• Operation Pancake: Green Leaves Vegan Update

    July 15th, 2009mr meanergreen leaves (NOT VEGAN), LA restaurants, other

    We recently received a letter from somebody claiming to represent Green Leaves Vegan (see below). You may recall that when we tested their food in the original Operation Pancake, samples from several food items showed as positive for Casein and Egg.

    We’re delighted to make available the information, reproduced below, where Green Leaves Vegan’s representative is categorically stating that the food at Green Leaves Vegan is, in fact, vegan. We also completely retract any assertion (expressed or implied) that the food available now at that restaurant is not vegan.

    As we stated in the original post, the tests we performed were a “snapshot of the moment in time”, and positive results for traces of the non-vegan contaminants are restricted purely to the samples that we obtained at that time.

    We’re not able to re-test new samples from Green Leaves Vegan, but would gladly reproduce tests from a certified food laboratory.

    Also, we can confirm that Mr. Jeff Mann is an active attorney at the State Bar of California. His detailed record can be found here.

    From: Jeff Mann (jeffmannlaw@att.net)
    Date: July 15, 2009 3:58:33 PM PDT
    Cc: marnow6@yahoo.com
    Subject: Green Leaves vegan

    This office represents Green Leaves Vegan In Los Angeles Ca.Your website quarrygirl.com indicates that my clients food registers “overload” for Casein in my clients cheese dishes.and registers high for egg content in both it’s chicken and fish dishes.Your site contines to allege that my client is misleading it’s customers. The facts are that Green Leaves Vegan is vegan and is verified by the Los Angeles Health Dept. Green Leaves has passed all city inspections regarding it’s vegan menu. The information yoou have provided is false, malicious and defamatory. My clients business has suffered as a direct result of you website.You have 10 days to retract your comments about my clients restaurant on your website in a clear and noticable way. My client is even willing to allow you to retest his food. Failure to perform the above will result in legal action against you.Please be guided accordingly. Jeff Mann Attorney at Law. 3660 Wilshire bl. #522 Los Angeles Ca 90010 213-930-1902.

    Tags: ,

87 responses to “Operation Pancake: Green Leaves Vegan Update” RSS icon

  • Maybe green leaves shouldve thought of this before lying to customers through their teeth for years. Not a vegan restaurant, now or ever.

  • 1. I question if the City of Los Angeles “tests” vegan food as being free of animal products, by-products or trace amounts of animal products or by-products.

    2. If I was a lawyer and noticed the misspellings and typographical errors in the about email, I would severely reprimand my staff.

    3. The information provided can not be false or misleading if it’s a “snap shot” in time. The “snap shot” could represent exactly that, a moment when they were allegedly found to be selling food that contained animal products, by-products or traces of animal products or by-products.

    4. I like sliced avocado on whole wheat bread with a drizzle of olive oil, fresh pepper and coarse sea salt.

  • The letter states, “The facts are that Green Leaves Vegan is vegan and is verified by the Los Angeles Health Dept. Green Leaves has passed all city inspections regarding it’s vegan menu.” This seems to imply that the city verifies “veganness,” but don’t they just inspect for cleanliness/health code violations?

    (Also, can you tell the lawyer the difference between “it’s” and “its”?)

  • who is the other guy copied on the email. is that the cowardly owner who obviously got the shittiest lawyer around (the guy can’t even write or spell) to do his dirty work? pitiful.

  • I agree with everyone else here pointing out that there are way too many mistakes in that lawyer’s email for him to be legit. I looked him up in the link provided, and it seems that Jeff Mann has some strikes against him:

    “JEFF A. MANN [#115932], 51, of Los Angeles was suspended for two years, stayed, placed on two years of probation and was ordered to take the MPRE within one year. The order took effect Sept. 28, 2006.

    Mann stipulated to three counts of misconduct in three matters.”

  • How did he manage to pass the bar with that terrible grammar and misspelling?
    I smell BS!

  • lol @ the idea that the health department gives two shits about checking if vegan food is actually vegan.

    Also, he misspelled ‘its.’

  • sounds like the san fernando valley college of law is turning out some fine lawyers.

    i’d like to see proof of green leaves’s business “suffering”, every time i’ve driven by there, it’s business as usual. the only thing i can think of is all of that money they’re now spending at whole foods buying actual vegan cheese.

    and yeah, last time i checked, the health department didn’t verify if foods were vegan or not.

