This Zero-Waste Vegan Restaurant Is Creating a More Sustainable Future for the Food Industry
The Plot is saving the planet one dish at a time!
It’s no secret that a plant-based diet is more eco-conscious than an animal-based one. For starters, the growing and harvesting of produce emits far less greenhouse gasses than animal agriculture. In addition, the process utilizes a good deal less land, water, and energy. But just because food is vegan doesn’t mean it’s cultivated, harvested, and prepared in the most environmentally friendly way. The Plot in Oceanside is rewriting the script. This zero-waste vegan restaurant is creating a more sustainable future for the food industry in more ways than one.
The Plot Owners Davin and Jessica Waite
Owners Davin and Jessica Waite opened The Plot to make a difference in the world. How? First, they make fresh, regeneratively grown produce mainstream. Second, they present delicious, plant-based recipes that everyone will love. And third, they show other restaurants how to practice sustainability in every step of the way.
While Davin comes from a culinary background, Jessica pursued a medical career before breaking into the restaurant industry. “I was in college studying pre-med when I met my husband, who is a phenomenal chef and shares a lot of my beliefs about respectful and sustainable food sourcing. He cooked me meals that were so delicious. As a vegan I had never had food like this! I shifted away from healthcare as a career and realized we could make a huge difference by serving plant-based food that appeals to everyone,” Jessica shared.
Ingredients From Local, Regenerative Farms
A good meal begins at the source—and The Plot takes this to heart. The Plot maintains its own garden right across the street from the restaurant. This is where the culinary team first sources ingredients. In addition, Chef de Cuisine Ryan Orlando shops regenerative farms and other local businesses. For example, Mindful Mushrooms provides The Plot’s mushrooms. And Sage Hill Ranch supplies fresh-grown produce.
Scratch-Made Vegan Meat and Cheese
Something that sets The Plot apart from other plant-based restaurants is the use of scratch-made vegan meat and cheese. The Plot creates almost everything in-house from a variety of wholesome ingredients—such as lentils, wild rice, tofu, and mushrooms.
“Making our products from scratch means less packaging and more delicious, healthy food for our guests. Sourcing from local farms also allows us to minimize packaging and supply chain footprint,” Jessica told VegOut.
Not only that, but all of the dishes taste amazing! The Plot does a wonderful job balancing fresh, light bites with heartier, more filling entrees. So whether you’re in the mood for sausage & biscuits or a Caesar salad, you can guarantee The Plot will have it. A few VegOut favorites include the Taköyaki, Chronic Roll, and Chicken & Waffles.
The Plot’s Zero-Waste Practices
At most restaurants, leftover kitchen scraps are tossed in the trash. But at The Plot, the culinary team goes above and beyond to upcycle foods in very creative ways. For example, they use orange peels to make a dressing, mushroom scraps to flavor vegan cheese, and vegetable scraps to create stock and dried seasoning.
But that’s not where The Plot’s zero-waste practices end. In fact, that’s only the beginning! First and foremost, the Waites decorated the restaurant with recycled wood and other materials. In addition, they use palm oil-free, zero-waste candles to dress their tables. They also save leftover water from used carafes to water plants in their garden. Finally, the restaurant serves takeout dishes in biodegradable packaging and diverts anything that can’t be composted or recycled into a TerraCycle box.
When asked about the importance of The Plot’s zero-waste practices, Jessica stated, “There is so much harm caused by plastic pollution and industrial agriculture, and I wanted to create a model that demonstrates a better version of business. Creating a business based on sustainability means that as we grow the company, we amplify our impact. And creating a model that is successful means the ripple effect extends even farther. There are so many reasons to build a business that operates responsibly, in addition to knowing we are doing the right thing. Reducing our impact and using our product creatively brings financial return, provides messaging that supports our marketing efforts, and benefits our team culture and work environment.”
Vegan Chefs and Restaurant Owners
Davin and Jessica Waite set a wonderful example to other vegan and non-vegan chefs and restaurant owners across the globe. Achieving a better future for the food industry begins with small changes that make waves down the line.
Jessica told VegOut, “I want to send love to everyone who is working so hard to elevate plant-based cuisine in our communities. There are so many awesome chefs and restaurant owners that are taking big risks to source and serve in a way that they believe, and we are so grateful! Commitment to innovation and a collaborative spirit will allow us to create a shift in the food system that will benefit so many!”
For more information, visit ThePlotRestaurant.com.
When Allie responded to an Instagram post on @vegoutlosangeles a few years ago, she had no idea she’d join the coolest vegan team on the planet. An Austin native, actress, yogi, and part-time sword fighter (don’t ask!), Allie is on a mission to live her best life and inspire others to do the same. She graduated from Hussian College In Studio with a B.F.A. in Contemporary Musical Theatre + Film and currently acts, writes, and eats her way through Los Angeles.
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