In October 2020, Ovolo Hotels introduced its “Year of the Veg” marketing campaign. All the hotel eating places went vegetarian for an entire 12 months. It was so successful the hotel group determined to proceed with the largely plant-based (plus some lacto-ovo) menus. Now Ovolo is the first hotel chain to go all veg.
“It’s been a strategic transfer, however Ovolo prides itself on being an trade chief,” stated Ovolo Group’s Founder and CEO Girish Jhunjhnuwala. “We consider that the world modifications, due to this fact we proceed to evolve — we would like to guarantee we’re doing our bit to assist protect the environment, promote wholesome consuming and improve the picture of wonderful vegetarian and plant-based eating.”
What’s for dinner?
Since Ovolo’s founding in 2002, the firm expanded to function 4 accommodations and three eating places in Hong Kong, and eight accommodations and 7 eating places throughout Australia.
Ovolo’s eating places are serving up much more than salads and bean burgers. As Ovolo says in its veg Pledge Playbook, “’Vegetarian’ isn’t a restaurant idea.” The hotel group introduced in chef consultants like Ian Curly, Matthew Kenny, Roy Ner and Shannon Martinez to craft menus interesting to all types of diners.
ZA ZA TA at Ovolo The Valley in Brisbane based mostly its menu on the flavors of Tel Aviv, with dishes like cauliflower shawarma with curry leaf and inexperienced mango and black barley, cucumber and lime tabbouleh. In Melbourne, Lona Misa is Latin American. Monster Kitchen in Canberra has an Asian aptitude, with dishes like bush tomato tartare with wasabi and sesame, and a purple cauliflower steak with miso. The Alibi Bar & Kitchen in Woolloomooloo provides an eight-course chef’s tasting menu.
While the eating places are all veg, the hotel chain determined to go away some meat choices on convention and occasion menus. Maybe there will probably be a “12 months of the veg convention” in 2023?
Ovolo’s Vedge Pledge Playbook
Ovolo’s Vedge Pledge Playbook is an particularly attention-grabbing facet of the hotel assortment’s change to meatless. This nine-page doc is publicly obtainable and advises different hotel chains how to go veg. It leads with high causes to change, corresponding to treating the atmosphere with love and respect, consuming consciously to make the physique and thoughts really feel good and celebrating the rise of vegetarian delicacies. In line with its upbeat spin, the playbook doesn’t point out any lifeless animals.
The subsequent part talks about making ready for this change to veg with each inner and exterior messaging. It mentions that Ovolo had an overwhelmingly optimistic response to transitioning to plant-based delicacies, however you’ve gotten to be ready to lose some prospects. Also, some cooks. Guests must be ready forward of time in order that they’re not blindsided by the lack of steak.
“Don’t deal with what’s not on the menu — preserve the focus in your thrilling new meals,” the playbook stated. And don’t simply goal vegetarians and vegans. “Plant-based meals is for everybody. Reassure your friends that it doesn’t matter what their dietary type, they’re in for a tremendous eating expertise.”
The “designing your menu” part stresses creativity. “Balance your menu with dishes that vary from gentle to heavy, with a wide range of textures, flavors and methods, from smoking to fermentation to molecular methods,” the playbook stated. It additionally suggests some wonderful concepts, corresponding to serving a vegan excessive tea.
Drinks could be veg, too
The hotel group has additionally overhauled its bars to deal with vegan cocktails. Bartenders can substitute aquafaba for the egg whites historically utilized in drinks like pisco sours and gin fizzes. Some bars will add a seasonal focus. They additionally plan a robust non-alcoholic menu as a part of a well being-conscious route.
“Coming up with more healthy, vegetarian-led beverage choices has been a artistic problem that our crew has actually loved,” stated Andrea Gualdi, Ovolo’s newly appointed artistic beverage director. “We have entry to some extremely progressive Australian producers, each in the alcoholic and non-alcoholic classes, and we’re proud to symbolize extra of these producers throughout our new menus, with a robust deal with seasonality and native producers.”
Vegans, be excited
This is thrilling information for vegetarians and vegans touring in Australia and Hong Kong. And in all probability past, due to a ripple impact. As consciousness of the hyperlinks between animal consumption and the atmosphere rise, and extra folks stretch Meatless Monday to the occasional Tuesday and Wednesday as effectively, we’re hoping they are going to be happy by a cauliflower steak.
So far, Ovolo’s experiment has paid off.
“Our transfer to vegetarian eating has been much more profitable than we anticipated, and we now discover ourselves a part of a brand new wave of plant-based pioneers,” stated Ian Curley, Ovolo Group’s artistic companion. “The one massive lesson we’ve got discovered from our daring experiment: by no means underestimate your friends. A key focus for us has been making certain we’re creating one thing that also appeals to everybody — from vegans to flexitarians, and people who are merely eager on increasing their palate.”
Images through Ovolo Hotel