Freaks + Leeks Pop-Up to Debut at Platform Brewery March 5
by Christina Best
Determined to make vegan food more accessible to the Columbus community, Amina Cochran and Aaron Cottrell created Freaks + Leeks, a vegan brunch pop-up that will be available Sundays at Platform Brewery from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Though she went to The Ohio State University for creative writing, Amina developed an interest in food and our relationship with it while working at one of the school’s pastry kitchens. She was also involved with women’s studies, which she says helped her develop a positive relationship with food. “Food nourishes us,” she says, “and it’s hard to deal with other roadblocks when you don’t have a good diet.”
Amina has been playing with the idea of serving food to the public for years because of a desire to promote body and food positivity. Additionally, “there’s a lot of garbage out there. I just want people to eat good food.” She recently decided to execute her idea after hearing that Platform was looking to fill pop-up shop timeslots.
Tofu and chickpea frittata with a crispy hash brown crust and house made vegan feta.
Combining her love of locally-sourced, clean food, Amina has been involved with Local Matters, a Columbus-based organization whose mission is “to create healthy communities through food education, access and advocacy.” Through Local Matters, Amina has had the opportunity to teach several classes in underserved areas in the community.
On February 26, I sampled some items from the Freaks + Leeks menu at Spacebar. Though I tried every item, I most enjoyed the crispy wrapped dates, veggie frittata with crispy hash brown crust, the tofu scramble, and the house aubergine with quinoa salad. Overall, the items were very flavorful and perfectly spiced. I believe that Amina and Aaron have achieved exactly what they set out to accomplish—to make vegan food accessible. With Freaks + Leeks, it didn’t feel like I was eating vegan food. It felt, instead, like I was enjoying a homemade meal prepared by a close friend.