Vegan Delice (pronounced “de-lease” for “deliciousness”) is a vegan bakery in the heart of Dalston. It is also London’s first vegan hot donuts stand, which specialises in cakes, donuts and cookies.
Entrepreneur and vegan Chanel Delice is the founder of the bakery. In an interview with Eastlondonlines she explained how her vegan journey began and the history behind her successful business. “About two and a half years ago, I decide to go raw vegan. I was quite overweight so I had to do something drastic to be honest.
“It was difficult because obviously I like cakes as you can see, so raw vegan was good for me. But I’m off the raw vegan stuff,” she laughs. “Because you have to taste your cakes unfortunately so you know, it’s just one of those things.”
Chanel, who lives and works primarily in East London, studied lingerie design at the London College of Fashion and graduated three years ago. With the dream of opening her own business in lingerie, she knew she needed to fund it somehow. As the baker of the house, she decided to start selling her cakes at a local mosque and with the great reception she received, she developed the business from there.
“It was an interesting thing, my niece was actually born two years ago with severe allergies so my sister begged me to make vegan cakes. The thought of a business never even slipped my mind, so I started and found that I liked it a lot and I preferred it to be honest.”
Although the name ‘Vegan Delice’ suits Chanel’s bakery very well, she would have chosen something different if not for her sister.
“My sister actually gave me the name. I would have called it something different like Coco’s cakes, inspired by the designer, Coco Chanel.” She added: “I go by a nickname Chanel Delice because my teacher at school, his last name was Delice and I really liked its association with France. Especially as in university, you have to create a brand for yourself. So my sister was like ‘Vegan Delice’ and I guess it just worked.”
Even with the word ‘vegan’ in the name, some customers still ask Chanel once in a while if certain treats are vegan friendly or not. “People like to know that something is vegan, so with it in the name, it kind of does its job.” She added: “I still get people asking me if my cakes are vegan once in a while though.”
With average food prices ranging between £2.50 and £3.50, the most popular treat at Vegan Delice is their bake rolls. With their secret egg free Frangipane recipe, which she says she cannot disclose “for security reasons”, Chanel loves that her customers enjoy the flavours of the vegan free treat. “It’s my favourite to make and very popular, everyone loves it.”
Chanel works alone but due to her big family, is able to pull them in whenever she can if the business needs a hand. “I have a big family and they are my biggest supporters. They turn up at my house and ask ‘have you got any cake?’ so they are always able to help and decide on new treats to add to the growing collection.”
Vegan Delice treats are sold on stands at various markets across East London, however Chanel has revealed that something is working in the pipelines and there is more to come. “We will be taking it to the next step and will possibly have to employ more people but I don’t want to reveal too much, just know it’s all in works.”
When asked if there will any more treats planned for 2017, Chanel replied “Of course it’s a must!”
Vegan Delice will be at Myddleton Road Market on Sunday 2 April and the first Sunday of every month.