Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01



DISH Brandon Byxbe: All hail the kale king
Special to the online edition of Windy City Times by Jamie Schmid

This article shared 3819 times since Mon Oct 26, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Brandon Byxbe, 33, cooked his way all over Chicago before opening The Amazing Kale Burger. At 741 Howard St. in Evanston, the restaurant combines a hipster hangout with a Barnum and Bailey Circus, and serves variations on only one dish: a veggie burger. The raw food chef dishes on his emerging venture, the vegan trend, and his problem with bathrooms.

Windy City Times: When did you fall in love with kale?

Brandon Byxbe: I was working at farmers' markets, and this farmer next to me was just giving me all his leftover kale. Finally, I was like, "I can't even eat all of this." I didn't want to waste it, so I ended up typing "kale burger" into Google. This really terrible recipe came up. I was like OK, well, I can make a better kale burger.

WCT: How much kale goes into the one patty?

BB: Tons.

WCT: How much is in a ton?

BB: About three kale leaves per patty. It is the heaviest ingredient by weight.

WCT: What makes the burger so wonderful?

BB: It has nine different veggies. There are no stupid fillers. It is straight up vegetables. That is super rare even for vegan food. I lot of it is just made out of crap. That is not how I want to eat.

WCT: Can you spill the secret ingredients?

BB: It's got onion, garlic, jalapeno, red pepper, zucchini, cremini mushrooms, tomatoes, potatoes, black bean, gluten-free oats, garbanzo bean flour and salt.

WCT: Are you ever worried that "clean foods" will go out of style? What would you do if that happened?

BB: No. It's just going to keep getting better and better. People are starting to care about what goes into their bodies. You know everyone is getting sick. Everyone has huge allergies now. They were not there before we started f**king with the food so bad. We really do need to get back to just veggies, and it is coming.

WCT: What inspires the carnival vibe of the restaurant? A lot of the tables and decorations look like antiques.

BB: I opened this on like a penny budget. You know what I am sayin'? Everything was donated. I did a Kickstarter. I mean all this stuff I found in the trash. Straight up, I like garbage picked all my décor. I didn't have money.

WCT: Serious question: Is your favorite food kale?

BB: I am a donut junkie. Donuts and cinnamon rolls are like my favorite meals. And cake. They call me the cake pusher here because I am always like, "Do you guys want cake? I got cake! Cake, cake, cake!"

WCT: You are talking about vegan cake, right?

BB: Oh yes, definitely.

WCT: Your staff is all LGBT. Is that an important issue for you?

BB: It is very important to me, actually. I want this to be a very inviting and comforting space for everyone. I don't know what the hell is wrong with people these days. I will not be a part of the problem, that's for sure.

WCT: I'm assuming that's why you have a gender-neutral bathroom?

BB: Everyone here is queer. I am transgender. People are super uptight about bathrooms. I wanted the [gender-neutral] sign to be big. It's just a bathroom. You are going pee, straight-up. What is the problem here? I have been chased out of bathrooms personally, and it is a very bad experience. It is very traumatic and horrible. That will never happen here.

WCT: Let's say 10 years from now, are you head chef of a five-star raw food restaurant?

BB: Hell, no. I don't want to be a millionaire. I want to pay my rent and have a good time. I am not even in Whole Foods now, and it is not even on my to-do list. People get burned when they grow too big too fast, and I don't want to do that.

WCT: Why does expanding to Whole Foods have to be the definition of success?

BB: Exactly—it doesn't. I just want to be happy.

This article shared 3819 times since Mon Oct 26, 2015
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

SAVOR Sunny Bowls
Looking for a comforting, healthful option for lunch? Then look no further than Sunny Bowls: Souper Food (theMart, #201.;, which specializes in various soups? Part of the food court at theMART (which some also call ...

Gay News

SAVOR The Press Room
At The Press Room (1134 W. Washington Blvd..;, a lot of patrons may encounter the unexpected. The West Loop restaurant—which is only open Wednesday through Sunday evenings—has undergone quite ...

Gay News

Andersonville Chamber of Commerce to present Andersonville Homecoming
--From a press release - CHICAGO (August 26, 2021) — The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce (ACC) is pleased to announce Andersonville Homecoming, a three-night, two-day outdoor festival featuring live entertainment, local artisans and merchants, food ...

Gay News

COVID FDA grants full approval to Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine
On Aug. 23, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA granted full approval to the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for people age 16 and older, media outlets reported. This is the first coronavirus vaccine approved by the ...

Gay News

SAVOR South Branch Tavern & Grille
Before taking a bite of anything at South Branch Tavern & Grille (100 S. Wacker Dr.;, patrons are likely to be impressed. The reason lies in the picturesque views surrounding the spot. Ensconced near some ...

Gay News

SAVOR Britches and brunch at The Dearborn
I've had the pleasure of dining at The Dearborn (145 N. Dearborn St.; several times—but it's always been a weekday outing. Recently, I met a friend for Sunday brunch. The results were both expected ...

Gay News

SAVOR Smashburger
With hundreds of fast-food restaurants throughout Chicago, it might seem like the last thing the city needs is another burger spot However, the Denver-based chain Smashburger is in the Windy City—at a pretty busy location, near ...

Gay News

Lips Drag Queen Show Palace celebrates two years with grand reopening
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Lips, the ultimate in drag dining, today announced they will celebrate two years on Chicago's iconic Motor Row with reimagined performances, a new show night and a dynamic new cast to deliver its one-of-a-kind ...

Gay News

SAVOR Cobblestone Restaurant
It's a case of "better late than never" for Cobblestone (4337 N. Lincoln St.; After selling his Bohemian House restaurant in River North, Cobblestone Restaurant owner Dr. Markus Chwajol—who ...

Gay News

Taste of River North cancelled
On July 29, the River North Residents Association, along with theMART and Duff Entertainment, announced the cancellation of the 2021 edition of Taste of River North. The event was slated to take place Aug. 20-21 at ...

Gay News

Taste of Andersonville returns Wed., Aug. 11
--From a press release - CHICAGO (July 28, 2021) — The Andersonville Chamber of Commerce (ACC) is excited to welcome back one of its most popular summer events: the annual Taste of Andersonville on Wed., Aug. 11, 5-8 p.m. This year's ...

Gay News

SAVOR The Smith
Not too long ago, I sang the praises of "Red Sauce Sundays" at The Smith Restaurant + Bar (400 N. Clark St.; Starting at 5 p.m. each Sunday, this ultimate comfort meal features a chicken ...

Gay News

Black Restaurant Week-Midwest in Chicago July 23-Aug. 1
Black Restaurant Week, LLC, joins the No Crumb Left Behind campaign by hosting its second campaign in Chicago on July 23-Aug. 1. ...

Gay News

Taste of Chicago To-Go" starts Wednesday
--From a press release - Taste of Chicago To-Go" starts Wednesday with food vendors and food trucks; Chicago City Market vendors; Chicago SummerDance instructors; House City DJs; author Marisel Vera; Taste of Chicago favorites Eli's Cheesecake, Robinson's No. 1 Ribs and ...

Gay News

SBA: Illinois restaurants received $1.4 billion in pandemic funds
The Small Business Administration (SBA) announced funds for its $29-billion restaurant pandemic relief program were exhausted—leaving nearly two-thirds of applicants out of the money, The Chicago Tribune reported. In Illinois ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.