Vietnamese in Chinatown....
Normally, my go-to rec is Xinh Xinh...We ate there a few weeks ago, and it wasn't all that. They forgot the dressing on my bun, the herbs were tired, and the lettuce was brown edged...Have I missed a down-hill alert? Anyone else have any recs for a different Vietnamese spot? I'm thinking soup in this cold, damp weather...Of course, there's always Taiwan Cafe for death by Seafood in Clay Pot...
your only choices for vietnamese in chinatown are pho pasteur, xinh xinh, pho hoa, and dong khanh. i usually go to pho pasteur or xinh xinh if i'm in the area and craving vietnamese food. personally, i don't think any of them are as good as what you can get outside of chinatown. if you want really good vietnamese i would head to dorchester where there are a wealth of better options
We ended up at Taiwan Cafe, cuz the idea of having adult beverages with our soup was a good one. We had scallion pancakes (still the best in town), and Death by Seafood in Clay Pot ("You want that? Is BIG!!!") The Seafood in Clay Pot is a little lighter on seafood than it used to be, but still a great value on a cold damp night at $17.95...We stuffed ourselves, and then brought home 2 soup containers of leftovers.
BTW, the lg. sake there is a teakettleful, for $20...don't bother unless you have a crowd...
What other recommendations do you guys have for Taiwan Cafe? I just got back from Chicago where a Taiwanese buddy of mine said this was his go-to place in Chinatown, and that it was legit. I'm headed there for dinner tonight or tomorrow but can't reach the guy to ask him what I should order. The Death by Seafood in Clay Pot sounds amazing... what is it like? Would you get it for just two people or do you generally order more?
Been a while since I've been there, but if you search the board there are MANY reviews. Other excellent Taiwanese place in Boston:
Jo Jo Taipei, Formosa Taipei, Mulan, Shangri-La (Belmont), Blue Asia.
149 Belmont St, Belmont, MA 02478
JoJo Tai Pei Restaurant
103 Brighton Ave, Boston, MA 02134
Blue Asia Cafe
113 Brighton Ave, Boston, MA 02134
315 Marrett Rd, Lexington, MA 02421
Clay pots are excellent, but admittedly not really a summer food. They're great when the weather is cold (at least coolish). Clay pots are big enough to serve at least 4 IMO, unless they've shrunken the size since my last visit. If you don't mind leftovers, then go ahead with the order even with just 2 -- that's how I had it the first time, and my sister and I both had plenty to take home.
At least for pho, I think Pho Pasteur is still the best in Chinatown with the deepest broth. All other elements of pho being generally the same at other places (i.e., the noodles, the fresh veggie plate on the side and the sliced meat/tendon/etc. in the soup itself), I think the depth of flavor in the broth is what sets a really good bowl of pho apart from others... Over 15 or 20 visits to Pho Pasteur and Pho Hoa, I think Pho Pasteur has the edge.