Veg out! Vegan eatery offers plant-based comfort foods

Veg out! Vegan eatery offers plant-based comfort foods
Photo by Trey Pentecost

It’s vegan food made for the masses.

A new vegan eatery now open in Carroll Gardens aims to lure veggie-lovers and meat-eaters alike with a menu of non-meat and non-dairy takes on classic comfort foods. Chef and vegetarian co-owner Champ Jones said the dishes will fill diners up without scaring away non-vegans.

“When we were coming up with items for the menu we wanted it to be accessible, not too fancy necessarily,” said Jones, who most recently worked as the sous chef at the acclaimed Eleven Madison Park on the distant isle of Manhattan. “Ideally anyone can come here without feeling like they’re sacrificing satiety or flavor.”

The eatery, which opened on Sept. 14, only features two entrée options: the $21 “lasagnette,” made from ground mushrooms and a ragu sauce made with seitan, and the $22 “TV dinner,” featuring mushrooms, peas and carrots, and a potato puree, according to Jones. Smaller plates include the $14 black plum terrine, with jam and pickled plum topping a slice of brioche, and the $13 tarte flambé composed with maitake mushrooms, oregano, and a savory imitation cream made with smoke olive oil, yeast extract, and garlic confit.

Sans only features one green salad — the “sunchoke,” featuring pickles, almond curd, and dandelion. Jones said that he cut down on salads in an effort to dispel the stereotype that vegans only eat lettuce.

“We’re not so much trying to do the green salads here,” he said. “It’s our goal to appeal to everyone — not to any specific community per se, but to hopefully continue a dialogue about what vegan food can be.”

For visitors who want a taste of everything, a $65 five-course tasting menu offers small dishes, and for another $45 diners can add beverage pairings from sommelier Daniel Beedle.

Jones previously worked in the same space, when it was Seersucker and Nightingale Nine. Its current incarnation is planned to last until September of 2019 — continuing past that will depend on whether the neighborhood responds to the concept, Jones said.

“It’s not so much of a tested market where you open a vegan restaurant with a slightly higher price point and do a tasting menu — there’s not many places that specialize in that,” he said.

Sans (329 Smith St. between President and Carroll streets in Carroll Gardens, (929) 337–6292, www.sansbk.com). Open Wed–Sun, 5:30 pm–10 pm.

Reach reporter Julianne McShane at (718) 260–2523 or by e-mail at jmcsh[email protected]nglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @juliannemcshane.