CLOSED: Fresh Mint

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 13 reviews )



115 Baldwin Ave (at Maui), Paia, Hawaii, USA, 96779

A simple Asian food restaurant owned by a husband and wife team. Serves authentic Vietnamese flavored cuisine that's all vegan. Extensive menu with some dishes featuring mock meats. Fresh mint salad, spring rolls, pho noodle soup, saucy main entrees and hot pots, soy fish fillet, Vietnamese "burrito" (wrap), and more. No alcohol. Note that per happycow member report the appetizer rolls portions are very small and feeds only one. Reported closed to HappyCow July 2014.

Categories: Vegan, Take-out, Asian, Vietnamese

13 Reviews

First Review by ks3

good food, small portions - Edit

My fiancee and I ate dinner here in January, 2014. The restaurant was quite busy and there was only one man (the owner?) waiting tables. He seemed a bit frazzled. It took a long time to place our order. The food was quite good, but the portions were too small for us and we were hungry again later that night.

Pros: good food, vegan

Cons: small portions, not the best ambience

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Good flavors but small portions - Edit

I had read about this place on happycow many years ago and have eaten here on 3 trips to Maui. Was just here in December 2012, and here's my Fresh Mint review updates.

This is a long time operating Asian food restaurant in the heart of Paia town, just on the main drag. There had been a change of ownership since the original owners moved to Arizona in the mid-2000s. The current owners are a Vietnamese wife and husband couple. The wife cooks while the husband or a hired help buses the tables. I think the wife may have worked here previously and decided to takeover the restaurant.

From the ownership change, the menu had only changed just slightly to include several more selections, but the decor, recipes, and flavors seemed to remain very similar. The portions, however, have been reduced.

The food is authentic Vietnamese. The decor is older, basic. Even after at least 5 years since I first visited, it felt as if not much has changed here.

I'm a fan of the pho noodle soup, and the one at Fresh mint is very good. The broth is flavorful and satisfying. I recommend adding chili for an extra kick.

The spicy lemongrass noodle soup has good flavor,too, but the noodles come tough, so ask for soft noodle.

The spicy curry eggplant entrée served with a small side of rice is tasty.

The pad thai noodles is tasty.

The prices are moderate, but the food portions are small for the price, except for the noodle soups which are fairly priced. I'm a noodle soups fan, so I will be coming back for those.

Service-wise, I've encountered both good and bad. Just tonight, for instance, only the owner/chef and her helper were there (as usual), but neither had time to come out to take our order, so we walked out--only to call our order in. Even so, the help/waitress didn't even remember to give us our receipt even upon 2 requests.

If you are looking for VEG food in Maui, I would recommend this place as one option.

PS. I would warn anyone from ordering the fried imperial rolls (fried spring rolls) and perhaps the other appetizer rolls, too. A plate costs $7 but only comes in six tiny pieces--basically 2 thin rolls each cut into 3 even smaller pieces. I was totally SHOCKED at the tiny portion at this outrageous price.

Pros: authentic flavors, varied selections, good noodle soups

Cons: poor ventilation, small portions

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Decent food - Edit

We stopped in Paia on the way back from Hana. I had found this restaurant on Happycow. It was ok, nothing to shout home about but made a change from the WholeFoods deli. We had some type of curry and rice and pad thai, the portions were reasonable I guess but we were hungry after a busy day so it didn't quite fill the gap. You should probably get 3 entrees for 2 or at least share a starter. Service was fast but then again, it was off season and the place was not very busy.

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Great tasting food and good service - Edit

My partner and I ate here twice during one week in late July 2011. The food was some of the best we had during our trip to Hawaii. I would recommend the freshly prepared summer or autumn rolls as appetisers - the accompanying sauces were delicious. Among others, we tried the soy ginger chicken and singapore noodles - everything was delivered quickly and was good value for money. Portions were of reasonable size. Service was efficient and pleasant.

Highly recommended.

Pros: Excellent food, Pleasant staff, Good value

Cons: Small space

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if you enjoy being yelled at by waiters - Edit

For some reason, he chose my wife and I on our honeymoon to freak out on. We were having a great day and were smiling, so it was not as if we were being at all confrontational. He FREAKED out on us. I wanted to leave for some pizza down the street but we had already waited for 25 minutes to order at a bussed but dirty table. Yes, he was the only server, but he schmoozed all the other tables and laughed and talked w them. He literally did not let us finish a sentence. We ordered a dish and would yell, "what else". Upon returning w water he shook his fists saying he had no time to talk. Odd though he did w others. Not like we wanted best friends or anything, just to state what we wanted without being yelled at.

