Modern Loving this vegan comfort food

Vegan restaurant offers varying dishes for a new and exciting Omaha classic


Photo by Olivia Oeth

The Pesto Mozzarella Burger is made with the lentil seitan patty, fried mozzarella, pesto, arugula and garlic aioli in a toasted potato bun. I chose the fries for my side, but there were also options of potato salad and a house salad. The condiments included a sweet ketchup and an added ranch by request.

Olivia Oeth, News Director

Little variety is offered in Omaha for vegan specific diets considering the widespread culture of farm-raised meat and dairy. Although surrounded by such differing views, Modern Love creates a progressive environment for everyone to enjoy and experience an unusual type of meal locally. With an impressive average of 4.6 star ratings in the categories of food, service, ambiance and value, Modern Love had a promising dining experience awaiting me in Midtown.

The atmosphere under the night sky of the averagely sized restaurant was incredibly welcoming with string lights hanging from the high ceilings and a staff as sweet as candy. I waited a whopping 30 seconds for a table for one and was sat next to a variety of people ranging from local artists to curious tourists. 

After pondering for an entire day about what I wanted to indulge in, I began my meal with the Sriracha Honee Cauliflower Wings for ten dollars. The starter immediately satisfied my hunger from the day. While initially sweet, a sting is left in the mouth as an aftertaste. Drizzled around the plate was a hotter, more zesty sauce while the wings themselves were coated in a sugary layer. The cauliflower itself was sufficiently crusted, a usually hard task that needs the perfect recipe to achieve. I would almost say that these were love at first bite.

Complimenting my starter was an ice-cold glass of mango fisheye kombucha on tap that definitely did not aid in the fact that my mouth was already on fire from the wings. The five dollars of fermentation only added to the spices dancing on my tongue, however the beverage alone was delightful although the hint of mango was hard to detect. 

My thirteen dollar Pesto Mozzarella Burger was next with a seitan patty and a side of fries. The name was not kidding when it said pesto; this burger was exactly what the name and description provided. The seitan burger was a new experience for me that was less than expected. I do not think it was the chef’s fault for the outcome but rather the general blandness of the seitan wheat blend. The texture was a bit mushy for a burger and I think it is unfair to call the sandwich a burger in the first place. The potato bun, however, was refreshing and a fascinating difference from the traditional vegan recipe; it was softer and more cushiony. 

As I washed down the burger with complimentary water and my kombucha, I treated myself to one of my personal favorites: the fries. Fries have a special place in my heart as it is and these fries did not fall short of that love. There was an ideal mixture of crunchy and soft fries with dipping sauces of wide varieties. Ketchup was included with the deal, but I added on ranch for a dollar more. This ranch does not taste like other ranch. It is whipped and smooth with less of a mayonnaise flavor than the usual non-vegan dressing. The only substance it added to the meal was a bit of moisture. 

I decided to go out with a bang, despite having ate my weight in vegan comfort food, with an eight dollar Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake. This shake was incredible. If handed to an average person on the street, they would have no way of telling this dessert was dairy-free. The rich and creamy blend with coconut whip on top was the perfect way to end a long night. Compared to a fast-food version of the same drink, I would take the Modern Love spin any day. 

If I were able to change one thing about this experience, it would be the pricing. Although understandable considering the rarity of this type of restaurant, my bank account did take quite the hit. Specifically, the drinks were what drew my attention to the bill. The shake was a whopping eight dollars for only 16 ounces of deliciousness. 

Make sure to follow @modernloveomaha to check out weekly specials and more impressive meals that are good for the soul and earth.

Photo by Olivia Oeth
The Sriracha Honee Cauliflower Wings were garnished with black sesame seeds, radishes, scallions and lime. The drizzle circling the wings had a zest that was evened out by the coated wings themselves with arugula settled on the bottom to combat the sting as well. The kombucha paired nicely with the meal as a whole and had an agreeable lime to add a bit more gusto to the beverage.