If you are vegan, live in the Twin Cities metro and have not been to Ethique Nouveau, then put down your mouse, get on your bike (or car or the bus), and go there now. The honey alternative they sell is more than enough reason to visit the store immediately (agave nectar has nothing on this stuff).
And if faux-honey doesn't float your boat then how about a huge bookshelf full of the (soy) cream of the crop in vegan cookbooks and animal rights literature. It's faux-honey for your brain!
And then there's the chocolate. And the huge companion animal section. And the whole bookshelf full of stuff for your vegan children (Isabooties, books, puzzles, message tees, etc.). And a ton of makeup and body care product.
That just skims the surface. There is a wealth of vegan goods here, and they're still expanding their selection. Is there something you want that they don't have? They take suggestions.
Quick example: I wanted to order a book online, but wondered if Ethique Nouveau had it in stock (buy from local businesses if you can, right?). They didn't have it, but Dallas, the manager of the store, said she would order some copies and let me know when they arrived. A week or so later, they arrived, I went into the store and bought a copy and instead of the profit going to Amazon.com, it went to the Animal Rights Coalition. The profit from that book will now be used by our local animal rights group to help animals. This is how it's supposed to work, people.
As a fan of Fast and Furless (the other vegan shop in minneapolis), I was concerned that there would be too much overlap between the products that the two stores sell and people's vegan dollars would be spread too thin between the two stores. But I'm happy to see that the two shops carry barely any of the same items. If you're a Fast and Furless regular, be sure to make the trip to Ethique Nouveau as well. You'll be glad you did.
A couple superficial drawbacks that I think will, for the most part, be fixed with time:
-The store is so new that they don't have a sign out front yet. Pay attention to the address.
-A lot of items are floor-level, which makes it hard to see everything the store has to offer.
-It may be a personal failing on my part, but the name Ethique Nouveau just bothers me. I have no problem with French words, I just can't understand why it's not called "New Ethic". In fact, that's what I call it around the house: New Ethic. Has a nice ring to it.
Now stop reading and go get your faux-honey.