Vietnamese in Paris
I just moved to Paris and had dinner last night in the 20th off the Belleville metro stop. My husband and I ate at Tin Tin Vietnamese Restaurant. It was crowded and we were hungry and it was quite cold so we decided to stop. It was only ok. The service was prompt and friendly but the peanut sauce was syrupy and the spring rolls were leathery. I probably wouldn't go back. I am originally from Houston, TX, a city which has fabulous Vietnamese restaurants, so perhaps I am a little spoiled nevertheless, I am taking Tin Tin off the list. The only real perk is that it was cheap: 20 euro for one appetizer, two Bun bowls and tea for two. There were several other options in the area including one directly across the street. I will report back as I discover more.
You won't best Houston for any kind of Asian cuisine in Paris. It's just never going to happen. Sometimes I hit the Viet places in the 13th in the mall with the Paris Store with some satisfaction.
That may be. Meanwhile, you can try Lac Hong ($$$) rue Lauriston, Co Tu rue Croix-Nivert ($), Thao Ly rue Berthollet (hyper cheap).
In Chinatown, Pho 14 never disapoints. Chinatown is more a bout China than Vietnam. Likafo and Asia Palace clearly lead the race there. Lao Thai is thought highly of Thai cuisine lovers -- by Paris standards.
Let me add that I am always dubious about claim of more authentic Asian restaurants in the US, Houston or the West Coast. In my experience, they're not more authentic or better, just better suited to local taste, just like Asian food in Paris.
I'd suggest Le Palanquin, on the Rue Princesse in the 6th. Better than the Vietnamese food in the Washington DC area, which is fairly strong given our large Vietnamese community. The "raviolis vietnamiennes" (steamed pork dumplings) are among the best things I have ever had, vietnamese or otherwise. There is also a very good "marmite de riz" (caramel chicken and mushroom baked on rice in a clay pot).
The restaurant can be hard to find--a couple of years ago my parents spent four days in Paris and never could find the street. But it's not far from St Germain marketplace, just check a map and/or ask for directions.
Minh Chau on the rue de la Verrerie, just behind the BHV department store. The tables are formica, it's so tiny you have to leave the restaurant and enter the neighbouring building to use the toilet, but it's very reasonably priced, and is very good. I've been going there for years and would recommend everything - though I particularly like the Pork au Poivre. They even have a very good dessert - bannana, coconut and tapioca pudding. They even have a "bottomless tea cup" policy! Only thing, I think the owners MAY be from Laos, so for purists it probably doesn't qualify as Vietnamese.