Vegan Dish From Cincinnati's ESSEN Kitchen Recognized Among PETA'S Top Faux-Fish Dishes of 2021

The eatery's brunch-fave "Bagel & Lox" is made with marinated tomato "lox," capers, onions, dill and plant-based cream cheese on a toasted bagel

click to enlarge ESSEN Kitchen - Photo: Facebook.com/EssenKitchen
Photo: Facebook.com/EssenKitchen
ESSEN Kitchen

Over-the-Rhine restaurant ESSEN recently earned national praise from animal rights organization PETA for one of its vegan dishes. The eatery's “Bagel & Lox” was selected as one of PETA’s Top Faux-Fish Dishes of 2021, which is a list of flavorful plant-based dishes across America.

ESSEN's dish is a toasted bagel with marinated tomato "lox," capers, onions, dill and plant-based cream cheese. It is considered a brunch favorite by customers who want an “everything bagel” without any meat or similar byproduct.

“ESSEN’s vegan twist on a quick classic is the perfect fish-friendly way to celebrate Pisces season,” PETA President Ingrid Newkirk says in a press release. “Every eatery on PETA’s list is making a splash with diners who recognize fish as the sensitive individuals they are, are concerned about the state of our oceans and rivers, or just want to reduce their cholesterol.”

ESSEN was one of six vegan eateries that received recognition in the annual list. According to PETA, the list is published each year to raise awareness of vegan seafood dishes that do not harm the global fish population. The animal rights organization claimed that more fish are killed for food annually than all other animals combined. In addition to protecting the species, eating plant-based dishes can also have health benefits, representatives from PETA maintain.

The organization believes that restaurants such as ESSEN “combat speciesism and stop climate change” by offering alternative meals that look similar to their meat counterparts but are entirely plant-based.

This is not the first distinction that the ESSEN Kitchen has received. The restaurant was also selected as the city's best vegan food by Cincinnati Magazine in 2019.

Along with being featured on PETA’s website, ESSEN will receive a framed certificate from the organization to display in their eatery.

In a recent Facebook post, ESSEN thanked PETA for the award and congratulated the other five recipients. The kitchen also promoted local bagel shop The Bagelry, saying "we couldn't have done it without you."

ESSEN is located at 1 Findlay St., Over-the-Rhine. 

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