We wanted to give you a chance to get to know Chef Velvet “Chef V” as we gear up for her formal welcoming party – the Official Pride Event on September 30th. Don’t miss this exciting event with recording artists Monifah and Ayanna Gregory, plus live art with Gemynii, and surprise guests. Read on to learn about Chef V….. in her own words….
Hi, I am Chef Velvet and I am proud to launch my new vegan café, The Vegan Experience, inside the oldest African-American Cultural Center in the U.S. (the YMI Buildng) and the first vegan bar in Asheville, THE BLOCK off biltmore, owned by my activist friend, Cam MacQueen.
Cam and I are from the same hometown (Wilmington, NC) and have had the pleasure of working together for the past 10 years on numerous vegan projects in the MD/DC area, including festivals, fundraisers, a documentary in the making. Neither of us dreamed we’d end up in Asheville – let alone be working together in our old home state – but here we are and we’re thrilled with the awesome possibilities ahead!
My journey of becoming a chef began in Wilmington on my grandmother Martha’s farm. There I learned the importance of farm-to-table meals made with simple, wholesome ingredients. Years later, now a Washington, DC-based chef and food artist, I still use my grandmother’s secrets to feed a growing celebrity clientele including: Erykah Badu, Common, The Tankards, Dick Gregory, Lammon Rucker, to name a few. I’ve also been featured on the Bravo hit T.V. Show “Thicker Than Water.”
In addition to chefing for celebrity entertainers, I am also excited to serve communities less fortunate by bringing Vegan in the Hood to Asheville. We’ll teach ways to eat & cook healthfully and inexpensively. We’ll plant more community gardens in areas considered to be food deserts, and hire folks from the community. The passion of our collaboration with Cam and THE BLOCK off biltmore is to offer the tasty health benefits of the vegan experience to a wider, nonvegan audience, and to have fun in the process!
Please stop by and visit us at 39 S. Eagle Street at the corner of Market St. We’d love to get to know our new neighbors, have you enjoy a dinner with us and share your feedback. Remember, we don’t just offer meals, we offer a complete experience! And don’t miss the exciting Official Pride Event on September 30th. Visit the Event Page to learn more