Actor Kevin Hart’s first plant-based fast food restaurant will be operational this Thursday in Westchester. Located at 8901 S. Sepulveda Boulevard, Hart House is less than a four-minute walk from the LAX-adjacent location of In-N-Out-Burger, which is always incredibly busy. Hart broke the news last week in an exclusive interview with Eater LA that Hart House currently has two locations under construction, multiple signed leases and is set to open up to 10 Hart Houses over the next year. .
Hart is not the first celebrity – nor the last – to open a restaurant in Los Angeles. But he could be the first to open a vegan fast food restaurant. Although he’s not an entirely vegetarian — Hart openly says he takes a flexible approach that works for him, with no red meat or dairy — he’s begun to consider the plant-based way of eating a way of life. . But he also questioned accessibility for those who can’t afford to dine at most vegetarian restaurants.
“We wanted a price that didn’t turn customers away,” says Hart. “It was extremely important for us from the start to make [affordability] a huge priority.
Hart then recruited restaurateur Andy Hooper and chef Mike Salem in an effort to keep prices low and an attractive menu. Salem is the former head of culinary innovation at Burger King, where he helped launch the Impossible Whopper; he developed all the items on the Hart House menu, which he describes as “simple”.
At Hart House, burgers are available, but so is a crispy chicken sandwich with mayonnaise and pickles, which can also be dipped in chili oil to spice things up. There are also crispy chicken nuggets with dipping options like creamy ranch, barbecue and buffalo sauces. Plus, the menu features salads, fries, tots, iced teas, and lemonade, as well as an item surprisingly similar to the real thing: a milkshake made from a blend of oats and soy. .
Hooper shared that the second location will open in Hollywood, on the southwest corner of Highland Avenue and Sunset Boulevard, in a former McDonald’s. This central location will be Hart House’s flagship location and drive-thru, directly across from Hollywood High School and Chick-fil-A, and one block from Hollywood’s own In-N-Out. It’s quite a strategy given the constant traffic and famous streets, but this time a plant-based restaurant will anchor the corner lot.
Los Angeles has exploded with plant-based fast food options in recent years with the growth of restaurants like Monty’s Good Burger, Plant Power Fast Food, Veggie Grill, and Mr. Charlie’s. Although Hart House is similar to Monty’s and Plant Power, the difference is the price. Hart House sandwiches and burgers are in the $5-$7 price range.
Hart draws a parallel between his business and his career as an actor and comedian. “For me, it’s about getting customers who aren’t necessarily your target or your demographic,” says Hart. “You try to please everyone. [Hart House] is plant-based, but it’s really good. How can we get everyone to say “I want Hart House today”. It’s something I’ve been able to do in my career. I was able to travel the globe and do my job at a very high level appealing to everyone. So for Hart House, I want [it] to match my world and what I’ve done, and have the same global appeal as we grow and move forward.
Hart House will be open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.