Business of the week: VX, the King’s Cross vegan deli proud to sell ‘junk food’

Rudy Penando outside VX in King's Cross. Picture: David Child

Rudy Penando outside VX in King's Cross. Picture: David Child - Credit: Archant

In a weekly feature, we profile a fascinating company doing business here in Islington. This week, we visit VX in Caledonian Road, the deli “trying to make veganism fun”.

Rudy Penando inside VX in King's Cross. Picture: David Child

Rudy Penando inside VX in King's Cross. Picture: David Child - Credit: Archant

Rudy Penando set up VX near King’s Cross after spotting something missing from London’s food offerings – vegan friendly junk food.

“I couldn’t find any shops doing this sort of thing,” he said. “So I had to do it myself.”

Opened in February 2010, the shop in Caledonian Road – short for “Vegan Cross” – sells a feast of vegetable-based treats.

Serving up cheese, chocolate, cake and coffee to name but a few, it has all the usual favourites you’d expect in a north London foodie’s paradise. The only difference is that they’re all free from animal products.


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“I didn’t want to produce what the UK usually has,” said Rudy, 43. “I wanted to do things a bit differently and break the mould by selling junk food – for vegans.”

There’s a bit of politics behind it. The VX website states: “For us, the best way to ensure the masses adopt a cruelty-free way of life that eliminates the abuse and exploitation of our animal chums is to offer people a seriously delicious alternative.”

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That’s a mission statement Rudy and his two staff surely share with Cookies and Scream, the vegan ice cream parlour in Holloway Road that featured in our “start-up of the week” column last year after branching out from its famed Camden base.

But Rudy told the Gazette: “It’s not the 1970s any more – we don’t have to be militant.”

He added: “We are trying to make veganism fun.”

The shop also sells clothes and accessories – again, of course, animal-free.

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