The nationally acclaimed author and chef Isa Chandra Moskowitz has introduced the first fully vegan restaurant in Omaha: Modern Love.
A Brooklyn native and a nationally recognized author, Moskowitz initially wanted to introduce her vegan culinary practice to a place without previous access to this type of food, said restaurant manager James Walmsley. Her interest for these demographics brought her to Omaha.
Walmsley explained that the opening of the restaurant was a low-risk experiment that had proven to give rewarding results. He believes the combination of foods that do not require animal use and Moskowitz’s style of cooking have attracted not only Omaha-based people, but also travelers from all over the U.S.
Modern Love’s various online presences, including their website and Twitter, deem the restaurant “Nebraska’s little farm-to-table vegan restaurant” and “swanky vegan comfort food,” and it seems like Creighton students would agree.
“The food was delicious,” Arts & Sciences junior Sydney Arp said. “It’s a must-try for sure.”
Walmsley said that the food offered at Modern Love intends to demonstrate to people that in order to sustain a vegan lifestyle, the deprivation of fatty and sugary foods is not necessary. The items on the menu of the restaurant range from cheeseburgers with potato fries to macaroni and cashew cheese.
“If I had to describe Modern Love in one word, it would be ‘comfort,’” Walmsley said.
“Comfort” may also be fit to describe the relationship between cook and customer — the restaurant keeps up a friendly, playful social media presence, often encouraging customers to come and “get cozy” with their food and wine options.
Just this Tuesday, Moskowitz tweeted jokingly, “I just had to delete a tweet 4 times because I couldn’t get it right. But I promise my cooking is better than my tweeting,” before she signed off, “ - Isa.”
The menu of the restaurant varies with the seasons. Because Modern Love buys supplies from local farmers, the ingredients used in its dishes are constantly changing. Moskowitz teased the upcoming seasonal dishes on Twitter with the hashtag #FallMenuSpoilerAlerts, which included squash tacos and pumpkin cheescake — all organic, of course.
The restaurant, currently located on South 50th Street, is looking into expanding in the near future. Moskowitz is currently paring up with a Brooklyn-based vegan shoe store, Moo Shoes, to open another vegan restaurant. The opening date has not yet been released.
Modern Love is also looking into opening other locations in Omaha. According to Walmsley, though they remain unsure, the Old Market and Dundee areas are among the options for consideration. The new place will have a similar short menu, but it will include options for brunch.
“The space of the restaurant is a little limited, but the food compensates for that,” Arts and Sciences junior Sarah Massop said.
Moreover, Modern Love was awarded with Restaurant of the Year during the Veggie Awards of 2015.
The restaurant opens from Tuesdays to Thursdays from 5 p.m. to 9:15 p.m., and Fridays and Saturdays from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Reservations are required, but can be made easily online at modernloveomaha.com. You can also follow Modern Love on Twitter at @ModernLoveOmaha.