Contra Costa chefs roll out menu of vegan dishes for October

Whether you’re a vegan, vegetarian, or omnivore looking to eat lighter, the Contra Costa Vegan Chef Challenge will bring you new menu choices throughout the month.

Chefs at 14 restaurants have answered the call to put at least three new vegan dishes on their menus in October – and diners will have the chance to vote for their favorites, according to challenge organizers Sheri Bjornson of Alamo and Megan Kammerer and Nisso Stanley, both from Martínez.

Look for plant-based dishes on Italian, French, Russian, American menus and more: Burmese Pickled Ginger Salad at Aung May LiKa in Concord, Stuffed Pumpkin at Babushka in Walnut Creek, Romaine Pizza at Homage in Martinez and “Pana Citrus cotta” with a vegan Snickerdoodle cookie at Reve in Lafayette.

Other participating restaurants are Plate & Vine at the Hilton and The Lettuce Inn (Concord); Crumbs, Esin Restaurant & Bar and Melo’s Pizza & Pasta (Danville); Gianni’s Italian Bistro (San Ramon); and Denica’s Real Food Kitchen, Il Fornaio (weekday lunch only), Lokanta, and Va de Vi Bistro & Wine Bar (Walnut Creek).

After going around the county, it’s time to vote. Head to the website – – to vote for the best appetizer, soup, salad, sandwich, main course and dessert. You can vote until October 31; Challenge winners will be announced in early November.