-incorrect Psycho Donuts? The bakery shares its space with Camera 3 Cinema—San Jose’s premiere theater for cult classic films and monthly midnight performances of Rocky Horror Picture Show on the first Saturday of every month. While you’re in the neighborhood, pop in to La Victoria Taqueria, not for food, but for sauce. La Vic’s Orange Sauce is a crown jewel of San Jose and it just so happens to be vegan. Buy a bottle and put it on everything from potatoes to vegan nachos. Health-nuts fear not: you can indulge in your own way with the invigorating offerings at Vitamina Juices & Blends in the SoFA district—use your green juice buzz to scale a rock wall at neighboring theater-turned-gym Studio Climbing.