  • what a joke. delete!

  • jeff mann,
    yoou suck. yoou spelling suck worse than yyyouuouu.

  • Jenn: It gets better! Read the FULL thing, and check out the PDF:


    JEFF A. MANN [#115932], 51, of Los Angeles was suspended for two years, stayed, placed on two years of probation and was ordered to take the MPRE within one year. The order took effect Sept. 28, 2006.

    Mann stipulated to three counts of misconduct in three matters.

    In the first, three people involved in an auto accident hired Mann to represent them in a personal injury action. The clients received settlement checks, but Mann did not respond to numerous demands for reimbursement by an insurer, which sued the clients. Mann also did not make any reimbursements on his clients’ behalf. He stipulated that he failed to perform legal services competently.

    In another personal injury case he took on a contingency basis, Mann settled his four clients’ claims for $6,788. He disbursed partial payment of $1,000 to a medical provider for treatment of two clients and gave two $500 checks to the clients. Only after the clients complained to the State Bar did Mann negotiate the other two medical bills and disburse their money. He stipulated that he failed to promptly pay his clients’ medical bills.

    In the third matter, also a personal injury case he took on a contingency basis, he received settlement funds from an insurance company, and although he gave his client his share, he did not pay his medical bills. More than two years after the first demand for reimbursement of $3,248, Mann paid $2,176 as final payment. He stipulated that he failed to perform legal services competently.

    In mitigation, Mann had no record of discipline, he demonstrated remorse and he cooperated with the bar’s investigation.

  • i’m going to call him later and offer up my spell check services. i think spell check came with my mac.

  • @scott – sounds like he probably would try to get out of paying you.

  • i hate bad grammar even more than casein. jeff is a m-e-s-s.

  • Yoou, please be guided accordingly.and contines both it’s chicken!

    -the Los Angeles Health Dept.

  • First off: in order for a statement to be defamatory, it must be false and malicious and thus Mr. Jeff Mann is quite the redundant lawyer.

    And, as it seems, quite the bad one as well.

    Defamation my ass. It doesn’t matter if the information is a “snap shot” in time. The fact is that the food was tested legitimately, and the tests failed. This is proof of truth behind the blog’s statements– and if a statement is true, it cannot be defamation and any allegations of defamation would not hold up in court.

    Blah, blah, blah, scare tactics. Green Leaves “Vegan” can go suckit, and so can their crappy lawyer.


    I appreciate the position Quarrygirl finds itself in, and appreciate them posting this letter. This just convinces me all the more that Green Leaves Vegan is not worth my business. In all cases, when asked about their ingredients, they were confrontational. Now this letter from a lawyer that doesn’t have even the most rudimentary of grammar and spelling skills trying to bully the site?

    Message received, Green Leaves! We won’t be visiting ever again, jerks!

  • Oh lordy. The bad grammar had my head spinning. I think my vegan dog can spell better.

  • How disgusting! This entire ordeal has made me glad, for the first time, to be a Cincinnatian. We only have one vegan restaurant, but it is an honest, family business that I trust. It really makes me angry that they can’t just say they are sorry. I hope they go out of business.

  • Wow, so instead of acting mature and promising its customers that a mistake like that wouldn’t happen again, they opted to go for an attorney. Ok.

    Green Leaves – all you really had to do is apologize, clean up your act, and offer to have your food retested.

    But you opted to intimidate our favorite bloggers thereby alienating…probably the rest of the vegan blogosphere. Good job!

    I have also worked for attorneys for all of my adult life and that e-mail REEKS of pure bullying. Really, Mr. Mann should have sent you a FORMAL letter THROUGH the mail if this were a SERIOUS matter.

  • Jamestwizzle Jay-Dog

    Holy crap this guy works in the building that’s a block away from mine.

  • When the Green Leaves in WeHo opened, just before all of this, I went in to grab a take out menu. I asked the girl working what time they closed. She said 5pm. I said 5? She said yes, 5pm. It was 6:30pm. Then I looked at the menu listed closing time & tried to chat w/her & realized she didn’t understand english at all. Whatever you think of this whole thing, I will say this–there is nothing I hate more than a lawyer who scams a naive clients. For all we know they could have gone to him to help clear up the situation and make nice, and he saw a $$ opportunity. He sounds like the type–he’s clearly just making shit up in his letter.

