Harrogate cafe is a ‘hidden gem’ for vegans


Last updated Oct 12, 2021
Claire Beecroft is the chef and co-owner of Option Ve.

Mushroom burgers, non-dairy cheesecakes, carrot and ginger smoothies. A vegan cafe hidden away on the outskirts of the town centre is serving up much more than twigs and leaves.

Option Ve, 108 Mayfield Grove in Harrogate, has a fully vegan menu and, while it may not be for everyone, it is certainly drawing in customers from across the town and even the country.

It has not been the easiest start for owners Claire Beecroft and David Mitchell. They took over what used to be Bica Cafe and Bistro over a year ago and have changed a lot in that time.

Like many businesses, coronavirus has been a big challenge for Option Ve. It was difficult timing for the cafe, which had been closed for a couple of months to switch from vegetarian to vegan, and reopened just days before lockdown.

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Option Ve adapted to offer home deliveries and reopened the doors for a second time this year on July 10.

She wants people to know that vegan food can be more than twigs and leaves.

Claire Beecroft, who is the chef and co-owner of Option Ve, told the Stray Ferret:

“It is going well, really well. We are just getting the word out there that we have gone fully vegan. Coming from a chef’s point of view I have opened my world up in creative ways. It is incredible how you can make pasta, pizza and chocolate brownies in a vegan way that is good for you.”

Food is not the only thing on the menu. When social distancing measures relax, they hope to ramp up their cookery demonstrations, supper clubs and workshops on health and wellbeing.

This is part of the Stray Ferret’s ‘hidden gem’ series. We are trying to highlight small independent businesses. They need to be tucked away but growing in popularity with an eye-catching and unique product or approach. Send us an email with your nominations.

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