Mianto is ideal for those that want to lose weight, and get healthier. The good news is that I can accomplish all of these goals by simply switching to a vegan diet.
Living in Taipei, there’s probably no better place in Asia for vegan food. Taipei is home to cheap Taiwanese-style soups to higher-end vegetarian dining and everything else in between.
As a group of us were first-timers to veganism, we searched around the web to find popular and foreign-friendly vegan restaurants to make good impressions on our first experiences. Mianto is located just around the corner from the Dongmen MRT (exit 2).
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We visited Mianto in February and instantly felt warmed by the cozy interior and glowing Christmas decorations which most of Taiwan keeps up throughout the winter.
Our immediate impressions were how authentic and friendly the place is. We even met the owner, a friendly South African expat called Michel who came over to take our order. She was enthusiastic enough to have a little chat with us about the place, the food options, and her experiences running the vegan restaurant in Taipei.
It’s not hard to see how Mianto has achieved a lot of popularity online. It’s now a go-to spot for expatriates who craved the tastes from home which are often very difficult to find without animal products in Taiwan. They use fresh, healthy ingredients, some of which are organic, making it a great place to go.
So here’s what we ordered
Mianto’s Soup of the Day ($80)
The soup of the day is an ideal appetizer as a medium-sized cup of corn soup. Since it would probably be a different soup each day of the week, it’s a shame that I can’t recommend this. Nevertheless, it’s best to simply ask the waitress what the soup of the day is.
The corn has a deep creaminess to it that massively builds your appetite for the main course. I honestly felt that I could endlessly eat this soup without ever getting full or bored of it! – Not like I’d try though…
Mushroom Pasta ($270)
Since it was one of Mianto’s best sellers, we went for the mushroom pasta dish from their Italian-style selection. We found this dish to have a deep and fresh mushroom taste and the pasta was bouncy.
The creamy sauce definitely enthused the tastes together to make this an enjoyable and popular dish on their menu. Recommended for those that prefer the safe bet of not being too adventurous, or simply miss the typical European foods back home.
Bunny Chow ($320)
We were recommended the Bunny Chow by Michel as I asked her for something a little more on the exotic side to what most expats would be used to back home. In fact, this is a traditional South African dish, and it’s another one of Mianto’s best sellers, so we thought why not!?
They actually make the bread themselves with whole wheat and flax bread, so it tasted really fresh. The curry is Indian, bursting with taste and full of spices which made for an interesting meal. It wasn’t that hot though, just a tad more than mild which went well with the carrot-shredding side dish. My mouth is pretty sensitive when it comes to spicy food, so it hit the spot without scolding my tonsils.
The dish includes a bowl of water to wash your fingers in after ripping and dipping the bread into the curry. I personally didn’t use it.
Baked Lasagna ($320)
We ordered the baked Lasagna to see if you can really tell the difference between meat and vegan-based foods. It took the longest to arrive as it needs 30 minutes to bake. I found it considerate that the staff politely notified us about the wait upon ordering it. It’s made of layers of pasta with a tomato-based soy protein and cheese sauce, then they bake it.
It’s hard to believe that there aren’t any meat products at all thanks to the strong soy protein used to supplement the beef. I was also shocked to discover how filling it was as we almost couldn’t finish it!
Soy-based Vanilla Ice Cream ($120)
Raspberry Juice ($85)
As for the dessert, we ordered the soy-based ice cream, and yes, there’s a face in it, and believe it or not, none of us actually noticed it at the time! Maybe because I was too quick to enjoy this naughty healthy treat! In fact, I actually preferred this dessert over the typical milk-based vanilla ice cream we all know and love. What’s more, I don’t think I’ve ever eaten anything as smooth as this, although it was more of a thick cream than ice, it wasn’t cold either.
I ordered a delicious raspberry juice which came free with my set meal. It was chilled and bursting with flavor, but not too sweet. As the desert was more of a soft and subtle taste, the sweet juice really complimented it.
As a really kind gesture from Michel, she offered us a complimentary set of soy-based teddy bear chocolates! So cute, right?
She told us to leave them for a few minutes to thaw by the room temperature to get the best-tasting experience.
It was such a kind gesture as it’s not something the restaurant typically sells or makes on a day-to-day basis.
These cute vegan chocolates were amazing little treats with the same type of deep taste you’d get from dark chocolate. There’s definitely a lot of special effort put into all the food at Mianto, and these chocolates were no exception!
Those raised on a steady diet of skewered pork and chicken curries may think vegan food is bland and forgettable. If you agree, then we strongly suggest you visit Mianto and be prepared to have your perceptions fully changed. ~ Ours have!
Will we go back?
We’re already planning to go back soon with a group of friends to introduce them to this restaurant.
Hours: 11:30am – 9:30pm, closed on Mondays
Phone: (02) 2321-9749
English Address: Mianto, 1F, Alley 26, Lane 123, Section 3, Ren’ai Road, Da’an District, 106, Taipei City
Chinese Address: 台北市大安區仁愛路3段123巷26弄6號, 1F
Closest MRT: Zhongxiao Fuxing Station – Exit 2 (blue line)
🗓️ Updated: September 2017 – Taipei.Expats