vietnamese Archive

Xe Lua Vietnamese Restaurant

Xe Lua Vietnamese Restaurant
My friend Anh is VERY picky about Vietnamese restaurants. I’m not saying its a bad thing, it’s definitely a good thing since I love Vietnamese food. I trust her when she said something is good and worth her time. Though I am still a big believer that any sort of Asian food should be cheap and comes in large amount. So when she said that, so far in NYC, her favorite Vietnamese place is Bun SoHo I wasn’t sure what to think of it. For $9-$10 you get a small bowl of bun. I get the idea of paying for quality and where the restaurant is situated. Anyways so I found this cheap hole-in-the-wall Vietnamese restaurant in Chinatown. I emailed it to Anh and she responded by saying “lets go tonight!” Okay….so I met up with her at 6:30 in Chinatown but what used to be the restaurant is now a jewelry store. Thanks Cheap Ass Food for featuring a place that has been closed for almost a year now. Thanks.

Anh pointed out that there was a place she never seen before so thats how we ended up at Xe Lua on Mulberry St.

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Homemade Vegan Banh Mi

Ever since Hanco’s opened their 7th Avenue branch, I’ve been eating their tofu banh mi at least once a week. Then a few weeks ago I was at the Farmer’s Market and spotted a beautiful daikon radish and an idea began to form in my head. Why not make my own banh mi? I grabbed a daikon, some carrots, a few demi-baguettes, a sprig of cilantro, and some eggplants (among other things) and began to plan.

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Questions To Answers – Mandoline Grill

Mandoline Grill
Photos provided by Mandoline Grill

1) Please state your name, name your food truck, the type of food you will be serving and when are you planning to officially roll out your truck??
My name is Mong Skillman. My truck is Mandoline Grill and I will be serving traditional and vegan Vietnamese fare, including banh mi, bun (vermicelli noodles), curry, cha gio (fried spring rolls), and goi cuon (fresh summer rolls). I am hoping to get the truck rolling and out by mid November 2009. (Fingers crossed…)

2) When and how did you come up with the idea of serving food in a truck and how did you decide on your menu?
Ever since I moved to Los Angeles 9 years ago from Hawaii, I’ve been trying to convince my mom to move to LA to open up a Vietnamese restaurant. The idea to serve Vietnamese food in a truck came about when Kogi started rolling around LA late last year – it seemed like an easier and less expensive route to take rather than to start immediately with a brick and mortar. My menu consists of my favorite family recipes from my mom’s restaurant, Song Huong, located in Chinatown, Honolulu, HI.
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Questions To Answers – Nom Nom Truck

Nom Nom Truck *Photos provided by Nom Nom Truck

1) Please state your name, name your food truck, the type of food you serve, and how long have your food truck been in operation?
David Stankunas, Captain Commander of Nom Nom Truck. We serve Vietnamese sandwiches (banh mi) and Vietnamese-inspired tacos…Vietnamese fusion tacos I guess. We’ve been in operation for roughly 5 weeks.
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Frog Legs At Bia Garden

Bia Garden
I remember having frogs for dinner a lot when I was a kid growing up in Hong Kong. Seriously it was one of the dishes that I really looked forward having. Having frog seem such a norm to me. They may be ugly and slimy but once they’re cleaned and chopped and cooked…oh so good. I prefer the dark meat of a frog over the white meat. Can I say that about frogs? Dark and white meat? But ever since I moved to the States I haven’t had frogs at all. Now after 24 years of frogless meals I finally ordered some at Bia Garden. Bia Garden is the brainchild of Michael “Bao” Huynh. I have never been to any of his restaurants nor tasted any food from him. Howard had informed me of this new beergarden and was keeping track of when it was going to open. After much delays it finally opened and we gave it try.
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An Choi

When I entered An Choi I was pleasantly surprised. The interior is dark with distressed walls, the chairs are small stools, the way I remember some of the outdoor eateries in Vietnam being. The tables each have a bottle of sriracha on them. It wasn’t until I got the menu that I realized what I had stumbled into — not authentic Vietnamese, but a restaurant playing at being Vietnamese.

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Hanco’s Park Slope is Now Open

I’m happy to report from personal experience that the Park Slope branch of Hanco’s is now open for business. At $7, the sandwiches are a bit more expensive than they should be, but the tofu sandwich is amazing as always. And the spicy version is as outrageously spicy as it should be. At $4 the small bubble tea was a little disappointing, but that’s not what you go to a banh mi shop for anyway, is it? They were doing a brisk lunch business while I was there, and I know I’ll be back, because where else in Park Slope are you going to get a Vietnamese sandwich?

Hanco’s Park Slope — 350 7th Ave, Brooklyn