Vegan Mexican Restaurant Owner Not Helping Stereotype of Vegans

Tediberto's Facebook page complaining about our coverage.

Gee, sounds like somebody needs a cheeseburger.

From time to time here at Chow Bella, we write something we know might make people angry. But once in a while, a post we thought was totally innocuous sets someone off. This is one of those times. When we announced that Tediberto's -- an indie, vegan Mexican restaurant -- was coming to Roosevelt Row, we had no intention of starting a shit show.


Here is the entire post we ran, announcing Tediberto's (alleged) impending arrival:

​"There's a lot of 'berto's' in Mexican restaurant names, and teddy bears are disarming," says Yin Macatabas on how she arrived at the name for her first eatery. "Plus, vegans don't eat animals."

Called Tediberto's, Macatabas' restaurant will focus on vegan Mexican food, something she says is difficult to find in the Valley.

"A lot of beans are made with lard, and sometimes chicken broth is used to make the rice," Macatabas explains. "It's difficult to find vegetarian food in downtown Phoenix, let alone vegan."

Macatabas, an ex-Californian who's been in the Valley for ten years, says that Mexican food is her favorite cuisine. Vegan tacos, burritos, and a spicy Mexican slaw are planned for the menu as well as a brunch. Prices will be between $10 and $30 dollars.

Tediberto's is located at 110 East Roosevelt Street (Roosevelt and First Street) in the former Fresh Gourmet space. Macatabas says she hopes to open soon.

Stay tuned for details.

Pretty run-of-the-mill, right? We didn't even make fun of Mexican food without real cheese (tempting, but we resisted).

Now check out Tediberto's Facebook post -- left just yesterday, even though our post was dated March 26 -- and you might think we really handed it to Macatabas:

Location Info

Tediberto's - CLOSED

110 E. Roosevelt St., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant

Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help

NotaNTemployee: You might as well work for NT. You are getting your facts as wrong as they do. There are not even 20 employees and you comment is dumb! No matter how smart you try to make yourself sound. It is really just starting to seem like people want to jump on the opportunity to make fun of something that is different and therefor scares them. The article/comment that were made about Tedi's was not only false but rude. There is no denying that (especially if you know the whole story). If you don't like Vegan, that's okay. No need to make fun of people and throw ignorant low blows about a collection of people because you don't agree with their life choices. I think the previous comment said it best, when someone said, "Grow up!". 


Yep, it's true.  Tina and Amy joined forces on a downtown vegan Mexican concept that has 20 employees with internet access, but will never open.  Instead of cooking, they plan to work on polishing their image by claiming non-existent discrimination through social media outlets indefinitely.


Actually, the statement that Vegans don't eat animals is incorrect.  Vegans that eat grain will be eating bugs as well.  Especially in Organic grains, bugs are present in small amounts.  Bugs are animals too.  Plus there are philosophical type vegans and economic ones and then there are the healthy living ones.  All are particularly pleasing and helpful to all - however, the philosophical ones can be on the touchy side and enjoy a lot of drama because the food can be a little drab if one does not know how to cook well.  Vegans especially DO NOT LIKE TO BE TEASED.  Tease a philosophical Vegan at your own risk.  You don't want to go there Girl!!!

BTW - eating a Vegan diet is the most healthful, economic and interesting way to living your life. Plus, your kids will think you're cool.


I'm a big fan of New Times in general. Great publication that has a history of breaking very important local news here in Arizona, however, I'm very disappointed in New Times for their disparaging remarks towards vegans and this unprofessional "response" to a Facebook status update.  Should the owner be happy to be getting media coverage? Of course. Could they get upset over inaccuracies? Of course. Amy Silverman, I find your attitude & comments towards vegans insulting.

Some Guy
Some Guy

Sounds like everyone needs to just move on and have some Vegan Tacos.


All we can figure out here (in downtown Phoenix), quite frankly, is that the adage about Weekly newspapers being a bit, um, unprofessional, is holding true. There were better ways to resolve this dispute rather that continuing to heap bad publicity on a spot that hasn't even opened yet. I'm happy to have more options, especially vegetarian options, in my neighborhood. 


Oh my. This is completely uncalled for. Sounds like all the owner was trying to do was to clear up any concerns her Facebook followers might have. To respond with what is nothing short of immature, offensive and trollish is completely out of line and not what I would have ever expected to read on Chow Bella.

And the offensive jabs..."Sounds like somebody needs a cheeseburger"? Really? For some vegans, eating is part of a strongly held belief structure. You wouldn't tell a Jew "Sounds like you need some bacon" or a Hindu "Looks like you could use a Cheesesteak", would you? I don't like to compare veganism to religion, but I couldn't think of anything more appropriate.

