Fresh Mint is a crazy little restaurant in a crazy little building serving crazy delicious vegan food that satisfies even the most crazy carnivorous appetites. This establishment is not run so much like a restaurant as a home kitchen. So, let’s set your expectations right up front.
Don’t expect good service: it’s just the owner and his wife serving and cooking, and they have trouble doing both at the same time. One of you might get your entrée ten minutes before the other one does — but that’s OK, you’ll want to share each one. Think of them as courses.
Don’t expect a beautiful restaurant. The exterior (chartreuse) and interior (lavender) walls of this one-room eatery are a shade shy of psychedelic, the building dates back to sugar plantation days, and the bathroom is through the kitchen. Do expect very fresh Vietnamese food made with care. The sauces are excellent and well made, and the soy meats are cooked so perfectly that the texture fools many a meat eater. Meatless ribs? Give them a try. The accompanying gravy is scrumptious. The pho, we feel, is less successful without the viscosity provided by the traditional beef broth. If you’re a vegan, you should certainly stop in for a meal or two. If you’re not, you might want to get a break from fish and steak.
Address: 115 Baldwin Ave., Paia, North Shore
Location: Past Mana Foods on the left side.
Hours: Daily 5pm-9pm
Parking: Street Phone: 808-579-9144