And the star, Dry Hu Tieu Nam Vang with soup and some real good tomato sauce, better than Scott Conants tomato sauce! Phuongs is known for the clear noodles. Get the clear noodles. Get the beans sprouts steamed, too.
you only go to croissant dore for the fruit tarts. those godly fucking fruit tarts.
song long is truly a little saigon OG, and one of few serving OG french/vietnamese fare. i’ve eaten tons of breakfast there, usually eating the eggs w/ bread, the beef stew, or the chicken/fish noodle soup (hu tieu ga ca)
Crispy!!! Shrimp and bean sprouts in the crepe with a hint of coconut milk. Cut a piece and place it in the lettuce with some mint leaves, dip it in some sweet sauce and enjoy. One of my favorite Vietnamese dishes. I might like this better than Van’s.
Comes with a plate of herbs/veggies/limes/chopped chiles/sprouts added those in and with some tableside chili sauce. Mix well. Definitely taste the funk in this, but not as funky as Lao-style papaya salad. Overall taste is savory-umami with a touch of fermented funk.
-Use my Google-Fu and translate Mai’s Kitchen homestyle menu and try the other dishes. Or just get a Vietnamese GF.
-Vietnamese Bar Food, mostly seafood based. OC and Lau, and Tram Chim seem to be the 2 more popular places. OC and Lau seems more approachable.
-Vietnamese vegetarian food. Little Saigon has a lot. I also wonder if any of the Buddhist temples have food to help support.
-Dessert places. I know I could get away with pointing. These places are hard to crack. No English menu. Will use Google-Fu to assist.
-Explore the possibility of DIY Banh Mi. Meaning I buy hot baguette, pickled veg, and pate at one place and Chinese BBQ at New Duong Son to make my own Banh Mi. Or cook up some sardines in tomato sauce and put that in a Banh Mi, but over rice is heavenly!!!
-Check out some of the to-go places.
Looks tasty tbh.
-Bun Cha Hanoi. Looking for the best in Little Saigon.
-Continue to seek out the specialists.
-I really wish the fruit stores will do a mix cup of fruit like out in LA with the Rainbow Umbrella Fruit Stands. Seriously, can you imagine jackfruit, mango, coconut, dragon fruit, papaya, durian, soursop, lychee, star fruit, etc with a squirt of some limes??? Oh my gud!!
-Try more noodle soups!!! Bun Thang is one. There is a place doing Bun Bo from different regions.
@JeetKuneBao I admire your sense of adventure and fortitude. Let’s see if I can help with some of your goals…
Vietnamese Bar Food - I grew up eating all of that at home. Mom would throw all of the stuff into the hot pot. I’ve never had that at a restaurant before…super excited to see your adventures there.
Vietnamese vegetarian - Yes, most of the large temples have offer a food service side hustle. Chua Duoc Su (11111 Magnolia St. Garden Grove) has offerings on Saturday and Sunday mornings in the back of the parking lot in front of the nun’s dormitories (cash only…these ladies aren’t ready for FourSquare). They make “beef” jerky, curry, stir-frys, and this cold shredded vegetarian salad whose name escapes my memory and vocabulary right now (when you don’t use it, you lose it.) You also need to make it in way before noon because they do run out. Parking can be a pain here, too. My Mom’s been turning more into vegetarian now that she’s older…I’ll have to ask her for recommendations…I do know she’s been cooking a lot of it and using my sister as her guinea pig.
Desserts - Che (pudding) is big in amongst the community. My favorite is the che suong sa hot luu - gelatin with tapioca-like pearls (made to look like pomegranate seeds) in a light coconut cream. Another one my favorites is the tapioca balls filled with mung bean in a light coconut cream…it’s been so long that I’ve forgotten the name, too. Che bap (corn pudding) is also great if you like corn, and che chuoi (banana pudding) is good if you like banana. Com ruou (literally rice wine) pudding are fermented rice balls and the aroma reminds me of sake…the smell can be quite potent, but it’s really not very boozy at all. When we were little, The silken tofu in ginger syrup is also a solid dessert, but I think that qualifies as Chinese. Mom would buy it at Banh Mi Che Cali because of their cheap deals…she only made a handful of these items at home because they can be rather labor intensive.
DYI banh mi - I think you’ll enjoy this the most. You can source all of your favorites from your favorite locations and fill with your desired choice of meat. This was my Saturday/Sunday morning breakfast growing up.
Hope this list helps a bit. I’ll have to ask Mom for some more specific recs for you.
The scent hit my nose and then I tried the broth and was hit with a strong punch of clove/anise/cinnamon. For the record I never had Pho in Hanoi, but I know that it shouldn’t be this spice heavy. Then was offered a plate of sprouts/herbs.
SGV(Pho Huynh or Pho Filet) or Turtle Tower in SF Tenderloin looks promising.