I always considered New Times a progressive publication, but this just sounds too much like you backwards-ass drunk uncle around the holidays chuckling "Hyuk, hyuk! Go suck a salad you hippie. Hyuk, hyuk!". I hear enough of that as it is, I shouldn't have to read about it.

I hope in the future you think twice about making offensive blanket statements about an entire group of people.


in my opinion this is a very rude article. What a great way of attacking someone and a collective at the same time...
I think this lady needs to learn how to be a little bit more professional

Indigo Young
Indigo Young

You could have just apologized for not seeking permission before publishing the interview! This response is mean and immature. I'm embarrassed for the New Times.



Before I begin with any sort of defense, let’s start by
making mention of the overtly attacking internet article that Amy Silverman,
Chow Bella editor, posted yesterday in response to our poorly written Facebook
rant re: their (Chow Bella’s) poorly written article.


Let me pause here and remind anyone reading that this harsh retaliation, which
speaks so scornfully, was all prompted from one little Facebook post. Yes, I
repeat: a Facebook post.. I believe that if anyone owes anyone else an apology
here, the apology needs to be made to Vegans. Ms. Silverman speaks in a very
derogatory manner against Vegans. I understand, although I find it
unreasonable, that someone has taken things quite personally and wants to
attack me and Tedi personally- to the extent of what seems to be a vendetta;
but what I can’t understand is how the author of this article failed to see
that her words aimed at me and the biz’ actually hit an entire group of people.
The language used speaks derisively about Vegans. “Vegan Mexican Restaurant Owner Not Helping
Stereotype of Vegans.” “Gee, sounds like somebody needs a cheeseburger.”
“We didn't even make fun of Mexican food without real cheese (tempting, but we
resisted).” “…maybe that restaurant is never really going to happen and someone
has a little egg soybean paste on her face.” Clearly, if we were to use
these sorts of tongue-in-cheek stabs at any other group of people, we would
find it tasteless and offensive toward that group; why would it be any
different for vegans? Let’s review that title again: Vegan Mexican
Restaurant Owner Not Helping Stereotype of Vegans. …?  I’m shocked at the attempt of putting someone down blatantly
using talk of stereotypes. What year is it? Because I thought we were in 2012
and, of all entities, an alternative press should be setting a better example
and not speak in such a classless manner.

Now, I would like to point out that I believe the part of the Facebook rant
that stated “in regards to the … idea of us being a high-end, upscale
restaurant” was a response to an over-exaggeration of some complaints
made regarding the perception of the pricing of Tediberto’s on the Chow Bella
New Times thread featured under the article by Laura Hahnefeld; in no way did
anyone here at Tediberto’s claim that you had mentioned it in your post.  So, to me, it seems that hasty
assumptions tend to be a part of the nature of Internet responses that no user
is necessarily immune to.  And
while reading Silverman’s article, I can count more than one wrongful
postulation- but they’re the journalists … not us.
In response to the  “$10-30/plate… we have no idea where they pulled that number from.” I do
see this was a careless mistake; again, there were responses to the article
that were being blown out of proportion circulating on different threads of the
internet (this, we’ve all learned, has become expected in our social forums).
Also, to be honest, no one here at Tedi’s has even figured out how to use our
new page since they forced us into Timeline many moons ago… we’ve been too busy
working hard to get this restaurant open for the public (which, as Ms.
Silverman pointed out, may never open, so us little “indie” kids are working
really hard for The Bear. :D) and haven’t had much time to tend to the Facebook
page. We aren’t on top of what it says or how to change anything it does say. That
layout is confusing and I don’t go anywhere near it! Does that make me, as a
business owner, a bit dense? Maybe. But, hey - I’m not here because I’m smarter
than anyone else. I just really love things like food and peace and beauty and
I’d like to find a way to share those things with people.  

Another thing I’d like to air out is that all comebacks the peeps over at the
New Times have made against us fail to mention what brought us to the point of
needing to blow off some steam on Facebook. Despite the error made on our part,
the New Times article misrepresented Tediberto’s and my words, and when we
sought to rectify this situation peacefully we were disregarded by New Times.
Someone from Tedi B’s called Laura Hahnefeld, author of the first article
presenting Tediberto’s on Chow Bella, twice and left very polite messages requesting
that the article be taken down or that we work together to rectify the areas
that we here at Tedi B’s felt were distorted. Even if Chow Bella had no
intention of cooperating with us, I believe the professional thing to have done
would be to have simply called back and kindly state that they had no interest
in working with us on the subject. Is that too much to expect? Instead we were
left ignored. This left us with a bad taste in our mouth and bad tastes breed Facebook
rants… do they not?  Editor, Amy
Silverman, only decided to finally give said Tedi B’s employee a call back
after she saw the little rant (that seems to have has conjured up so much
anger) and had no interest to talk anything out, but rather just wanted to bark
at him for a little while, and make him aware of the nasty article that she
posted in revenge. At the end, when he was finally able to get an ample amount
of words out, he stated he would discuss this with me, but Amy was sure to
drive the point home that she had no interest of discussing this issue any
further (let’s hope she keeps her word on that c:).  

