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Jan 24, 2007 02:53 AM

vietnamese restaurants

any vietnamese restaurants in monmouth or middlesex counties that are really good?

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  1. Bamboo Leaf in Bradley Beach is not exclusively Vietnamese, but has pho and some other VN dishes - the food is very good. BYO

    1. I would not call it "very good", but we go to Saigon II in Lincroft (corner of Rt 520 and Middletown-Lincroft Rd. Because it's nearby and the staff is really nice. The menu is very mainstream and the ingredients are fresh.

      Again, this place is not special, but it's fine as a local option.

      7 Replies
      1. re: val ann c

        We tried Saigon II shortly after they opened. I'm not sure what you mean by "mainstream," (as opposed to "authentic"?), but the problem was that the food we had wasn't even minimally tasty.

        1. re: RGR

          RGR, I stayed away from Saigon II for a couple years due to disappointment. I went back twice in the Fall and found the pho and appetizers comforting and competently prepared.
          By "mainstream" I mean it's not creative, not innovative, not highly seasoned. Not worth a special trip, but a fine option if you want pho and don't want to drive far.
          I don't know enough about Vietnamese food to address the authenticity question.

          1. re: val ann c

            Val, I like apps (sometimes like making a meal of them in Asian restaurants), and my husband loves pho. Since I value your opinion, and you feel things have improved, maybe we'll give it another try.

            I'm no expert on Vietnamese cuisine either. However, our daughter has been to Viet Nam, and because she says the food at our favorite NYC Vietnamese restaurant, Bao Noodles, is reasonably authentic, I use it as a comparison.

            1. re: RGR

              RGR -- If you go to Saigon II, you may want to call first. I believe they are doing a re-model.
              Also, don't have your expectations too high. I doubt Saigon II will compare well to Bao Noodles. I mention Saigon II on this board only because it's the only Vietnamese restaurant in the Red Bank area and the food is competent.

              1. re: val ann c

                Val, Rest assured I am not expecting Saigon II to even come close to Bao Noodles. I'll be happy if the food is just decent.

                Oooh, a re-model would be nice. My recollection is that the interior was totally decor deficient. But even if they gussy things up, if the food's not good, who cares?

            2. re: val ann c

              Hi Val,

              I've stayed away from Saigon II for the past couple years also, partly because their food, but mostly because their waitstaff. Do they have the same staff they did earlier or has the waitstaff changed also?

              1. re: joonjoon

                I've always found the waitstaff to be pleasant. I don't know if the waitstaff has changed.

        2. As to Middlesex, try Pho An Dho on Route One in Edison. Their Pho is great.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Marcharlan

            Just ate at Pho An Dho yesterday. Their Pho was excellent. Very tasty, flavorful, and extremely hot. I thought it was tastier than the one off Rt 9 in South Amboy/Sayerville area. We also ordered beef sate with rice noodles and Shredded pork and egg rolls with rice noodles. Both were good, the beef sate not as flavorful as I was expecting though. Also, I liked that they served lime and hot chilie slices with the Pho along with bean sprouts and some basil leaves.

          2. This is probably of little help since it's not in Monmouth or Middlesex county, but Little Saigon in Atlantic City is absolutely the best Asian restaurant on earth! The mixed grill, fish in hot pot and hot & sour fish soup are like mama's milk!

            1. We just tried a restaurant that is in the A&P mall off of Route 1 in North Brunswick. Their Pho was quite tasty as was their grilled pork chop.