Tabitha Brown to Open Her First Vegan Restaurant in LA
Tabitha Brown’s vegan eats will no longer be limited to TikTok demonstration and recipes: The social media influencer just announced that she will be helping to bring Chicago-based restaurant Kale My Name to Los Angeles County. Brown decided to team up with the Midwestern vegan bar and restaurant to bring one of her favorite plant-based eateries to the west coast. Kale My Name’s offshoot location will open its doors on Ventura Boulevard in Encino, California – 20 miles from Los Angeles.
“If you have an idea, a dream, or a thought, honey, do something with it,” Brown said.“This is going to be my first restaurant experience, something I never even thought I could do. [I have] a great partner and a restaurant I love and believe in here in California. I’m not going to stop here. That’s what my spirit is saying: ‘Tab, this is the first but not the last.”
Founded by Nemanja Nekac Golubovic in Spring 2020, the flagship Kale My Name location is nestled in Chicago’s Albany Park. The fully plant-based restaurant features an expansive menu of globally inspired dishes. Brown fell in love with the Albany Park-based restaurant while she lived in Chicago to film the Showtime original, The Chi. She claims to have stumbled upon the local vegan eatery when searching for plant-based establishments on Instagram.
“I don’t live in Chicago. As much as I love Chicago, I needed Kale My Name on a regular basis,” Brown teased in her video announcement. “I thought, ‘What if I talk to the owner and said maybe we should do a Kale My Name LA.’”
Kale My Name provides a vegan dish for everyone, working to create delicious protein alternatives, plant-based twists on classic dishes, and nutritional dishes that would encourage any consumer to try vegan cuisine. Some menu items include potato and vegetable-stuffed empanadas, traditional Balkan bell pepper and eggplant spread called ajvar, and Italian-inspired seitan wraps filled with kale mozzarella sun-dried tomatoes mushrooms, and garlic aioli.
“Kale is a powerful plant, it’s a superfood. As we were designing the menu we kept on replacing ingredients like lettuce and spinach with kale because we were obsessed,” Golubovic told Block Club Chicago.
While Kale My Name LA currently hasn’t announced an opening date, the plant-based restaurant plans to enter the Los Angeles food scene at the Vegandale food festival on October 23. During the festival, the remote Kale My Name pop-up will showcase some of the restaurant’s signature dishes.
Since gaining popularity for her viral video featuring a TTLA sandwich – a sandwich filled with tempeh bacon, tomato, lettuce, and avocado – Brown has established herself as a prominent vegan voice across all social media platforms. Before joining the cast of The Chi, the actress starred on her own the show All Love with Tabitha Brown on the Ellen Network. During the show, Brown shared vegan recipes, nutritional tricks, and motivational guidance, making her one of the most popular plant-based celebrities ever.
Earlier this year, Brown received an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Social Media Personality during the 52nd Annual NAACP Image Awards. Brown was praised for making plant-based eating palatable to all viewers, inspiring people worldwide to try a plant-based lifestyle.
“Her delicious, creative, yet simple recipes, sautéed with compassionate messages, and sprinkled with a pinch of humor, attract a large following that finds comfort in the ‘auntie they never had.’ Though the term ‘vegan’ often polarizes audiences, Brown reinvents the idea of veganism, demonstrating that it can be accessible, inclusive, and accommodating for anyone,” the NAACP Image Awards stated. “Brown has developed a role for herself, with her own script, direction, and audience. An unconventional way to rise to stardom, Brown paved a path to achieve her dream of being in front of a camera without sacrificing—and, in fact, embracing—who she is and the unique, wholesome qualities that make her Tabitha Brown.”
Before entering the restaurant industry, Brown made her first foray into the food market when she developed her signature Sunshine All-Purpose Seasoning Blend earlier this year. Created in partnership with food giant McCormick, the new salt-free, Caribbean-inspired spice blend aims to bring some of Brown’s signature cooking directly to fans and consumers. The new spice arrived with three new vegan recipes to give consumers a chance to test out the new mixture.
Before Brown's favorite Chicago-based vegan restaurant reaches the west coast, fans can visit the first location at 3300 W Montrose Ave, Chicago, IL 60618. The vegan restaurant and bar are now open from 11 am to 10 pm every day for dine-in and take-out service.