As someone who was a vegetarian for four years in her youth and ate an awful lot of unsatisfying, puck-like "burger" "patties" during that stretch, I'm simultaneously delighted and a little salty about the ever-increasing number of veg-friendly eats around.
The latest option for the plant-based populace is the entirely vegan "Impossible Burger," which has been steadily creeping across the country since it debuted in New York in 2016. Thousands of diners have requested -- demanded, actually -- that their favorite local restaurants start selling it. And after a pop-up preview at the Mall of America last week, you can find the Impossible Burger at Hell's Kitchen in Minneapolis any time starting today. It's the first eatery in Minnesota that'll have it.
Known as the veggie burger that bleeds, this baby is made with standard plant ingredients familiar to any vegetarian or vegan -- wheat, potatoes, coconut oil -- but according to the Impossible Foods website, what makes their burger better is the inclusion of an ingredient called heme. "We discovered that heme is what makes meat smell, sizzle, bleed, and taste gloriously meaty," the Impossible Foods team says. "Consider it the 'magic ingredient' that makes our burger a carnivore’s dream."
If you're nonetheless muttering under your breath about how this vegan version couldn't possibly satisfy like the real thing, well:
Sure looks like it could hold its own, anyway.
GoMN reports that while the plant-based wonder puts down roots at Hell's Kitchen today, you won't find it as you scan their offerings just yet -- the restaurant has new menus arriving later this month, and for now, you can request the burger as an off-menu item. (How exclusive!)
For more meatless-but-still-dope burgers, don't sleep on the Dirty Secret at J. Selby's in St. Paul -- a faux Big Mac that City Pages' Hannah Sayle says is "different -- earthier, more substantial than the glide-down-your-gullet fast food original -- but delicious."
Update, 1/8/2017 at 10:55 a.m.: Nathan Gerdes at Hell's Kitchen has a quick clarification about the Impossible Burger: "While the Impossible Burger patty is itself totally vegan, our preparation right now is not -- we don’t stock vegan buns right now and the flattop we use also processes bacon," he explains. They’ll be stocking vegan buns starting Tuesday, January 9.
80 S. Ninth St., Minneapolis; 612-332-4700