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Oct 8, 2006 03:37 PM

Le Paradis - Vietnamese in Hayward (5 dishes reviewed)

Rice plate with grilled pork, grilled shrimp and a custard like mixture of egg, crab and vermicelli. The pork had very nice grilled flavor, a bit on the chewy side but might be intentional, slightly sweet and had deep marinate flavor of spices from probably lemongrass. Shrimps were also very nicely grilled with the skins turned to crisps. Would be better if it were larger. The egg custard were also exemplary with nice crab flavor. This is a great dish without a doubt.

Chilled salad of shrimp had lots of juliened veggies in a slightly sweet dressings. Shrimps were halved. Strong hints of mint leaves. This was a winner indeed.

Pho with mixed meats of rare steak, slices of beef and beef balls. It was good. The broth had that anise flavor I think.

Pad Thai here is quite unique. Not the usual sweet Thai version. Strong garlic flavor. The noodles were also toothsome, not limp at all. Could use more shrimps though. It had pieces of clamari that were scored in a net pattern for tenderness, nice touch. This is a spicy dish and wife complaints about it since it was unusual for a pad thai. I think this was an awesome dish. The lady owner (I think) was friendly and told me that it is her own version of pad thai.

Vietnamese sandwich with grilled chicken is delicious. Good french bread. The veggies were seasoned and cut nicely. The meat had good flavor too. Quite good IMO. $2.50

This place is very reasonable, we got out for less than $30 with tips. Large parking in the rear. Friendly service. A young boy wearing glasses was our waiter, maybe 10 years old. He was efficient and gave us good advice - he looked smart.

The menu is not very extensive or had exotic dishes and the decor is non-existent- just a very simple place to eat. But it had a big yard with a fence and my 2 young boys loved running around the yard.

In short this place is a winner for Vietnamese food. The kitchen showed care on the food they produced.

Anybody else tried this place yet ?

Hayward has maybe 4 Vietnamese restaurants. 3 of them were quite good on the dishes that I tried, have not tried the 4th place on A street yet. We're quite fortunate here with these choices.

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  1. Hi Han, that pad thai sounds interesting, don't think I've ever tried something like that in a Vietnamese restaurant. Does it have tamarind flavor in it too?

    1. Our family goes there all the time. They're very kind and accommodating to our almost three year old daughter. They are also a bakery and have well made french pastries and they will do 'custom' work. I've had Alice Nguyen make a Croquenbouche and a St. Honore cake. Here's a link to her story:

      1. That's a great story, thanks for sharing the article. Croquembouche and St. Honore aren't easy to find around here, what other pastries do you recommend?

        1. The Pad Thai does NOT have tamarind flavor IIRC. Also, it has the slightly orange color. It is different but very nice version I think.