    Not to defend vegan restaurants false advertising-there is no excuse and if they did knowingly serve non vegan food under false pretenses they are reaping what they sowed. But if these folks hired a lawyer like this, I can imagine them being scammed by distributors claiming there product is vegan. Maybe I just have a bleeding heart, but it occurs to me they could lose their business & everything they have worked for simply because they were taken advantage of. I don’t know, just seems like vegatarians & vegans should be a compassionate community. Maybe instead of jumping to the worst conclusion & getting so angry we could just approach the restaurant directly with our concerns & give them a chance to make things right. If they refuse, well then, all bets are off then aren’t they. I know for a fact the last few restaurants in that space in WeHo barely lasted a few weeks. Piss off the vegans, they won’t make it that long. Make it right, loyal customers. It would be in there best interest to make it right.

    That’s all I got. Mock away!

  • @ freddysbored – we did contact the restaurant for feedback, and in a very compassionate way. You can see what happened in this post:


    (Transcribed here for your convenience): “….. we contacted them by ‘phone for a quote. A lady who picked up when I asked to speak with a manager screamed at me “DON’T COME HERE AGAIN” and hung up the ‘phone.”

  • Well, all you can do is make a good faith effort, & if they aren’t going to appreciate it, so be it. There are plenty of other choices. Here’s to hoping more open up in my neck of the woods (WeHo)–takes me forever to get over to Pure Luck for potato pals!

  • Litigation. The last refuge of a scoundrel.

  • @freddysbored take the 101 from Santa Monica Blvd. to Melrose. La Cienega to Pure Luck in 10 minutes, and I’m not kiddin’ PoPals are the BEST!!!

  • Jesus, now I’m really boycotting this place. What assholes, to send a threatening letter to a vegan blog! I’m not even vegan, but do like to eat vegan most of the time and Green Leaves is in my ‘hood. These guys suck and their “lawyer” writes like a second grader.

  • Can someone please show this man how to use the spellcheck feature!!!

  • Reading this makes me feel like I’m in J school again, and not just because I want to attack the monitor with a red sharpie.

    What’s the number one defense for libel, kids? THE TRUTH. Defamation is one of the *hardest* cases to prove, mainly because the burden of proof is on the plaintiff. Not only do they have to prove that the libel or slander is FALSE, they have to prove that it quantifiably damaged the person/business, and they have to prove malice or gross negligence on the part of the defendant — neither of which quarrygirl can be accused of. If anything, quarrygirl was totally upfront and even kind in how they obtained their information and presented it – it was fair, done via due process and proper investigation. Greenleaves’ case would be dismissed in heartbeat – there was no false information, no quanitifiable damage, and no intent to be malicious or be grossly negligent.

    I got an A in media law.

    I say you retract your retraction.

  • KItty- The sentence you mentioned does seem structured to imply just what you stated, but in reality, the two are mutually exclusive. My flat-foot search-“enginuity” does not show any evidence of there being any vegan certification offered through the city or county of Los Angeles.

    Interestingly, I also searched the County Dept. of Public Health for Green Leaves’ restaurant rating in the office’s online facility database, and multiple searches (attempting many different takes on information in search entry fields)produced zero hits (whereas a comparison search for ‘Real Food Daily’ in Santa Monica quickly resulted in a hit for the restaurant and revealed their most recent score -94).

    There are many possible reasons why a search for Green Leaves was not successful on the county site, I suppose (site error, different operation name on business license, etc…?), but considering that Mr. Mann cited their Health Dept. ‘verification’ as ‘fact,’ I found it coincidentally curious that I could not easily access proof of this while able to do the same for many other vegan restaurants. Keeping in mind, again, that this was just to get Green Leaves health rating because the Dept. of Public Health only certifies safe food handling, not vegan-ness.

  • @Megh,

    I can shed some light here as Green Leaves Vegan is shown on the health dept. website as “Hollywood Vegan”, their original name.

    They may still use it as a dba.

    Check it out:

    Enter Hollywood Vegan, check the address and the date of the latest report.

    Mr. W

  • I love how that lawyer has an att.net email address. Quality stuff, right there. Not only does he not know how to use spell check, but he doesn’t know how to use Outlook.

    It’s pretty shitty that Green Leaves got defensive, refused to talk to you, and instead hired a slimy lawyer. Just sayin’.

