A vegan sports bar has opened its doors in Los Angeles’ Highland Park neighborhood, bringing one of the first completely vegan sports bars to the city beginning June 15th. Put Me In Coach opened for business yesterday on California’s reopening day. The vegan sports bar embodies everything a conventional sports bar brings to the table, giving all patrons the full-fledged experience. The completely plant-based bar’s menu comes fully equipped with familiar favorites including buffalo wings, pizza, and chili dogs, giving customers both plant-based and not a reason to enjoy their visit.

“Food is our way of giving love to others,” chef Richard Chang told VegNews. “When you eat at Put Me In Coach, we want you to feel that same sense of relief that [you] can only experience when receiving a giant hug from someone who deeply cares about [you].”

The award-winning chef will bring this sports bar to the next level with his notable, experimental menu. Beyond the typical sports bar fare, Chang is developing a list of vegan Mexican street food, Korean classics, and an in-house chip based on Cool Ranch Doritos. Put Me In Coach plans to give customers a complete sports bar experience with food that will encourage them to revisit.

Even though Chang hopes the food will be what keeps customers coming back, the initial draw for the bar is sports. As Los Angeles opens up, owner Jason Eisner wants to bring people together to watch sports games including the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Lakers Basketball. The bar plans to also rotate between international tennis and soccer games as well as vintage sporting events. The fully immersive sports bar will also provide customers with games like slam ball, spike ball, and hobby horse racing around the bar and patio.

“Sports are a unifier. Like food, they have this uncanny ability to create community,” Eisner told VegNews. Our concept was founded with that in mind, to use food and sports as a way to foster inclusivity and bring everyone together.”

Eisner’s vegan sports bar is the latest plant-based concept from the Los Angeles-based chef and restauranteur. Put Me In Coach comes after his vegan craft brewery Party Beer Co. and his twist on a southern classic at Wolfie’s Nashville Hot Chicken, which chef Chang runs and operates. Eisner also works as the beverage director at local favorite Nic’s On Beverly, opened in 2019 by Nic Adler as a vegan cocktail bar and restaurant.

Put Me In Coach will be located in the building that formerly hosted the vegan German beer garden Hinterhof, founded by Matthias Brandy and Eric Funk. The beer garden faced financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and after almost two years were forced to close its doors. However, the owners feel glad that their restaurant is being replaced by another vegan establishment.

“We felt that we could change people’s minds about vegan restaurants and to introduce the community to the Berlin Beer Garden culture in an inviting, relaxed setting,” the owners posted on Instagram in May 2021. “We feel like we accomplished this and a lot more in the last two-plus years and had a lot of fun doing it, even in a pandemic. Now it is time for us to move on to the next chapter in our lives and say Tschüẞ (Goodbye) to our beloved Hinterhof.”

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