HYDE PARK — Hyde Park about is as far as you can get in Chicago from a meat-lover’s paradise.
A DNAinfo and Yelp analysis of Chicago restaurants found that Hyde Park has dramatically more vegan options than the city average and is the only neighborhood where vegan food topped the list.
When comparing Hyde Park's restaurant scene to all of Chicago's, there are proportionately 12 times more vegan restaurants in the South Side neighborhood as compared with the city as a whole.
Hyde Park has two exclusively vegan restaurants, B’Gabs Goodies and Native Foods, and a plethora of restaurants with a vegan option on the menu.
Gabrielle Darvassy, the owner of B'Gabs Goodies, said it makes sense that Hyde Park would rank high.
"There are entire communities that have not one vegan option," Darvassy said.
It's not surprising that the diet that cuts out all animal products would be popular in a highly educated and health-conscious neighborhood like Hyde Park.
"You have a student population that is adventurous in their diet," Darvassy said. "My clientele comes from all over the place."
B’Gabs Goodies, 1450 E. 57th St., takes the diet to a whole new level, offering a menu of almost exclusively raw dishes that also cuts out soy, agave, peanuts and just about any other ingredient a customer may want.
Darvassy said when the restaurant started in Woodlawn it did a fair amount of business serving patients at the University of Chicago's hospital who are on a highly restrictive diet not out of choice, but out of necessity.
B’Gabs Goodies will alter any dish to meet the unique dietary restrictions of their customers.
"Now that we're on 57th Street, we're getting more Hyde Park people," said Darvassy, who makes three vegan dishes every day just for the Divinity School at the University of Chicago.
Hyde Park was also found to have a higher concentration of Caribbean food than other neighborhoods, but it is the northern boundary of a wealth of Caribbean cooking.
Caribbean tops the list in South Shore, Grand Crossing and Chatham, but nowhere more than Woodlawn.
Woodlawn has 3,179 percent more Caribbean restaurants than the city average.
Sandwiches topped the list in Kenwood.
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