Vegan Rugby Star Opens Plant-Based Café Near Home Stadium

Vegan rugby player Anthony Mullally recently co-founded vegan eatery Vital Café in Yorkshire, England. The café is located near Headingley Stadium—the home of Mulally’s rugby team Leeds Rhinos—and serves a Caribbean-inspired menu seven days per week with an all-you-can-eat buffet on Mondays after 6pm. The eatery’s whole foods-centric menu was created by Mullay’s business partners Laura Wilson and James Morris, who both work as professional nutritionists. “Being vegan is something I am very passionate about,” Mullally told local media outlet Yorkshire Evening Post. “And whilst there are lots of cafés and restaurants around that offer vegan dishes alongside non-vegan and vegetarian options, I am proud that our café at its core will be a vegan establishment.” Mullally adopted a vegan lifestyle in 2017 after his vegetarian diet made him “feel like a hypocrite.” When not on the field, the rugby star attends events—such as VegFestUK and The Body Shop’s Cruelty Free Leeds event—to promote the benefits of veganism for professional athletes. “People expect rugby players to be eating steak every day, but a lot of our squad are now vegetarian because we have started to have the conversation about everyone’s personal taste,” Mullally said. To attract fans, Vital Café offers Leeds Rhinos club membership ticket holders a 10-percent discount.