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New Vietnamese on Staten Island

Well Staten Island has it's first Vietnamese Restaurant Pho Mac (1407 Richmond Avenue), it's only been open 3 days and I've eaten there twice, the food is amazing. Usually we have to travel to Brooklyn for any authentic asian food in this culinary wasteland- food is great, decor is wonderful, he question is how long can it last on Staten Island???

I've already mentioned it to a few people who looked at me in horror and said they would have no idea what to order (sigh)...I guess it's not going to be around for long. I'm going to enjoy it while it lasts.

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  1. I will definitely try the restaurant. Vietnamese is new for me....I don't eat meat except for chicken and fish, I imagine rice is the staple, what would you suggest for a first time indulger?

    1 Reply
    1. re: karalk

      There are lots of chicken and fish dishes, the spring rolls were amazing, pleanty of shrimp dishes-- I didn't try any fish but I had the lemongrass chicken which was wonderful, they also had "seafood on crisy noodle" which might be good for a first timer, some of the dishes are similar to a Chinese menu and I think you will have no trouble ordering. We also had the lemonaid-tea (iced) which was fresh brewed and delicious, not too sweet. There are pleanty of pictures on the menu so you can see what your getting- good luck!

    2. Also ask for a table upstairs- it's beautiful up there with private booths seperated by bamboo screened windows, not sure how else to describe it.

      1. I actually just noticed this place today while checking out the sushi place next door. Will definitely have to check it out.

        1. I saw them getting ready to open this place a few weeks ago, when taking my cat to the Vet next door. Glad to hear the good news.

          Do they also seem good for takeout? And can you give an idea of the price range?

          Thanks for the post!!

            1. They do serve Pho-we split one for an app and it was wonderful- delicious broth and tender meat. They do have take out- we took out last Thursday- evrything was delicious- only drawback is that they did not include the sauces...I guess we should have asked for them...I also cut them some slack because the opened the day before, I'm sure there are some kinks to work out. The prices are very reasonable- all entrees are under $19- most in the $10-13 range- they also have all sorts of "dishes on rice" for $6.95-5.95 (I had the pork chop on rice which was a grilled chop- delicious)and they are sold not only at lunch time but all day- we had a full dinner, apps, entree and tea for under $30- you can't beat it!! Soups were all under $7- for a soup that is really a meal. I can't wait to go back.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Sandinyc

                Well, that sounds great! Can't wait to try it. Thanks for reporting.

              2. This place is great and rivals many Vietnamese places i've been to in Chinatown. I wouldn't worry about it going anywhere, two weeks ago there was a 25 minute wait for a table on a Saturday night.

                1 Reply
                1. re: sifoodie

                  We went there Saturday night around 8:30, and while we didn't have to wait, it was definitely more crowded than I expected. All but one of the upstairs booths were taken (we got the one), and most of the downstairs tables were full too. The upstairs is very pleasant with the screen-separated booths. The downstairs is your standard flourescent-lit room, albeit very clean.

                  I'm no expert in Vietnamese food, but we really enjoyed it. We split an order of summer rolls for an appetizer, and for mains had something like beef with lemongrass flavor over vermicelli and crispy shrimp with salt and black pepper with sauteed onions and (raw) green-leaf lettuce. Overall, the flavors seemed a bit milder than what we expected (based on our experience at New Pasteur in Chinatown), but quite fresh and good. Prices are very reasonable, and for now it's BYOB.

                  So maybe you're right, sifoodie. I hope so. It sure is nice to have a new and different place to go in our own borough.

                2. We cross Staten Island regularly and noticed Pho Mac from the highway, resolving to stop in as soon as we could. Our first visit was a real success. On Sunday, we had a late (2:30) lunch at Pho Mac, where we were warmly welcomed and served promptly. Asian families and couples were seated at other tables and a banquet was being held upstairs. We ordered a pho: sweet and sour seafood, a curried tofu vegetable dish and grilled shrimp with sugar cane, listed among the chef's specials on the menu.

                  The pho for one easily would serve four. Loaded with salmon, green chilies, pineapple and bean sprouts, it was both hot and sour, as advertised.

                  The curried tofu dish had easily a dozen triangularly sliced chunks of tofu, along with onions, peppers and other veggies.
                  Very tasty.

                  The highlight was the grilled shrimp. We were presented with four jumbo shrimp, grilled and sliced, along with large lettuce leaves, rice noodles, sliced carrots and an unidentified clearish-white vegetable that looked like it could be related to a water chestnut, but that a neighboring diner described as being in the garlic family. A piquant sauce was served with the platters. If you've eaten Vietnamese, you know the goal is to create a crepe-like concoction with the veggies and the shrimp, using the lettuce leaves as the crepe. Then one dips the mixture into the sauce. We enjoyed this dish and had enough left over to bring one portion home for our daughter.

                  The host/owner was enthusiastic and warm. He told me that there is not a large number of Vietnamese people on Staten Island, but that Chinese and Korean residents of the Island seem to like Vietnamese cooking.

                  The prices are right, the portions large, BYO a real plus (although there's nothing like a '33' with Vietnamese food).
                  If your travels have you crossing Staten Island or if you live on the Island, Pho Mac is a great addition to the growing choices of dining on Staten Island.

                  1. Thanks for the tip, Sandinyc. Now I have another tasty treat to look forward to when I venture into SI.