  • Okay, I have been fighting the urge to leave a comment here and I just have to say something. Over the past six years of calling myself vegan, I have thought long and hard about “morality”. My reasons for choosing my diet and lifestyle are multifaceted. I consider myself a pacifist, I don’t believe animals should be killed or harmed or enslaved, I believe eating lower on the food chain can ultimately slow and even stop the spread of world hunger, I believe a vegan diet can be a healthy way to prevent many diseases, and I believe that I’m lucky enough to live in a place where a vegan diet is easy and affordable to maintain. One huge vow I made to myself years ago was that I would always remember that humans are animals too. If we call ourselves animal-loving, then we must ask ourselves, “Are synthetic shoes made by children in a sweat shop a better choice than leather shoes?” “Is it the right decision to send something back (to be thrown out and wasted) if it is delivered to my table with cheese on it?” “Should I alienate myself from a kind host by not eating what he/she has served me at his/her house?” and “Is a website largely devoted to exposing mistakes of small businesses really doing much to further any of these causes we all believe in so passionately?” These are tricky questions, and the answers are not cut and dry. To be honest, I’m scratching my head over the number of people who don’t see a problem with eating “mystery” fake meat from Taiwan with 300+ (and many of them unknown) ingredients when we live in beautiful Southern California, a land full of all kinds of fresh local fruits, vegetables, legumes, and grains. Of course fake foods are fun every now and then, but honestly, if you want to eat a contaminate-free, completely vegan diet, you really probably shouldn’t eat at restaurants. Anyone with allergies or a special diet knows there is a risk involved entrusting another cook to prepare one’s food. I appreciate that you want to clarify if restaurants are completely vegan if they claim to be. But I can assure you, this website is not going to “win anyone over” to the lifestyle we have all chosen. No one likes whiny vegans!

  • Dear Quarrygirl,
    You have our support!! This attorney is desparate and was most likely not retained by them. No one can take away your first amendment right to free speech, especially if its the truth. Take a look at this website and contact the EFF if you like:

  • @mary – this website is not “largely devoted to exposing mistakes of small businesses” – it is a resource of where to get delicious vegan food in los angeles. 90% of the posts are positive, and drive quite a lot of business TO local small businesses.

    the bottom line is – it is quite upsetting to find out a restaurant like green leaves has been betraying their clients’ trust. if someone tells you, “yes, this is 100% vegan”, they 1) should be able to back up that claim and 2) owe it to the person paying for said item to not lie to their faces. as far as the mock meats go, yeah, a lot of the restaurant owners buying them probably didn’t know they weren’t vegan, and the original article doesn’t blame them and in many cases encourages people to still go there and just stay away from questionable meats. people are obviously not reading the entire article all the way through. in the case of green leaves, though, they’ve been straight up lying to people for at least the last two years. they’ve lied to my face on several occasions about their cheese.

    being vegan doesn’t mean we have to be hermits. there are restaurants that cater to us, that DO use local produce, and don’t use fake imported meats – we should support them. the bottom line is, deciding to be a vegan means we’ve made the choice to not put certain things in our body. what if you were served something at a restaurant or by a “kind host” that had a big long hair from an unknown person sticking out of it? i wouldn’t eat it, and to me that’s less disgusting than something covered in cow puss.

    this website is also FAR from what i’d call “whiny”, it is informative, factual, and often very humorous. QG and mr. meaner have not only exposed local and non-local vegans to some amazing dining options in LA and other cities, but they’ve also helped several restaurants get off the ground by usually being one of the first to review a new vegan business.

  • i see mary is another one of those strivegans. you’ll never make a difference. go eat your green leaves and when they tell you it’s ‘vegan’ you can feel good about yourself.

  • i’ve fallen sick at green leaves many times and the tests don’t lie. i will never eat here again. that lawyer seems full of crap and he’s just trying to scare this website out of posting factual and helpful information.

  • Mr. Wishbone: Thank you. That did produce a test result for their address from 14 April of this year. Score 91 (6 violations, non considered high-risk), which, unfortunately, still does not provide any information regarding their adherence to vegan standards. Though, as of April, they have a grade ‘A’ as far as the DPH is concerned.

