Golden Deli Express is open in Temple City (SGV)
The march of Vietnamese restaurants in the SGV continues east with the opening of Golden Deli Express in Temple City. It is related to the Golden Deli restaurant in San Gabriel.
I can't give a comprehensive critique of their food because I ordered only one dish: com bo nuong & cha goi (broken rice with grilled beef and egg rolls). It tasted about the same as from the original location. If that holds true for the rest of the items, then it would be great. The menu, however, is noticeably smaller. It has appetizers, pho, hu tieu, mi, curry, banh mi, and the most common bun (rice vermicelli) and rice dishes.
Here are some observations:
1. It has a very clean, modern design. It is not cramped at all, and there is a waiting area inside the restaurant.
2. You enter from the Las Tunas entrance and order at the counter. Then you go to a table, and they bring the order to you (takeouts are different, of course).
3. When you enter, there is a very large menu in English on the wall. It is geared for non-Vietnamese speakers. For example, they'll have something like:
Rice with any three items below: $5.75-$7.50
Grilled beef, grilled pork chop, shrimp paste, egg roll
[Note: this is from memory and may not be the actual prices.]
4. They even have a menu entirely in English, which threw me off completely. I had to use the Vietnamese/Chinese menu instead just to make sure I was ordering the right item. :-)
5. It is designed with an open kitchen.
6. There is a soda machine for customers to get their non-specialty sodas.
7. The decor is really impressive (at least to my primitive standards).
8. There are small booths that will seat about 4 people. The rest are tables with that seat about 4 as well (although you could move them together).
9. The cashiers speak English very well.
10. Parking is available behind the restaurant.
In essence, it is designed for a non-Vietnamese speaking lunch crowd. I will return there to get a better idea of the food they serve.
I can't say if they are on par because I ordered only one of their dishes. It is the latest restaurant opened by the family, so I'm assuming they are using the same recipes. However, that is no guarantee for success. Saigon Eden was started by the same family as Pho 79, but I don't think they are nearly as good.
Thank you for the breaking news, Ray! Your post inspired me to walk over tonight to check out this exciting culinary addition to TC. The ambiance is as you described, and is notably well-lit and clean. Staff is young, very friendly, and generous with the herb/sprout condiments. While I enjoyed the beef pho and spring rolls, I can't wait to try the cherimoya smoothie!