In a significant development, Aisha Pinky Cole, the CEO and Founder of Slutty Vegan, a renowned plant-based restaurant chain, announced via her Instagram account that the brand is set to establish a permanent location at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. This move is noteworthy given that Hartsfield-Jackson is the busiest airport in the United States. The announcement adds another feather to Cole’s cap, who was recently featured in Time Magazine’s “2023 Time100 Next” and has authored cookbooks and other publications.
The new Slutty Vegan outlet will be strategically situated on Concourse B of the airport. While the exact opening date remains undisclosed, the location is expected to attract a high volume of foot traffic, given the airport’s status as a major transportation hub. This expansion is in line with Slutty Vegan’s aggressive growth strategy, which has seen the establishment of 11 locations across the country.
Pinky Cole is no stranger to the culinary world or entrepreneurship. Before relocating to Atlanta, she operated Pinky’s Jamaican and American restaurant in Harlem, New York, while also working as a TV producer. A devastating fire in 2016 led her to move to Atlanta and pivot her career. Cole is an alumnus of Clark Atlanta University, graduating in 2009. She launched Slutty Vegan initially as a food truck in 2018 and opened her first brick-and-mortar restaurant a year later, just outside Atlanta.
Cole has diversified her brand by venturing into educational institutions and sports arenas. Recent openings include locations at Spelman College, Georgia Tech, and Truist Park. She has also authored a cookbook titled “Eat Plants B*tch” and is set to release a new book, “I Hope You Fail,” on October 10, 2023. Her Chik’N Head sandwich recently earned a spot on PEOPLE’s list of 50 Food Favs.
The new Slutty Vegan restaurant will be in good company, as it will be accompanied by ASW Distillery Flights & Bites, a Modern Market Eatery, and two Starbucks locations on the same concourse. Moreover, other culinary ventures such as Johnny’s Chicken & Waffles, Old Fourth Distillery + Kitchen, Duff’s Market, and Citizen’s Culinary Market are in the pipeline for Concourses C, E, and F.
Slutty Vegan’s reputation extends beyond just its customer base. The Family Vacation Guide recently named One Flew South, another restaurant at Hartsfield-Jackson, as the best airport restaurant globally, indicating the high standards of culinary offerings at the airport. Slutty Vegan’s entry is expected to elevate this status further.
The expansion into Hartsfield-Jackson is a calculated move that aligns with the airport’s plans to broaden its food and retail options. It also signifies Slutty Vegan’s ambition to tap into diverse markets and settings, from educational institutions to bustling airports. This is a strategic decision likely backed by data-driven insights, considering the high footfall and diverse consumer base at the airport.
The announcement of Slutty Vegan’s expansion to Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport marks a significant milestone in the brand’s journey. It not only validates the success and growth strategy of the plant-based restaurant chain but also underscores the airport’s commitment to offering diverse and high-quality food options to its travelers. As the details of the opening date remain under wraps, the food and beverage industry, along with the brand’s loyal customer base, will undoubtedly keep a close eye on this development.
As Slutty Vegan continues to expand its footprint, it will be interesting to observe how the brand leverages this new location to further its growth objectives. Will this move serve as a catalyst for future expansions into other high-traffic areas? Only time will tell.