It all started on OfferUp in April 2018; that’s when Las Vegas couple Monica and Anibal Flores found a food cart for sale. With backgrounds in the restaurant industry (Anibal has been a cook for seven years), they purchased the cart. Thus, Phyto’s Vegan Eats was born.
It’s name traces back to the Greek prefix phyto used in scientific terms and meaning “of a plant or relating to plants.”
“We thought it was fitting for an all plant-based restaurants and so we decided to call ourselves Phyto’s Vegan Eats,” says Monica.
The goal of the new all-vegan cart is to lend itself to familiarity and nostalgia that Monica suggests can be lost when transitioning to vegan life.
“That familiarity being [able to purchase] some good ol’ fashion hot dogs from a good ol’ fashion hot dog cart,” says Monica. “It is very rare as a vegan to be able to walk to a street cart and order vegan food and we want to change that. It’s a simple comfort food that people of all ages enjoy whether vegan or non-vegan and we are so happy to be able to bring something like this to such a loving and supportive community.”
Debuting at the 2018 Vegas VegFest, Phyto’s offered numerous gourmet vegan hot dogs to a crowd numbering in the thousands. But, expect big things from this tiny cart in the future.
“[Anibal] has several recipes that he’s created and would like to introduce once we have an actual kitchen,” she says. Think Shepherd’s Pie, street tacos, pizza, curries, ramen and more. “But for now, we just plan on selling hot dogs and making them as creative as possible so we can one day earn enough to purchase an actual restaurant.”
For now, be sure to follow Phyto’s on Facebook or Instagram to see where they’re going to turn up. The menu features three signature dogs: the Crispy Cowboy with bacon, white and crispy onions and BBQ sauce; the El Guey with pico de gallo, bacon, jalapeños and avocado mayo; and the Kimchi Kool with kimchi, furikake, Hoisin sauce and Sriracha mayo. They also offer Build Your Own Dogs where you can choose from toppings like crushed chips, relish, jalapeños, crispy onions, avocado mayo and much more.
Photos: Phyto’s Vegan Eats
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Diana Edelman is the founder of Vegans, Baby. She previously lived and worked in Thailand working for an elephant sanctuary and has traveled around the world speaking about the realities of elephant tourism, being a positive activist and entrepreneur at events including TBEX, SEED Food + Wine, VegFest Puerto Rico, VegFest Toronto and more. Diana is a proud partner with the James Beard Foundation and curates their Vegas Vegan Dinner series at the famous James Beard House, as well as the vegan activation, The Farm Stand, at Las Vegas’ Life Is Beautiful festival.