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Oct 29, 2006 10:11 PM

Thai Son Vietnamese Cuisine Jackson Heights

New Restaurant that will be opening soon replacing PHO Binh located at 40-10 74th St across from the 74th St/Roosevelt Ave Station. It has not opened. It appears that there's a major renovation in progress. I look forward to it's opening. It should be soon.

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  1. It's connected with Thai Son on Baxter in Manhattan Chinatown.

    1. I drove by yesterday evening - I only got a split-second look, but it did appear to be open. Hope someone will have a chance to stop in an report back soon.

      1. Helen, I stopped by this afternoon and was greeted by a familiar face. It was the heavy set woman who was always behind the counter. The opening date is Tuesday, November 14th.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Mike V

          Oh, excellent, thanks for the news. I had a feeling we might be seeing some of the same people.

          I've been really missing having a reliable Vietnamese place nearby. I drove by on 74th St. this evening, hoping to pick up dinner, and saw that it was pretty dark over there.

          Now I know what I'm having for dinner next Wednesday!

          1. re: Helen F

            my husband and i have been missing the Pho Binh at 74th/Broadway/Roosevelt. it was quite good and we could walk to it (and he likes to have Pho on a weekly basis in an ideal world). we were driving to Little Saigon instead on Grand St, just south of Queens Blvd and frankly, despite my initial excitement over the fuller, more varied menu, i ended up thinking that it was more expensive and as good as some of the new dishes were, they did bad versions of my favorites, except for the Pho. their Pho was less salty, which was a nice thing for us. i bet we'll go to the "new" place tonight!

            1. re: charlie_b

              i went tonight and was extremely disappointed. not nearly as good as Pho Binh was.
              Pho (with everything, including all the offal) was very salty and the meat bits weren't as fresh tasting.
              Goi Tom Shrimp/Cabbage salad was short on herbs and flavor and the vegetables didn't taste as fresh.
              the Grilled Pork Bun was on thicker noodles than the standard vermecelli, and the pork didn't have the right texture or flavor or char. and the lettuce and vegetables were tasteless.

              it looks spiffed up inside and like more quality, but aside from new art, i'm not sure what's different. maybe better lighting?

              unless i hear some serious dissent, i think i won't be there again.

              i hope your mileage varies, because i didn't even eat my meal, and now need to cook something at home.


              1. re: charlie_b

                I'm disappointed. Returning customers won't remain silent
                and will complain. If they don't fix the problem they'll
                be out of business. I plan to wait a week or so and visit
                for a bowl of PHO. If it's not any good, I'll let them know.

                1. re: charlie_b

                  Well, despite charlie b’s lukewarm report, we decided we couldn’t wait long enough to give the kitchen a chance to settle down. I stopped by for some takeout this evening.

                  Their advertised hours are 11-11, the phone # is 476-6805 or -6806. They offer free delivery, though the guy I spoke to said at this point it’s just within a 5-block radius. They plan to expand in a few weeks. That is potentially exciting.

                  I waited quite a while for my order (it was pretty busy inside, despite the rain), so I had a chance to look around. I was looking at a nice toaster-oven behind the counter, thinking to myself that it was the kind you see warming up the bread in Banh Mi places, and wondering why they couldn’t maximize their profit by adding Banh Mi production to their operation. Then I noticed that they actually had “Vietnamese Sandwich” on the picture board. It was a picture of the regular kind, with the cold cuts and cilantro, not the bowl of curry with the French bread next to it. So I asked the main guy at the counter, and he told me that one of the staff makes Banh Mi in the a.m., until they run out of bread. Sure enough, on the front counter there’s a display cabinet, empty but for the bread crumbs inside. So that, too, is potentially exciting.

                  Unfortunately, the meal itself was pretty much as charlie b. experienced it. We both ordered Bun – one of pork, and one of chicken (not on the menu, but they do have it if you ask.) Also a vegetable dish. The noodles were not really thick, but not as thin as normal vermicelli – more like spaghetti. And the vegetable matter in the Bun was pretty paltry – no carrot to be found. Scarcely any cucumber, either – just some thinly sliced cucumber skins with a tiny bit of the cucumber pulp still attached to them. It was nice and crunchy, I’ll give them that. It’s kind of sad – if they’re setting such a low standard right at the start, what will things be like as they go along? There were sprouts, of course, and some scallion and peanuts. I liked the grilled chicken, and I thought the pork was tasty, though it was less grill-y than the chicken was. But the pork slices were meaty and nicely marinated. The vegetable dish was ok – not great, but ok.

                  It was weirdly expensive, too – I was used to paying 16-ish for a meal like this in the old place, and I paid $19 tonight. When I got home and added things up, it looked like the guy overcharged me by exactly $2. Or is it possible that the off-menu chicken Bun costs a full $2 more than the pork? That would be bizarre, though I suppose anything’s possible.

                  So, I’m not running to go back there.

          2. bummer. i stopped in last night to pick up a menu. thanks for the report.
            ^^meant to reply to charlie_b.

            1. I suppose it doesn't matter if it's a flop for food quality but the name is a problem.
              How many know Thai Son has some emotional impact a mountain place in Vietnam legend?
              Passing by,you see big THAI - CHs know THAI and where they want their THAI.
              BAD NAME CHOICE, quite confusing for people who long for good Vietnamese.