From fashion designer to vegan foodie, this local entrepreneur is adding a new feather to her cap with healthy (and yes tasty) versions of your favorite foods.
Danielle DeLaine has a passion for food but has always considered herself to be a picky eater.
“I was picky about the texture of meat especially,” she says. “I always enjoyed veggies, toppings, and sauces more than anything.”
She says that growing up she would often take the pattie off her burger and eat the toppings and bread. Then, when she was pregnant more than 23 years ago, she gave up beef and pork.
“I just didn’t want it at all anymore,” says DeLaine. “A year passed and I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis.”
She was diagnosed at a time when doctors knew very little about her condition and chalked it up to stress. But DeLaine knew stress wasn’t the issue. After doing more research of her own, looking into alternative options and spending years as a pescetarian, she decided three years ago that she wanted to get rid of meat all together.
But as a passionate seafood lover, DeLaine wasn’t quite ready to rid herself completely of the taste of seafood.
“I began to get creative in the search for plant-based alternatives and there were very few back then,” she says. “But that allowed me to create dishes that vegans and non-vegans alike could enjoy.”
To help others who may need to follow specific diet guidelines due to health or personal reasons, DeLaine decided to launch Herban Vegans.
“Herban Vegans is an eatery that is one of only a couple in the United States that offers vegan cuisine inspired by the sea,” she says. “Our flagship products are vegan seafood.”
DeLaine herself was no stranger to entrepreneurship when she decided to launch Herban Vegans. She is the founder of a fashionable hat boutique called Chapeau Couture.
She says that taking a leap of faith on Herban Vegans has been a testament to her vegan lifestyle and how enjoyable it can be.
“There are many reasons why people are vegan, but you don’t have to be a vegan to enjoy vegan food,” she says. “I always encourage my friends and family to enjoy a meatless meal daily. You can never go wrong with protecting the Earth and God’s creatures while enhancing your wellbeing simultaneously.”
The menu at Herban Vegans features pancultural seafood cuisine turned vegan. Non-seafood dishes are also available, giving an opportunity to provide more variety in the food and weekly meal prep options.
DeLaine says that customer favorites include Fysh, Miracle Mac, Gumbo, Krab Cakes, Shrimp Po’Boy, Seafood Boil, and Etoufee. “We invite everyone to check us out for themselves,” she says. “All are welcome.”
DeLaine adds that she was operating Herban Vegans from Caffe Vivace jazz lounge offering brunch. However, in the midst of the pandemic and new surges, she is operating as a virtual eatery from Findlay Kitchen.
“It is such a benefit to have Findlay Kitchen as a resource,” she says. “And we are currently looking forward to expansion to a grocery store near you.”
Pickup and delivery options are available when placing an order.