Sure, it’s hip and cool to be Vegan these days, but not everyone is about that Vegan life.
Especially people of color. Most of us don’t want anything different from what tradition tells us is the food of our culture. However, four young men from the DMV and Ohio are making major moves to make Veganism culturally cool — and their speciality is an unbelievably, delicious faux Burger that everyone from Lil Nas X to Teyana Taylor have been raving about it.
I know what some of you are thinking: The food just better be good with a slogan like “Best Burgers In Los Angeles”. And believe you me, once you’ve tried their Beyond Meat Burger, you never go back. What’s a Vurger, you ask? The Vurger Guyz founders (Na’eem Outler of Woodbridge,VA; Phil Bennett of Oxford, OH; Kendall Patterson of Baltimore, MD and Kori Vines (Baltimore, MD) coined the term Vurger from the idea of a (V)egan Burger. Get it?
In their special Vurger, the crew uses Beyond Meat products and everything (yes, EVERYTHING) is Soy free. But it’s about more than just food. It’s about the community. Earlier this year, they teamed up with Chris Paul and Beyond Meat for Go Hoop Day, and back in November, they hosted their first ever Thanksgiving Vurgerway.
I caught up with the Vurger Guyz as they dished on everything from their growing celeb clientele, to becoming one of the biggest, Vegan street food trucks in the country. Time to get #Vurgurfied, yall. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
GG: At what point did you take the business serious enough to move to LA?
After going vegan and looking for ways to replace the foods that we missed, our CEO (Na’eem) began experimenting with vegan burgers in his own kitchen. After realizing he had come up with something good, he got in touch with his friends and business partners. They put their heads together to create the perfect menu and Vurger Guyz was created.
GG: Who are some of your celebrity clients so far?
Chris Paul, Victor Oladipo, Ethan Brown (Beyond Meat CEO), Lil Nas X, Jozzy, Dame Dash, Tabiltha Brown, Keyshawn Johnson, Glen “Big Baby” Davis, Dej Loaf, Al Harrington, Matt Barnes, Stephen Jackson, Greg Jennings, J Prince JR, Dom Kennedy, Jay 305, Cristina Milan, Tyga, JID, Emory Jones, and Teyana Taylor.
GG: Were any of you Vegan before starting Vurger Guyz?
From the very beginning. Being LA based, we didn’t even think about starting anywhere else. We wanted to LA to be the birthplace of Vurger Guyz. Yes, that’s how the idea came about to begin with. Vurger Guyz was created from trying to replace some of the foods that we missed before we were vegan.
Hit the flip to see what advice they’d give burger lovers who aren’t Vegan. Check them out on Instagram @VurgerGuyz!