Seitan Rising Cafe and Bakery, which opened final August on the southern finish of Morgan Avenue, is form of a supergroup collab among the many queer ladies of widespread pop-ups Pisces Rising Vegan and Seitan’s Helper. The place is all vegan on a regular basis, it is 100% worker-owned, and, based mostly on a tremendous feast I wolfed down on a Bushwick stoop final weekend, they make two issues exceptionally properly: breakfast sandwiches, and pastries.
“We consider the restaurant business’s tradition wants a significant overhaul,” mentioned Christina, certainly one of Seitan Rising’s 4 employee-owners together with Amanda, Cheyanne, and Lars. “We’ve all labored in poisonous environments earlier than, locations the place you’re feeling disposable and brought benefit of, with house owners who don’t need to pay you and count on you to work your self above and past with nothing in return, not even respect. Being worker-owned means we will be extra acutely aware of our well being, each bodily and mentally, and we now have extra flexibility in issues like our hours, our menu, and the way we function.”
As you’d think about from the cafe’s title, protein-rich seitan, or wheat gluten, performs a key function in giving the sandwiches right here each taste and heft. It was nonetheless pretty early on Saturday morning after I arrived, so I caught with the breakfast aspect of issues on this division. The Hammy was terrific, a well-stuffed beast of a sandwich starring some smoky seitan housemade “ham,” a mushy tofu scramble, thick hollandaise, and spicy ketchup giving it some kick, all on an excellent Balthazar roll.
It is all the time a dangerous transfer to fiddle with that beloved NYC traditional, the Bacon, Egg, & Cheese, however Seitan Rising’s sandwich-maker Cheyanne delivers with a totally vegan BEC that is loaded with taste, thanks, partly, to housemade roasted pink pepper jam and maple mayo. There’s a prolonged record of lunch-type sandwiches obtainable as properly, together with the Chickie Caesar Wrap, a vegan model of the traditional Italian hero known as the Triple Menace (aka, pepperoni, salami, and mortadella), and the Crimson Satan, which is loaded with veggie variations of turkey and roast beef, and coleslaw, and beets.
Simply as satisfying because the sandwiches are Seitan Rising’s pastries, which appear to fall underneath three classes: savory, breakfast-y, and extra conventional desserts. I occurred to reach when there was a slab of Lars’s Cheddar Bay Croissant Bread Pudding within the pastry case, and when you additionally get fortunate like that–it’s apparently a “uncommon particular”–order it instantly. Loopy wealthy and scrumptious, it is just about all you may have to eat for the remainder of the day.
There are Plain Croissants, Chocolate Croissants, Ham and Cheese Croissants, Cinnamon Buns, rotating flavors of Focaccia (after I was there: a handsome tomato, basil, and jalapeno quantity), Scorching Pockets, cookies, and fruity Oat Bars, amongst a number of different potentialities. I beloved my slice of Strawberry Rhubarb Cheese Pie and, simply after I thought I used to be completed, I observed somebody leaving with a towering piece of Chocolate Peanut Butter Cake, so I went again in to order a few of that, too.
Seitan Rising’s opening final summer time was delayed as a result of pandemic, principally as a result of, as Christina mentioned, “It was so, a lot more durable to get our permits and paperwork authorised.” However the menu is just about the identical as what all of them dreamed it could be, “aside from our pricing, which we determined to maintain low as a result of numerous our family and friends misplaced their jobs.” There isn’t any seating indoors or out, and it is more likely to keep that means (seems “we like being takeaway,” mentioned Christina, “and suppose, considerably unexpectedly, that it’s a way more manageable mannequin for us”), so when you do not reside close by you may have seize a close-by stoop or stroll just a few blocks over to Maria Hernandez Park for a picnic.
Seitan Rising is positioned at 2 Morgan Avenue, simply north of Flushing Avenue, and is presently open on Thursday by Sunday from 9 a.m. to six p.m. (929-298-0160; seitanrising.com)