Atlas Monroe – Vegan Food Carnivores Like

atlasI'm not sure if entrepreneurial siblings Jonathan and Deborah Torres meant for Atlas Monroe – their vegan food and catering company – to appeal to carnivores or not, but it does. When a vegan dish wins “Best Dish” at the 2018 National Fried Chicken Festival, you know carnivores like the stuff. If you look at the photos of their food, you'd think it was a comfort food catalogue. They sell “fried chicken,” “bacon,” “ribs” and more.

The thing is, their “chicken” is made from wheat protein. Everything Atlas Monroe sells is plant based and totally vegan, but it's designed to appeal to everyone. Atlas was a near instant success in the San Francisco area when they started out in 2017. They basically offered a delivery service for their fresh cooked vegan meals. As word got out, demand rose and they started offering meals to ship.

It's no surprise “fried chicken” was the first dish Atlas veganized, it was Deborah's favorite dish growing up and she adapted her mother's recipe when she switched to veganism. The reason she, and her whole family, switched to a vegan diet was to help her dad overcome diabetes. Little did she know is that move would lead her to the Shark Tank. The Torres' likely want a Shark's cash to help them grow their business, but do the Sharks like the vegan fare?

My Take on Atlas Monroe

My oldest daughter is almost vegan (cheese is her dietary achilles heel), so I sample quite a bit of vegan fare when she visits. I like the food she prepares, but I'm still a carnivore at heart. That's why this company appealed to me. If a vegan dish is chosen “best dish” at a fried chicken festival, it's got to be yummy.

I wanted to order some of the fried chicken, but they are “SOLD OUT” of everything on the company website. My plan was to sample the chicken, then try to trick my daughter with it when she comes to visit next. I'm in for this business because I'm curious, but being sold out of product on the eve of a Shark Tank appearance doesn't look good for them.

Are Sharks Vegan?

One of the entrepreneurs turns down a million dollar offer this week and I think it's Deborah and Jonathon. The press release says “entrepreneurs from San Jose, California, with a plant-based version of a guilty pleasure make a shocking decision on Shark Tank.” Fried chicken is indeed a guilty pleasure and turning down a million bucks would be shocking.

If that offer was made, then the Sharks liked the food. Unfortunately, if Deborah and Jonathan leave without a deal, it may sink their business. If they can't sell food on show night, they may never recover. That said, I still want to try the chicken, so I hope they do!

About Rob Merlino

Entrepreneur, auteur, raconteur. Rob Merlino is a blogger and writer who enjoys the Shark Tank TV show and Hot Dogs. A father of five who freelances in a variety of publications, Rob has a stable of websites including Shark Tank Blog, Hot Dog Stories, Rob Merlino.com and more.

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