Vegan Pop Up to Take Over New Orleans-Inspired Lagniappe in Midtown Sunday
Kalmanowicz is the creator and head chef of Love & Vegetables, a by-donation vegan dinner event that usually pops up at Earth N Us urban farm in Little Haiti the third Saturday of the month. His last two dinners --- a nine-course chakra-balancing feast characterized by dishes like beet-red quinoa and blueberry polenta; and a Thanksgiving-inspired meal featuring vegan green bean casserole and lentil loaf --- were so popular that he and his co-organizers were inspired to expand the reach of their plant-fueled parties. The event at Lagniappe in Midtown on Sunday will mark the first time the gentle chefs will venture off the farm.
|Beet-red quinoa served at a recent Love & Vegetables vegan dinner|
|The interior at the new Lagniappe in Midtown|
Veggie gumbo and other Cajun-style dishes will be doled out from a full-service buffet to a backdrop of live jazz music in the open air yard at Lagniappe House, a space the owner has peppered with homey recycled furniture and decor, lending to the laid-back, comfortable vibe. Julia Onnie-Hay, Earth N Us' resident kombucha expert, will offer her home-brewed fermented teas to accompany the vegan eats.
|Lagniappe House Facebook page|
|Musicians play in the yard at Lagniappe|
Tunnell said he doesn't charge a cover for the nightly live music and his objective is to make a good time affordable and accessible for all who are looking for a "breath of fresh air" in the Miami nightlife scene. Lagniappe is so authentically New Orleans, the venue even has a four-bedroom bed and breakfast-style space upstairs to lodge traveling musicians or others staying in town for the short-term.
"We're equally focused on wine, live music, and having a good time," said Tunnell, who has another connection to the Earth N Us Farm; his girlfriend lives on the premises of the cooperative community. As during normal nights at Lagniappe, the restaurant will offer 150 wines by the reasonably priced glass or bottle and 60 beers - mostly craft brews - ranging from $4 to $7 a pop. The price of the meal, in the Love & Vegetables tradition, is whatever the diner can afford, even if that means washing dishes or clearing tables at the event.
Dinner will be served from 7 to 9 p.m. You can RSVP via the Love & Vegetables Facebook page, or "Just show up," said Kalmanowicz, in true Big Easy style.
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