Chef Cola is a 28 year old vegan chef whose journey started in Cape Town where she trained to be a vegan chef in one of Africa's top vegan eat outs, PLANT.
Moving back to Zimbabwe, Chef Cola noticed a large gap in the market and also realized that most people were not that into plant-based diets where she was located. She took it on as a challenge coming up with "Dinner with Cola" monthly private dinners hosted by Cola that highlight the vegan cuisine and lifestyle. Her work is spreading the vegan movement around Zimbabwe, having fed over 100 people 100% plant based meals from all walks of life.
“DINNER with CHEF COLA” is a monthly dinner series hosted by Nicola Kagoro to showcase her culinary and hospitality skills and her specialty as a vegan chef. She launched her Chef Cola brand to sample the response in Zimbabwe to vegan and vegetarian delights and lifestyles.
During Hospitality Management studies at the International Hotel School in Cape Town South Africa, Nicola also cultivated her keen interest in wholesome vegan/vegetarian meals on a limited budget. The entrepreneur in her led to the formation of African Vegan On a Budget, a company that provides various plant based culinary projects on a budget and also makes customized branded African inspired chef wear. African Vegan On a Budget encourages more people to show interest in veganism.
African Vegan on a Budget encourages more people to show interest in the vegan lifestyle by showing them they can have nice tasty plant based meals on a budget. This runs counter to current narratives where vegan food is typically considered very pricey due to the expensive ingredients used in most dishes.
The culinary industry in Zimbabwe is characterized by significant but latent creativity and diversity. Chef Cola is slowly penetrating the industry with a unique niche market. Chef Cola has received positive feedback, not only in her house, but from the growing vegan industry.
She has just finished wrapping up filming this seasons Zimbabwean reality TV show Battle of the Chefs where she made it to the top 10 chefs in the country.
Her advice for people wanting to go vegan is: don't just jump into it for the sake that it's trendy or you want to lose weight. Veganism is more than what you eat; it is a whole lifestyle. Make sure you want to embrace the lifestyle as a whole before you commit. You can't be a vegan only on Monday.