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Minting a New Business

Side Dishes: Vegetarian resto coming to Waitsfield


When Savitri Bhagavati and Iliyan Deskov — a restaurateur and chef, respectively — decided to escape the bustle of Los Angeles County, they sought a home that was “sustainable, had more of a community life, a place with more greenery outside,” says Bhagavati. They found it in the localvore-friendly town of Waitsfield. “I saw some pictures and read an article in Vermont Life about American Flatbread, and I thought it was amazing,” Bhagavati recalls.

After arriving last September, the pair opened a teashop on Bridge Street, where they do tastings and sell loose-leaf teas and aromatherapy products. On November 2, they’ll move the biz into the building that once housed The Spotted Cow. “We’ll have a kitchen there, so we can expand the space into a tea lounge and vegetarian restaurant,” says Bhagavati.

The healthful eats at Mint will include “vegetarian, vegan and organic meals” made with lots of local ingredients. Along with daily seasonal specials, the couple will offer dishes with international flair on a menu divided by region, with plenty of Italian, Mexican and Asian goodies from which to choose. For example, “we’ll do [homemade] roasted red peppers with olive oil, balsamic vinegar and garlic on bread,” says Bhagavati. Rice bowls with tofu or tempeh and seasonal veggies will be topped with flavorful sauces: Bhagavati calls them the key to “simple but filling and flavorful … peasant-style dishes.”

You don’t have to be famished to stop in, though. Tables in the Asian-influenced, “modern but cozy” space will be available to diners and contemplative tea drinkers alike. “I want to emphasize the natural beauty and atmosphere,” says Bhagavati, who hopes Mint will be “kind of an oasis” — as cleansing and refreshing as its namesake.