Sarah Hinsch is an icon in Easton. A restauranteur, entrepreneur and wellness warrior, Hinsch has been a leader of Easton’s real food revolution for seven years.
As owner of Greenmouth, a juice bar and cafe specializing in whole, healing and organic foods, she believes we can better ourselves through what we eat.
Growing up in the 80s and 90s, Hinsch struggled with her weight and the effects of polycystic ovarian syndrome.
“The doctor said we will just put you on birth control and that will solve all your problems,” she said. “They didn’t ask about diet or nutrition. If they had, I would have said, ‘Yeah, I’m eating candy and ice cream for breakfast and lunch and dinner. I’m not eating any real food.’ All I wanted was to be thin and pretty like my sisters and friends.”
Her doctors told her she would never get pregnant because of her health issues. But over time, through her own dedicated research, she learned how the right nutrition can aid fertility and discovered the slow food movement.
“In England, my best friend had a butcher, a farmer, a milkman,” she said. “It all made sense. I became hungry for the truth of how we should be living. I learned that our health care is sick care, not health care.”
After changing her diet, incorporating juicing and adding healthy fats to her meals, Hinsch became pregnant. Falling in love with herself for the first time at age 34, she wanted everyone to know that food can make them feel good. “I made that into my passion project,” she said.
Greenmouth opened in 2014, serving only organic food, sourced locally whenever possible, with everything made from scratch. Word spread quickly, and people from all walks of life made the pilgrimage to Easton’s Greenmouth, often to help heal themselves, some simply for a good meal.
“What I’m doing here is immersing myself in Easton to make us so strong and healthy that we can expand,” she said. “I love the organic growth that Easton is experiencing. Who couldn’t fall in love with Easton? Art, nature and community. The initiative is here.”
Hinsch envisions a holistic healing center above Greenmouth: a healing resort retreat offering massage, acupuncture, yoga, and supervised juice cleanses. “This is my full time gig. I am completely immersed in making Greenmouth sustainable.”
In addition to Greenmouth, Hinsch is a mom to a 7-year-old girl, always working hard to balance work with mommy time.
“It’s great for my daughter to learn that work can be fun,” she said. “You don’t have to go to a job 9 to 5 and stress out about emails, calls and texts like I once did.”
For a long time, Hinsch kept a full-time corporate job, which helped to finance the cafe. Now, she is happy to devote herself full time to Greenmouth.
LVB recently sat down with Hinsch to learn a little more about the successful cafe and what makes her tick.
LVB: In an economic environment where a lot of local brick and mortar establishments come and go, what is the secret to Greenmouth’s longevity?
Hinsch: “Working my ass off. Keeping my job for as long as I did. I was told I was an absentee owner. It affected me and hurt me but I learned how to kick that to the side because I had to be an absentee owner for Greenmouth to survive in the beginning. Now we are six years in and we are still ahead of our time.”
LVB: What’s your hometown?
Hinsch: I’ve lived a lot of different places, but I would say Jersey City. My ex-husband and I found Easton because we loved camping out here. We camped a lot in nearby
Milford, Pa. We loved Easton and the three rivers. Easton seemed like a place where I could afford to open a restaurant with healing foods.
We wanted to truly know our farmers and support chemical fee farmers with our dollars in a bigger way. Many have now become my friends.
LVB: What book you are reading right now?
Hinsch: I’m reading two books. Nonviolent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg and the Bible. I come from a very religious family. My dad is a pastor. My ex-husband’s father is a pastor. I’ve been shunning religion for a long time, but now, on my spiritual journey, I’m learning to embrace it. I do not appreciate all the negativity in scripture. I desire more truth rooted in love, not fear. But I’m learning to appreciate the scripture’s good intentions.
LVB: If you were stranded on a deserted island, what three non-necessities would you want with you?
Hinsch: Juice, my daughter and my dog, Pearl.
LVB: Name the person in your life who influenced you the most.
HInsch: My friend Ann Collins and her husband in England, who first showed me about eating real whole food and living in a sustainable community.
LVB: What piece of advice would you give to your younger self?
Hinsch: Don’t try so hard. Be yourself and just love. When I was young, I was protecting my heart and trying to be what my parents wanted me to be instead of just letting my light shine.
LVB: If you could bring something to the Lehigh Valley from another part of the world, what would it be?
Hinsch: More cafes like Greenmouth. More cafes with real food, food not coming out of a package.
LVB: Are you a print person or a digital person?
Hinsch: Print. I’m striving to live a life like our ancestors did. My ideal life would be homesteading.
LVB: As a female business owner, do you ever feel marginalized?
Hinsch: Yes. I’m surprised I’m not supported more. I don’t know of too many restaurants that are owned by women. Where are the women? Come support me and what Greenmouth is doing to support women.
LVB: Is there anything else you want to say to our readers?
Hinsch: Yes, I want to say that supporting each other is important. Support local. I practice what I preach that way.
When you can, shop and eat local. We are creating the world we want to live in. When given the chance to support the small business, do it. We change the world together.