Syracuse ranked fifth most vegan-friendly city in North America
When you think of Syracuse getting national attention for food, you probably think of Dinosaur Barbeque or Heids, but as our Katie Gibas reports, the city is again in the spotlight, but this time it's for a food you might not expect.
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- Things weren't always so easy for vegetarians and vegans in Central New York.
"Back when I first when vegan 17 years ago, there was like one kind of soy milk and like tofu-scramble, and that was all you had to choose from at the grocery store," said Joel Capolongo, Strong Hearts Cafe Co-Owner.
But as the vegan movement continues to gain popularity, Syracuse is getting national attention for its efforts to give vegetarians more options when it comes to eating out. The city even ranked fifth on PETA's list for the most Veg-friendly cities in North America.
"PETA is a very nationally recognized group, and while we may not be on the same page philosophically with every single thing they do, we do feel honored to be on their list and when PETA speaks, people take notice, so we think it's probably going to help business," said Capolongo.
Syracuse not only makes the list because of its vegetarian and vegan restaurants, it also ranks high because of a large amount of restaurants here in the city offering several vegetarian and vegan options as part of their menu.
"These are things that usually find in much larger cities and a fact that a city of this size has two very vegan vegetarian friendly places, that's pretty rare," said Capolongo.
"I think for so long, meat-based menus have monopolized the American restaurant business, and we're just trying to fight back against a little bit of that hegemony," said Jim Reardon, Alto Cinco Manager.
Vegans are confident this Veg-Friendly ranking will draw more people to the area, which will mean a big win for both business and the city as a whole.
For more information on local Vegan-Friendly restaurants and their menus:
PETA's full list of vegetarian and vegan-friendly cities in North America: