Loving Hut: Naples’ Only 100 Percent Vegan Restaurant
Aug 29, 2014 08:50AM
● By Linda Sechrist
The Loving Hut in Naples is a part of a fast-growing, international chain of restaurants with more than 120 branches worldwide. Co-owner of the vegetarian restaurant, Brenna Tu, is a local resident who moved to Southwest Florida from California. Like her other family members, Tu wanted to dine out at healthy restaurants that served vegan cuisine. When she could not find what she wanted, the answer became obvious. “I got a business partner, bought the franchise and opened Loving Hut in 2010,” she says.
Tu has an unusual outlook on Loving Hut, which serves plant-based menu items. “We like to think of our restaurant as a starting point for anyone who wants to consider a transition to a plant-based diet. Vegan and vegetarian meals are still an obscure possibility to many individuals, and we feel good when we get to introduce open-minded individuals to healthy options because we recognize that they are becoming aware of what they want to put into their body and possibly looking for a healthier lifestyle,” explains Tu. “We are excited to be part of a local trend in restaurants that are not only using local produce in their menu items, but also including raw dishes on their menus.”
She notes, “Our parent company has guidelines that we are happily aligned with: first, we must prepare 100 percent vegan menu items using non-GMO and local organic produce as much as possible. Otherwise, our chef can prepare menus that are different from those at other Loving Huts. The common thread is that all the restaurants consciously choose to serve as a beacon of light for an alternative way of living that is healthier, compassionate and peaceful. It’s the way to a sustainable planet.”
Loving Hut’s local menu includes a delicious assortment of vegan appetizers, soups, salads and rice and noodle entrees with tofu, as well as vegan desserts. The restaurant also offers fresh fruit smoothies and other hot and cold beverages.