Ms. Silverman boasts that there’s nothing wrong with getting the info used in
the article off of Facebook. And sure, I’ll buy that, up to an extent. Maybe
it’s just me, but I kind of think it’s like doing your homework off of
Wikipedia (up until Timeline, anyone, even a person without access to
administrative control, could go in and edit the page). More importantly, I
feel, given that the restaurant hasn’t even opened yet and, as one commenter
already mentioned, a menu hasn’t been officially announced, wouldn’t it have
only been proper to state that the info was merely rendered off of the Facebook
page? Especially after throwing quotes out as if they had spoken to me recently,
when Hahnefeld
and I haven’t spoken since back in January. And never did I, nor did anyone
else working for Tediberto’s, say that her quotes were “inflammatory,” as the
article by Silverman might suggest. We simply thought they were misrepresenting
my words.

But as pointed out by Ms. Silverman: that’s journalism. And ain’t that the
truth. I made the big mistake of allowing myself and my employees to handle
what should be dealt with by a professional PR representative. Maybe one day
we’ll be able to afford one, that way we don’t have to deal with bullying
journalists. We’d prefer to hang with a nicer crowd. After all, we here at Tedi
B’s may be fools with “soybean paste” on our face, and perhaps I’m the biggest
one of all, but we’d rather be fools than be foolishly mean-spirited. J  

I’ll have to thank Ms. Silverman, however, for discussing
our “(alleged) impending arrival.” I’m assuming she thought the effort would
hurt my feelings, but I actually like it because I think it adds suspense . We won’t
be giving out any dates quite yet. But I can, without a doubt tell you that we
are closer than we ever were. ;) Haha! Please, be patient, friends. There
aren’t many of us here and Tedi is poor, so everything we’ve put into this has been
our own blood and sweat. Sorry, everyone, that it has taken so long. If we do
ever open, we’ll try to make it up to you.  >^_^<

Kenny Powers
Kenny Powers

Jesus Christ, calm the fuck down. We are talking about shitty flavorless food here, not life and death. Don't invest too much worry into this, your hacky business will be closed in a few months, maybe the third time will be the charm.

I see Amy from Amy's Baking Company is your PR adviser, well done dummy.

Jeff Moriarty
Jeff Moriarty

Wow, what a ridiculously long rant over a very silly topic. I can't help but think someone so clueless about dealing with the press and social media would be just as clueless about dealing with customers. Or the food they'll be making.

I was curious about Tediberto's from the first post I read, but after this I think I'll steer far clear of it and let people know that Tediberto's may not serve meat, but they do serve up a big helping of Crazy.


The thing about vegans is that most of them have absolutely no sense of humor about themselves. And Silverman was not bullying you. Stop being so sensitive and realize that you got your restaurant mentioned in any way shape, or form in ANY publication. That story was not insulting to you, I read it when it first came out and am STILL puzzled by your hissy fit.  Wait until someone actually reviews your restaurant to get all upset about it. Hopefully, it will be good, but in the meantime, you need to thank Amy and New Times for telling people that you were there at all. You wanted to get pissed about something so you did. Now back off and say you're sorry.

Social Media Suicide
Social Media Suicide

"Does that make me, as a business owner, a bit dense?"
No. Rising to this provocation does. You should really click through and learn a lesson from Tina's Ethiopian. 


 Vegans have a sense of humor. We're actually real people that go out, crack jokes and enjoy having a good time. And just like real people we don't like it when people poke fun at us for being different or make false blanket statements about us.

Mezza Luna
Mezza Luna

Wow... I'm going to guess that you are both from Chow Bella since you're demanding apologies and in the know of some "lesson from Tina's Ethopian." You writers at the New Times are really unprofessional and I can't believe how obviously insane you are. "Now back off and say you're sorry."  WTH????! How old are the two of you? Grow up. And what is this lesson from Tina we should all know about? Is this a threat of some sort? Sounds like someone needs medications.

Now Trending

From the Vault