  • Brittany,
    If I was at somebodies home, and the kind host served me food with a hair in it, I would discreetly remove in and continue eating. Obviously it was a mistake. At a restaurant? I would do the same (as I don’t like to waste food), and possibly be not as jazzed to return. That’s just me.

    As far as I know, no culture in the world eats “Cow Puss”.

    But then again, blog comments are just about the last way I feel like spending my afternoon.

  • Scott-
    Keep on changing the world through blog comments! Angry vegan equals non-effective in my book.

  • Rob: if you want to eat hair and cow puss, go ahead. Why are you even reading this blog? Last I checked, this was a place for vegans who don’t eat animal products. Good riddance.

  • I think it is entirely appropriate to hold vegan restaurants to high standards with regard to ingredients.

    I think they should also hold non-vegan restaurants to equally high standards with regard to cross-contamination.

    Let the testing begin!

    Or will it not take place because everyone knows that they will find they are exposed to at least as much – if not more – animal ingredients as they would be at Green Leaves?

  • @Scott: i see mary is another one of those strivegans. you’ll never make a difference

    I’m not sure what a “strivegan” is, but in terms of preventing animal suffering, someone who’s 98% vegan is a lot better than someone who’s not.

    It is *literally* impossible to eat a diet which completely avoids killing animals, especially if you ever leave your house. There are animals dying in the paths of the trucks and planes that deliver that food, whether it’s fake meat from overseas, trucks from Ventura county, or your Prius driving home from Whole Paycheck. There are animals killed by the kindest and most organic of agricultural practices, as well as by big agribusiness. Mistakes happen.

    All those of us who are vegan or eat a largely vegan diet can do is try our best, and choose where we want to draw the line. *Everyone* has to draw the line somewhere, and there are a lot of complicated ethical choices, as Mary alludes to. I don’t think it’s productive to accuse people who aren’t as “hardcore” as you… even spending your time convincing someone who eats meat or dairy to very slightly reduce their consumption of these foods would probably have a better net result in terms of preventing animal cruelty.

    All that said, I do think it’s clear that some of these restaurants are straight up lying, and I don’t think it’s unreasonable to expect that a restaurant which has “vegan” in its name, and represents itself as vegan to do it’s very best to serve vegan food.

    I think you guys would be better covered from a legal perspective if you had notified the restaurants in the original post ahead of time, but what’s done is done. I think it’s probably wise to call their bluff and ignore this letter, but keep in mind that a legal battle would definitely be expensive and unpleasant all around. If it comes to it, drop me a line – my friend may be able to recommend an attorney who would be interested in representing you pro bono.

  • Beth-
    OMG… Keep patting yourselves on the back. You are Vegan! Good work! I am a strict vegan for 19 years. And yes…I don’t WANT to eat a hair… it just happens sometimes. Do you know how many bugs crawl into your mouth when you you sleep? Or into your food at bulk bins? Have you ever been camping, or traveled outside the comforts and the bubbles of your nice clean USA? (I am being sarcastic, as the USA is a filthy place.) The world is not perfect and sanitary. Nobody is defending green leaves. It is dishonest. My point was like, yeah, duh, processed food traveling around the world in a container ship is less than a perfect scenario. Avoid it and you will be probably closer to this whole “pure” state that you believe you are.

    ANd yes… I do not want to post comments anymore along side a bunch of people who seem to feel they have attained moral superiority and there fore can criticize other vegans who maybe just feel that they still have other things in the world to think about.
    So good bye!
    Enjoy alienating the rest of the world.

  • All you people (rob, Beth, will, Scott) need to shut up and realize this isn’t about how vegan you are. This is about a restaurant in our community who has been blatantly lying to us about their ingredients. They have intentionally been selling us nonvegan food! That is unforgiveable, and I am glad quarrygirl.com (a usually very positive blog) brought to our attention what we have suspected for so long.

    It makes me sick that rather apologize or
    offer an explanation, green leaves hired a lawyer who can’t even compose an email to sue a vegan blog….a blog that provides a valuable service to this community.

    Green leaves should be on trial. The rest of your arguments are just noise.

  • Hi Rob.

    You posted that as far as you know, no culture in the world eats cow pus … but alas one of the greatest cow-pus-consuming countries in the world is the good old USA where industrial dairies and milk-production enhancing hormones substantially increase the incidence of udder infection.

