Last June just after Veg Fest, Daiya started trickling into Ottawa stores, much to the immense excitement of vegans across the city and beyond.
For the uninitiated, Daiya is the first vegan “cheese” that’s actually really good.
OK, that may be a bit subjective. But only a bit. It melts, and it substitutes perfectly for mozzarella and cheddar shreds in a wide variety of culinary applications. And, did I mention that it tastes good?
Daiya products do not contain many common allergens including soy, dairy (casein or lactose) gluten, egg, peanuts, and tree nuts (excluding coconut).
At my house, we buy cheddar Daiya by the five pound bag at Rainbow Foods. It’s imply the most cost effective way for a family of four to get its fix. But most normal people buy Daiya in little half pound bags that could be purchased only at select health food stores.
That is, until now. Today I spotted Daiya at Loblaws on Baseline and Merivale. My Facebook post to that effect garnered an enthusiastic response, with other Daiya sightings shared as the excitement grew. It’s not just that Daiya is more easily available for vegans and vegetarians who want it, it’s the sheer excitement that a cherished vegan substitute is being prominently displayed in front of a mainstream, non-vegan audience. How many people will see it and give it a try, who otherwise wouldn’t because they’d never seen it?
So in addition to the usual suspects (Rainbow Foods, Market Organics, Natural Food Pantry), and Loblaws Baseline/Merivale, Daiya has also been spotted at Superstore and Independent stores in Orleans.
Please share in the comments if you’ve spotted Daiya somewhere else in Ottawa!
NCVA volunteer Deb Gleason put it best: “This makes me so happy. Daiya has gone mainstream. LOVE IT.”