Well-known food critic Keith Lee is a viral sensation on TikTok and has been seen trying various cuisines from all over the globe. However, there is one notable food that he is not especially fond of or knowledgeable about — Haitian food.

Always seeking to diversify his palate, he was propelled to visit Mr. Vert’s Kitchen, a Haitian food truck with locations in North Miami Beach and Pompano Beach. While Lee was simply looking to see if he could change his mind about the cuisine, the owner of Mr. Vert’s Kitchen, Serge Lafontant, could never have expected this one simple visit to possibly change the course of his business.

Lee took to his popular TikTok account on Thursday, May 30, to share his experience eating a few dishes from the Haitian food truck for his more than 16 million followers. Perhaps surprising to Lee himself, despite having stopped at three other Miami restaurants during his food tour across the city, his highest praise was saved for Mr. Vert’s Kitchen.

Social media manager for the food truck, Netcha Estime, spoke about their delight with the review, saying “We were super shocked! We didn’t expect his visit at all!” Estime noted that “Someone sent the video to me five hours after he posted it.”

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In the video that has granted Mr. Vert’s Kitchen such notoriety, Keith ordered a chicken pate kode, which is a Haitian Patty with pikliz — a Haitian vegetable relish — chicken, onion, and bell pepper. Lee also ordered a platter of griot (fried pork meats) with fried plantains, as well as a turkey fritay (a fried dish made with turkey, fried bananas, marinades, pikliz, and additional ingredients). The viral critic also ordered a side of pikliz.

He began with the pate kode, which pleasantly surprised him and contained one whole boiled egg inside. After biting into the chicken portion of the patty, Lee regaled how juicy and well-seasoned the meat was, although he also felt like there was a lot of dough. Despite this, Lee stated that the dish was an excellent introduction to Haitian food and scored it an uncharacteristic 7.9 out of 10.

After the patty, Lee went for the fried griot, remarking that it looked much better than most other fried turkey he had ever had, although it turned out to be pork and not turkey. Pairing the fried griot with the pikliz, Lee found himself absolutely ecstatic over the combination of flavors. 

He stated, “That’s really good.” After that, he took another bite out of the fried pork. This time he paired it with a fried plantain and pikliz. That was all it took. Lee’s eyes widened, saying “8.5 out of 10. That’s the best food I’ve had today.”

In response to the viral TikTok, Mr. Vert’s Kitchen commented, “@keith_lel25 visited our Miami location I AM SHAKING!!! I truly cannot believe this! When we opened this business, we did not expect it to scale so fast, but God had other plans! And less than a year of opening our first location, we were able to open a second one, and in our third week of opening, THREE @keith_lel25 paid us a VISIT”