    A Google search of “pus dairy” or “pus milk” will bring up an abundance of sites. Here’s a good example:

    Rent “The Corporation” from Netflix. It’s an eye-opener.

  • Haha…vegan certification by the LA Health Board.

    This lawyer and restaurant are both fucking jokes.

    Thank you, quarry grrl.

  • Is Green Leaves the only restaurant to seek legal action after your OP findings? I saw some responses around here from other owners but most seemed unaware of what was going on with their food and promised to change things. So it’s pretty sad that instead of doing the same, Green Leaves just wants to be antagonistic. But I guess it’s a tough economy and they don’t know what else to do. Like those lunatics that want to rewrite birth certificate standards in California. I guess their next step is to go after anyone on Yelp that gave them 1 star. Lunatics.

  • @Will.U.R I get those “what about the bugs you kill with your car” comments from douchebags that aren’t vegan. i don’t need them from some longwinded vegan too.

  • @rob – someone else has already pointed out the cow puss comment, so i don’t need to address it further. and if blog comments are the last way you want to spend your afternoon, then stop posting. you can achieve your goals!

    @rory – well said! i swear, some people just like to start arguments on the internet because they have nothing better to do.

  • HA!! That’ll teach Green Leaves Vegan to not put Casein and Egg in their food! Way to go Quarrygirl!! 🙂

  • Interesting that this restaurant hires a lawyer who was suspended for two years for misconduct…

  • I agree that this letter would have to be sent through the mail in order to have any real bite. And yes, whomever sent that email needs to seriously brush up on how to use spell check.
    I don’t believe that if Mr. Mann is indeed the legal counsel of Green Leaves then his suspension has any bearing. He’s not suspended now, and while I wouldn’t hire someone who had been suspended, maybe he’s less expensive, or maybe they just didn’t look into it.

    I am a lurker on this blog, and don’t even live in CA. I’m way over here in New York, and I deeply appreciate how this blog strives to open people’s eyes– not just in relation to which “vegan” places are serving non-vegan food, but the also about all of the dining opportunities out there for people who choose to eat vegan. It gives me ideas for what I can make. It’s great food porn 🙂

    So I love this blog.

    Sometimes, though, the comments bother me. I’m passionate about being a vegan, but I understand that people have taken different paths to get to their veganism, and have different thoughts about how it can better affect the world. It’s disheartening to see readers spitefully commenting back and forth. I feel that as vegans, we may all have different reasons, but we are all striving for a common goal.

  • LOL!! nice try green leaves, you’ve alienated your entire market, just count your losses and move on. the more lying you do, the less chance you’re going to have to save face with even your non-vegan customers. and spell check your lawyer’s work next time 😉

    btw, around the corner from GL is an awesome VEGAN pizza place called cruisers. so if you’re in that area you can still get vegan food. they have delicious VEGAN CHEESE (DAIYA) pizza, they even have a vegan meat pizza. prices aren’t bad either. they also have a bunch of otehr daiya food, like lasagna…

  • Boycott Green Leaves


    CALL green thieves and tell them how you really feel. Preferably during busy business hours (lunch or dinner time) and block your phone number.

    Green Thieves: (323) 664-2345

  • This is my final visit here!!!!

    You are a bunch of disgusting people that sit all day and make false accusations
    And spread hatred and make fun of people under the disguise of “truth seekers”. You never respond respectfully to anyone who doesn’t share your opinion or try to show the whole picture.
    Anyway it’s obvious you are writing between yourselves and to yourselves only. So I’ll leave you to it!!!! Enjoy your miserable life. And for anyone who comes across this blog, just so you know there are nice vegan people!!!

  • bfh bfh bfh…keep it moving.

  • na na na naaaa
    hey hey
    good bye

  • We barely knew her.

  • @foodeater i just sprayed water all over my keyboard and screen. bahahahaha!

  • Hilarious…If the letter wasn’t funny enough, everyone’s comments are outstanding!!! Green leaves should know that uuhh vegans are educated. Nice try though. Maybe the city of LA should verify Mann’s lawyerness because I believe his ‘true’ degree must contain casein too.

