Best Vegan Metal Bar: The Highline

This was a very close race, but the winner is The Highline by a soy nugget. Jokes aside, this 3-year-old hardcore Capitol Hill eatery combines dietary activism and ear-splitting distortion like no other establishment in town. While you’re enjoying a severe dose of riffage, you can also enjoy a side of “Satan Fingers” (fried seitan strips), “Seamonster Linguine” (complete with soy-based imitation fish and a cashew white sauce), or “The Crazy Train,” a breaded soy-chicken sandwich with ranch dressing. As one bartender recently explained to me, even the booze is animal-friendly. Many brands of beer, wine, and spirits use some form of animal product—from isinglass (fish swim-bladder collagen) to gelatin and carmine (crushed insect pigment)—to clarify or color their inebriants, but you won’t find them at the Highline. The venue’s musical talent, chosen with equal care, features select picks from the deep local well of heavy hitters alongside obscure traveling metal acts. Even outside show hours, you can still enjoy a dynamite selection of pinball and arcade games or a house-infused cocktail on their balcony.

 
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