Occasionally I get comments on my Chicago’s Best Vegan Eats post asking how I could leave off this place or that place. Most of the time, it’s simply because I haven’t had a chance to go yet – too many vegan options in Chicago, what a great problem to have! But once in a while it’s because I had an experience so poor I can’t recommend the place. So, here’s a hall of shame for a couple of places I not only don’t recommend, I actually warn you against.

Long story short, I used to love this place, but they they screwed over a friend of mine who sold cakes to them. I stopped going in for a while, but then went back once when an out of town visitor specifically asked us to take him here. Upon returning home, I recieved this totally bat shit email from the owner – who is not my friend, and not anyone I knew on a personal level – in which he scolds me for not coming to his defence when my actual friends’ social media fans left comments on his business page about the crap he’d pulled on her. Entitled much? No longer a fan, do not recommend.

It was recently announced that this same owner is opening a vegan Jewish deli. Needless to say, I am not interested.

I got food poisoning here once, and let the owner know. He checked the item I’d consumed, agreed that it was spoiled, and offered me a free replacement if I went back. Went back with my family and we ALL got food poisoning. As if that wasn’t enough, I later found out that the owner was sexually harassing female employees and contractors. It’s under new management now (by the former partner of above mentioned owner), but reports I’ve received from friends don’t give me much faith that they’ve cleaned up their act.

Admittedly, the chef behind this business is talented. However, when we went into business with the restaurant named above and was asked about the harassment accusations made by a female vendor he stated that she was “complicit” in what happened because she didn’t speak out right away. And for that reason, I have never been to his cafe and have zero plans to go in my lifetime.