  • Dear Nina Bell,

  • Typical dip shit attorney charged $150 probably to write this crap email. I’d love to hear his definition of a vegan diet! If Green Leaves wanted to convince me they’ve gone legit they’d have found a vegan attorney and hired a vegan PR firm to clean up their mess. This guy just further confirms to me (aka my opinion) that Green Leaves are horrible people who aren’t interested in the vegan diet or community, just ripping off and poisoning (giving people w/food allergies contaminated food) people. Maybe they just aren’t smart enough to really understand what a vegan is in the first place? If the above attorney wants advice on how to help his clients (and bill them more $ and save them from a nasty food allergy law suit/death) feel free to email me and I can put you in touch with the Vegan Society’s certification program.

  • Um, how come this lawyer can’t spell or use correct punctuation and grammar? It’s hard for me to take his letter seriously.

  • I just have to comment again that the email from Jeff Mann ESQ is one of the funniest emails I have ever read. He sends an email rather than a “cease and desist” letter. As others have pointed out, it contains numerous misspellings and was intended to shut the “gripe” blog down. Please read this following article regarding these “gripe sites”

    It states that “If a cease and desist letter is sentout, it should be written with theexpectation that it will be posted”.

    I just LOVE your blog and hope it continues!!

  • boy, green leaves sure got really defensive, huh. but you guys are right, they should just apologize and correct their mistakes, maybe even buy a few of those test kits so they can do their own testing… them hiring mr. shyster, esq. was just a big turn off, will definitely never go back there again.

    btw, vegan pizza from cruzer in glendale — heaven!

  • Steamin Vegan

    Places like this piss me off! It doesn’t matter whether Green Thieves was deliberate, aware or ignorant. As a business they are 100% liable. Nobody else is responsible to check their vendors and employees for veganess, but them and them alone. Whether they knew or not they committed fraud, which is criminal, and they should be criminally punished. And where’s the cease and desist letters & lawsuits from the vegans telling these places to shut down, clean up, or pay out big time for stealing our money all these years!!! This place should just go away. I’d rather have no vegan restaurants then ones like these! And that goes for places that label dishes “vegan” when they aren’t, those places need to go to. Their all a bunch of vegan-washing liars!!!

  • certainly a vegan lawyer has eaten non-vegan food there. time for them to start writing letters too, threatening to sue for fraud (or something).

    oh, look, that’s exactly what the previous post is saying! 🙂

  • FYI: Lionel Hutz would surely take this case pro bono.

    My days of reading Sarte & eating pancakes at Green Leaves are officially over.

  • Thanks! As a vegan who is allergic to dairy, I finally gave up on eating fake meats and fake cheese when dining out after too many bad experiences. Even if the restaurant claims to be vegan, I would still get sick sometimes. With blogs like yours, HOPEFULLY the restaurants will become more trustworthy. Thank you for keeping them accountable. And don’t stop.

    Regarding that letter from the lawyer: The first one is always about trying to scare you off. Don’t buy it. Stand strong.

  • To come back like this means must have known they knew they were wrong, and panicked. Or maybe they weren’t strict enough with suppliers. Either way, it IS down to the restaurant to ensure it complies. However, my understanding is that both in UK and USA there is no legal definition of “vegan”. It’s essentially a “made-up word” – there-in lies the problem – and the solution. Hope I didn’t miss someone else saying that in the numerous responses here. Surely that says enough about why vendors need to do their bit? We are a relatively money rich sector!! Let us spend with confidence!

  • I’m with Krissy. Retract the retraction. We’ll set up a legal defense fund if necessary. Let their “lawyer” come after you and tell him to bring the illiterate flunky who writes his correspondence with him.

    By the way:

  • Hi Saul
    There is now a legal definition of both vegetarian and vegan for the food and catering industries in the UK – http://www.food.gov.uk/news/newsarchive/2006/apr/vegvegan

  • This is merely a poor and slimy scare tactic. There was no false or malicious information provided by your website, and Jeff Mann is not the law. You’ve no reason to retract any part of your earlier findings/statements.

    Trust but verify. Good philosophy.

  • I read Krissy’s comment and had to make one of my own. She said exactly what they drilled it into us in law school.

    Also, I thought that if you’re just expressing your opinion, that you’re safe from a defamation action. Here, Quarrygirl did a bunch of tests on her own and came to form the opinion that there were some restaurants that had casein and egg in their products. Of course, they also drill into us that sometimes a statement can be seen as both a statement of fact and a statement of opinion, depending on the viewer.

