Does St. Louis look like a city for vegan festivals? Do we want to be?
When it comes to the "Best Cities for Vegans and Vegetarians," St. Louis barely escaped the bottom third of the largest 100 U.S. cities — planting itself at No. 66.
In the list from personal finance website WalletHub, our fair burger- and bratwurst-loving city finished in the top half in two of the three major categories — with all categories accounting for one-third of the ranking.
When it comes to "diversity/accessibility," we were No. 39. The category looked at number of restaurants with vegan and vegetarian options; farmers markets and community gardens; juice, smoothie and salad bars; and vegetable nurseries.
For "affordability," we clocked in at No. 47, based mainly on the local cost of vegan and vegetarian meals in restaurants, and of those types of foods at grocery stores.
Averaging those two together and we're at No. 43 — until the "lifestyle" category sprouts up and drops us down to No. 76.
Some of the factors in this category were: overall vegetable and fruit consumption; and GrubHub’s list of cities ordering vegetarian or vegan meals. Fair enough.
The other criteria were number of vegan/vegetarian meetups and availability of vegan/vegetarian festivals.
Major neighbors with better marks were: Chicago (13); Nashville (18); Indianapolis (24); Kansas City (34); and Cincinnati (59). Trailing us were Louisville (72) and Memphis (95).
The top five cities for the meatless set: New York; Portland, Ore.; Orlando; Seatlle; and San Francisco.
The worst city in the U.S. is Baton Rouge, where they probably don't embrace plant-based boudin.