There’s a store in my city that calls themselves a vegan “butcher.” Their website says,

Whether you sample our Tunaless “Tuna”, Chick*n Schnitzel, Szechuan “Beef”, Montreal Style “Steak” or browse our vegan grocery assisted by knowledgeable staff, you will have an unforgettable experience at our store.”

(No argument about it being “unforgettable.”)

The website also mentions Chick*n Shawarma topped with lettuce, carrot, pickle and our garlic “aioli”; and our famous Carrot Lox.

Last year, readers of our weekly free city magazine voted them “Best Butcher & Deli.”

Butchers, with their extensive training, were furious. Maybe of us collectively facepalmed. A “vegan butcher” doesn’t exist simply because one chooses to label themselves as such.

I like vegetarian & vegan food but prefer that it not be presented as a meat analogue. Although in theory I have a disdain for the idea of “vegan cheese”, I’ve eaten some tasty ricotta analogues. I haven’t liked any of the hard cheese analogues I’ve tried. I’ve enjoyed cashew “cream” though cringe at the term. I’ll take naturally vegan fresh rolls, zucchini noodles with vegetables and vegetable-based sauce, polenta, grilled eggplant or yes, portobello mushrooms over processed soy any day.

P.S. Nutritional yeast does NOT taste like cheese. I strongly believe that this is a lie that vegans tell themselves to feel better. To me, “nooch” tastes like feet smell.

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