The portions are small. Or more precisely, if you go next door to the HF store and buy the gardein packets they use with the sauce packets, it will be the same size for a lot less money and aggravation. We ordered some stuff that sounded like a lot of food but was one item, not enough to share, for like $5. When we went to pay at the cashier, since we had enough abuse and time waiting for the check, we were yelled at once again to sit and wait, although we saw a lot of people paying at the register.

I don't know what the heck the deal is, but I would avoid this place if you are trying to have a nice time. I was mad, and did go for pizza anyhow bc I was starving despite spending $50 on food alone. 3 entrees, an app and a drink for the Mrs. It is not "Vietnamese" either. They do have a pho and maybe something else, and they may be Vietnamese, but it is a Chinese fake meat place you find all over the country w unhealthy sauces and overcooked food, except w the angriest waiter ever. Nothing special, you won't miss out.

2 is the lowest cows can give a veg place, otherwise it would be less.

Pros: n/a

Cons: dirty, ANGRY YELLER, small plates, big $$$

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good - Edit

cute little resteraunt. Great variety. When i ordered my meal, it was too spicy so he kindly re did it for me.

Taste wise: was ok, i have had better.

Pros: fully vegetarian, good variety

Cons: small portion

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Make this your first stop! - Edit

On our first trip to Maui, after getting off the plane, we were seriously hungry. Based on the other reviews here, we decided to make the short drive to Paia and try Fresh Mint.

When we first stepped into the restaurant, we were a little worried: it was very small, very plain, and completely empty. But we sat down anyway and scanned the menu -- not a huge selection, but enough to hold our interest. Eventually a quiet young lady came out and took our order: spring rolls, veggie kebab, pho soup, pad Thai with tofu, a soy chicken curry with sweet potatoes and carrots, and an eggplant dish (the name of which escapes me at the moment).

The appetizers came first -- tasty, but extremely small servings. Then came the soup -- also tasty, and plenty of it. Finally the entrees arrived, and we were truly impressed. Absolutely delicious! I enjoyed the soy chicken curry so much, I ordered (and devoured) another plate. We also had a very pleasant experience with the owner, who came out and checked on us. When she saw our son, an embarrassingly picky eater, pulling strands of cabbage out of his pad Thai, she insisted on making him another order without the cabbage. Of course we offered to pay for both orders, but she ended up only charging us for one. And speaking of the pad Thai, my wife and I tried a few bites and agreed that it was the BEST pad Thai we'd ever had. Yep, that good.

I have to concur with other reviewers who have commented on the small portions. But overall we were thrilled with the food, and we will definitely make this unassuming little place our first stop whenever we travel to Maui.

Pros: Delicious food, Very caring owner

Cons: Small portions

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Great Vegan food - Edit

Everything or almost everything is vegan. Lots of great choices. Worth the drive from anywhere on the island

Pros: Great Food, Lots of Vegan Choices

Cons: Basic Ambiance

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Best place to eat on Maui - Edit

Great food and great value. Very friendly staff. The chef entertained my kids with magic tricks while we were waiting for our food.

Pros: Fresh ingredients, Friendly staff, Flavorful

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EAT HERE!!! - Edit

We came here 3 out of the 8 days we were on Maui March/April 2010, everything was great. The flavors in the food were all wonderful, our favorite was the yellow curry mock chicken.

Pros: price, flavor

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Fresh Mint is the BEST!!! - Edit

This is the best vegetarian/vegan restaurant I have ever visited! They have many wonderful dishes and they are prepared with fresh ingredients to make the flavors memorable. There are many different choices of appetizers and main dishes that are reasonably priced. The staff is very friendly and helpful each time I have dined at the restaurant. I count the days until my next vacation to Maui when I can visit Fresh Mint again. Please support this restaurant while in Maui.

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Absolutely Amazing! - Edit

This is one of my favorite restaurants IN THE WHOLE WORLD. My friend and I went here 3 nights in a row. Everything was so fresh and flavorful and just..perfect. The salads are huge and very interesting. The service was a little slow, but we didn't mind.

Pros: Fresh, Flavorful, Vegan

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Heaven on Earth! - Edit

Imagine being surrounded by the natural beauty that is Maui, and finding not only a vegetarian restaurant, a vegan restaurant, and not only a vegan restaurant, a totally delicious Vietnamese abundant feast! You have arrived at heaven when you enter the sweet space of "Fresh Mint". The menu offers a wide array of delectable treats. The portions are generous, the veggies fresh, the sauces delicious, and the meat-like creations totally perfect. We ordered fish in a clay pot, and steak with veggies and they were both totally delicious. The service was gracious and excellent, and the setting relaxing, lovely, and clean. We are looking forward to going back next time we are on Maui - we want to try everything on the menu. I hope after reading this review, you will want to go to "Fresh Mint" too! Fresh Mint is a gift to this world, and I am thrilled to have found it!

Pros: Delicious Food, Healthy Cuisine, Gracious Staff

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