On a recent family vacation to Florida, Greg and I snuck away on a rainy afternoon to explore Cocoa Village and visit a great little vegan restaurant, Paisley Vegan Kitchen. If you want to experience vegan food in Cocoa, keep reading for more about this exceptional vegan restaurant!
It was easy to find and we were able to park right in front, which was serendipitous because it was raining in ernest when we arrived. We were at the tail end of the week day lunch period so we were seated immediately and were able to meet Alyssa, the owner and creator.
Originally, we agreed to try food that we don’t have a version of on this blog. But there were nachos. Actually, “Piled High Nachos” according to the menu. We decided to experiment with new dishes after the nachos.
Apps, Because We Had To
The “Piled High Nachos” was a plate overflowing with chips, cheese sauce, salsa, guacamole, tomatoes, and jalapeños. The menu described it as a “mountain of fresh tortilla chips” and it’s not kidding! It could easily have accommodated 4 people as an appetizer and certainly would have been a satisfying meal on its own. These aren’t oven baked nachos, which means a spicy cheese sauce instead of melted cheese, but it was creamy and balanced the salsa really well. Overall a wonderful balance of texture and spice. I am embarrassed remembering how fast we managed to finish it off between the two of us. The presentation, as with the other dishes, was beautiful.
Let me stop and say this about that: presentation really matters to me. We live in a culture where so much is rushed; it’s the culture of fast food. As a nurse, I have inhaled my share of meals in as few minutes as possible out of necessity. When I can sit down to a meal that is thoughtfully and beautifully presented, it gives me great pleasure. I like to pause and take in the art of it. Paisley Vegan did not disappoint.
Where was I?
After the Nachos simply disappeared we settled down and started on the rest of our order. First up was sharing a half-order of an amazing Caesar Salad that was everything you could want with crisp fresh romaine, crunchy croutons, and “just right” dressing. Perfect!
Entree #1: BBQ Pulled Jackfruit
Greg ordered the BBQ Pulled Jackfruit sliders with a side of seasoned french fries. Neither of us have tried jackfruit before, and rarely go for anything BBQ. But we’ve read and seen a lot of recipes for the jackfruit version of BBQ pulled pork, so we were curious. It was delish!
His plate was two sliders overflowing with pulled jackfruit and a giant pile of fries. The slightly chewy jackfruit was covered with a tangy barbecue sauce with the perfect touch of smoke. Our server commented that they make their BBQ Jackfruit from scratch, including their own BBQ sauce. Its a Paisley Vegan Kitchen original, which is impressive because even Tofurkey now has a jackfruit pulled pork in stores. They are not cutting any corners in that kitchen!
Entree #2: Crispy Chicken Sandwich
I had the Crispy Chicken Sandwich with a side of avocado slaw. The sandwich transported me back to the Good Harbor beach club, where my girlfriend and I would have chicken club sandwiches for lunch on her mother’s tab. It always felt so special and indulgent and this sandwich evoked the same thoughts and sweet memories. The seitan “chicken” was crispy on the outside and moist on the inside, so the flavor and texture would satisfy even the most resistant meat eater. To top it all off, it was wrapped up in a to die for ciabatta roll. The crisp, sweet, and tangy avocado slaw was the perfect compliment.
Dessert, To Be Thorough
We were completely stuffed after our sandwiches. But there was cheesecake. With chocolate cookie crust. We decided to take that to-go so that we could give it the attention it deserved, but we should have ordered 2 pieces. The coconut cheesecake texture was dense and creamy without being heavy, and the flavor was excellent. I think the dessert selection changes daily so we were there on a very good day.
“Must Try” Vegan Food in Cocoa
Paisley Vegan Kitchen in Cocoa is a sweet find. For a relatively small space, there is a good amount of seating, so you feel welcomed and comfortable. Sitting in the restaurant, you are aware that every detail is intentional.
The menu offers a variety of options and I am confident that anyone, vegan or not, would enjoy eating there. If you are in the area (or even close-by) make plans to get some fantastic vegan food in Cocoa with a visit to Paisley Vegan Kitchen – you will not be disappointed.
Getting To Paisley Vegan Kitchen
Paisley Vegan Kitchen is at 630 Brevard Ave, Suite A FL 32922