    Also, if that isn’t enough, I would think that the “fair comment on a matter of public interest” defense would also apply here. Here Quarrygirl clearly made this piece in the interest of letting all of us vegans know that what we’re eating is not necessarily what we think it is. I don’t understand why the defense doesn’t apply here.

    Look I’m a newly minted lawyer, so don’t listen to me, but this is the sort of stuff they drill into you in law school.

  • One last thing, I thought that if you were talking about a public figure that it’s damn near impossible to prove defamation because the standard is much higher, you have to prove actual malice (that Quarrygirl knew her statement was false or made it in reckless disregard of the truth).

    I wonder if Quarrygirl could argue that Green Leaves Vegan is a public figure, because the definition of a public figure is so broad, and GLV advertises to us vegans and such.

    Just some thoughts, and NOT legal advice so don’t act on it and then sue me.

  • One last thing, I don’t know if all those defenses are avail in CA, I am just trying to recall my Con law notes. Don’t sue me.

  • If quarrygirl truly wants to put this issue in the past, DROP THE ARTICLE.

    I eat often at Green Leaves West Hollywood, and I find their food delicious and their service excellent. NO ONE REALLY KNOWS OR HAS PROVED if they “lied” about their faux meat or not. In fact, this goes for virtually EVERY vegan eatery in town. No one has presented irrefutable evidence. I suggest that the matter be dropped before GL gets a better lawyer and starts real trouble for quarrygirl.

    The only way you can really trust vegan food is to grow it and eat it yourself. CHILL OUT, PEOPLE!

  • @archiesboy: what made you change your mind? http://forums.quarrygirl.com/download/file.php?id=151&mode=view

  • PS: Green Leaves has been rated #6 out of the top 10 vegan places around: http://www.urbanspoon.com/t/5/2/LA/Vegan-friendly-restaurants

  • @miss anthrope: Thinking about all the angles. A neutral third party is needed to test the veracity not only of *your* tests, but to test ALL vegan restaurants. And from what I can understand, the restaurants themselves were fooled by their suppliers who, in some cases didn’t know that the products they were selling to restaurants were tainted with animal products. So this goes clear back to Asia, in some instances, and becomes an impossible situation.

    So I say: Let all vegan restaurants form some sort of guild and hire a testing service which has been thoroughly checked for integrity, and let all the restuarants open themselves up for testing. Probably impossibly expensive.

    There has to be a certain amount of customer trust in the vegan eatery business, and the constant danger is that that trust can always be broken. Kudos to you for trying to do something about it, but it almost blew up in your face.

    I still trust you for your integrity in trying to deal with truly vegan eateries. We’re building up a list of favorites because we trust your judgment. In situations like these, trust is all we have. 🙂

  • Quote: “@archiesboy: what made you change your mind?”

    I bet he got a letter from the shitty lawyer. LOL…

    I don’t trust this restaurant. Read all the comments from customers on Google Reviews:


    Out of 16 reviews, 6 of them were customers claiming the food is not vegan.

    I want to thank Mr. Meaner for testing the vegan restaurants for non vegan ingredients. That’s really cool. If no one patrolled restaurants like this, then they could get away with putting anything in our food. This kind of testing will keep them on their feet.

  • What exactly are the requirements to qualify a restaurant as vegan? I’m not sure how clear they are if a restaurant like this can squeeze through the cracks. HOpefully though, they are truthful and are not lying to their customers..

  • To the casual outside observer, “operation pancake” reads like a psychopathic witch hunt for commies or star bellied sneetches. I don’t eat meat but would never allow myself to be labeled “vegan”, simply because it denotes such ridiculousness. I’m not suprised by the restaurant’s reaction, escpecially given the confrontational attitude of the purveyors of this “operation”. the editor and the cheerleaders of this endeavor have a little too much free time on their hands, and a complete lack of perspective on the things in life that matter.
    gotta remember to go to green leaves when i’m back in l.a……

  • Response to Abe: To someone with food allergies, this “operation” did matter. I need to know when I am being lied to if my health and well-being is on the line.
    Thank you to those who care enough and spent their hard earned money on something they cared about. Caring shows character!

  • I’ll never eat there now…thanks Quarry girl

  • It really is the pits when a restaurant claims to be vegan and then when you test their food they turn out to be not so vegan.. It was scary to think that I was eating something I have vowed not to.. Makes me want to only cook my own food so I know where it came from! Go get ’em!

    Antique Jewelry

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