Qatar’s First Vegan Cafe Stirs Interest
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
Gulf Times -- As Qatar continues to develop and introduce new culinary experiences to its people, Ghanim Al Sulaiti decided to take part in the ongoing innovations by introducing Qatar to its first vegan café.
“Evergreen Organics is the first vegan cafe in Qatar. We’ve opened back in September 2016, and it is a labor of love and passion,” says Al Sulaiti.
The reason, he said, he wanted to open a vegan cafe was to inspire people to change, live a better lifestyle and adopt a healthier plant-based diet.
“At the same time, it was created to give options to people; to show people that they can eat a delicious full meal with no meats, chicken, or fish and it is still satisfying and nutritious. That was our main target.”
Sitting in a tranquil ambience at Evergreen Organics at Qanat Quartier, Al Sulaiti said he got the inspiration to open the café from Bali and traveling around the world. Through traveling, he got the opportunity to meet and talk to vegans from across the globe. “I wanted to bring my experiences to one place, for people who don’t have the opportunity to travel or to see what I have seen. ”
“I think that is why a lot of people get inspired because we don’t have something like this in Doha. A lot of people have realized that it is easy enough to go vegan and to adopt a healthier lifestyle.”
Initial feedback from friends and community, which was a tad disappointing, did not deter the Qatari entrepreneur from following his dream. “People thought that in Doha no one would come here, but I think what people have seen is that people are thirsty for veganism, for healthy food, for real food, because you can eat vegan, but it could be junk.”
“This is real food, made with better ingredients and conscious cooking. And I think before evergreen there was no market and now there is a market and it is growing every day.”
The café is always busy with customers eager to try all the new and healthy food concoctions available to them.
Al Sulaiti adds: “There are a lot of people who come up telling me they are inspired to go vegan, especially Qataris. Most customers are not vegan; about 90% are not vegan but they love it and they come here every day.”
Evergreen Organics has banished misconceptions associated with vegan food.
“A lot of people come here and they ask do you only have salads? And I tell them to look at the menu; we only have three salads on the menu. Contrary to what people think, we have desserts, juices, smoothies, breakfast, lunch and dinner and many other options.
Nasser Al Khulaifi, a customer, told The Peninsula, “When I first visited Evergreen, I was skeptical because I am not a vegan. Vegan or not, this place is amazing in terms of the food, staff and friendly vibes.”