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Who has the best cha gio (Vietnamese fried spring rolls) ?

LotusRapper May 17, 2012 03:27 PM

An informal poll on which restos you feel make the better/best ones ? Years ago I thought Bao Chau (Hastings/Slocan) had some of the best. But my roster needs updating. Your suggestions are most welcomed :-) Thx.

  1. LotusRapper May 22, 2012 10:06 AM

    So replying to my own, and to SarsVancouver's rec, I now proclaim Cilantro on Fraser/E.26 as having the best cha gio ...... IMHO :-)

    1. m
      mrbitterpants May 22, 2012 09:33 AM

      I'm going to throw my vote in for Thai Son on Broadway.

      1 Reply
      1. re: mrbitterpants
        LotusRapper May 22, 2012 09:54 AM

        They also have another location on E. 1st/Renfrew (upstairs from T&T) and IIRC a third in Richmond.

      2. s
        sarsvancouver May 19, 2012 07:25 PM

        try cilantro at Fraser and 27th
        not greasy, good price 4.50 for 2 rolls (10 pieces if I recall correctly)
        very tasty as is their pho

        4 Replies
        1. re: sarsvancouver
          LotusRapper May 19, 2012 08:32 PM

          Thank you ! I go to Gah Lok a couple doors down to buy frozen Chinese dumplings often, but somehow always bypassed Cilantro (I think their window decals say something about Chinese-Vietnamese cuisine). Will definitely go *in* next time for pho and rolls.

          1. re: sarsvancouver
            LotusRapper May 22, 2012 09:51 AM

            I went there for a "snack" yesterday. Had #32, fried spring rolls (I added extra roll) with grilled pork on vermicelli. Came on a large square plate, carefully arranged and garnished. The rolls were GREAT --- light crispy skin, not greasy, enveloping a very tasty filling of meat, mushrooms, carrots and noodles. Filling is fluffy, not lumpy as you sometimes get, and did I say very tasty ? Even with repeated dips into the nuoc cham the skin remained crispy. The grilled pork was deeply flavorful and appeared well-marinated, with a good mix of fatty bits and leaner bits. All for $7.50 (extra roll was around $2 I think), so total was around $10 before taxes.

            Cilantro is clean, elegant, modern and charming inside. No neons !! I would not hesitate bringing out-of-town guests there. Service was attentive and friendly (husband-wife team). They are my new local favorite ! Thanks SarsVancouver for the rec :-D

            1. re: LotusRapper
              grayelf May 22, 2012 11:01 PM

              Thanks for TOFTT, LR. I noticed this place when it first (re)opened as Cilantro and thought it looked worthy but then it fell off my radar. Care to comment on the grilled pork and vermicelli?

              1. re: grayelf
                LotusRapper May 23, 2012 12:11 AM

                The grilled pork was flavorful and appeared well-marinated, with a mix of fatty bits and leaner bits. But it wasn't skewered, just cut up into a bunch of pieces. Ideally for me, the meat would be even fatter and juicier.

                The vermicelli was a wee bit clumpy. And warm. Since I was the only customer at the time (5pm) I heard the microwave beep in the kitchen and knew the vermicelli was reheated. It could have been better, but I've had worse too. The nuoc cham was average.

                But I think for the ambiance and price alone, it was worth it. The food was a notch better than other restos at the same price point. I can't say more until I've eaten more dishes there. And I will be back.

          2. tdeane May 18, 2012 11:15 AM

            Bao Chau is still the best value. Probably not the best spring roll but they're pretty good and no one gives you more spring roll for your money.

            2 Replies
            1. re: tdeane
              LotusRapper May 18, 2012 11:21 AM

              Thank you sir, for the re-confirmation :-) In the mid -'90s I used to buy them 20-30 at a time to bring to potlucks (IIRC each was like $1). But since their prices crept up I hadn't gone back, not because I think their quality gone down, just that I was looking to other places.

              Hope your oven is back online !

              1. re: LotusRapper
                tdeane May 19, 2012 12:53 AM

                It is!

            2. k
              kinnickinnik May 18, 2012 07:36 AM

              Green Lemongrass on Kingsway - somewhat greasy but very crisp.

              1. j
                Jzone May 18, 2012 12:19 AM

                Not sure if you make it out to Surrey much, but Pho Tam (right across the street from the Surrey Central Skytrain station) has great pho and excellent spring rolls. Now, that said some think the filling is too much like gyoza or potsticker filling, but I like them. If you get the pho, try #14 the spicy combo pho. It's pretty satisfying. :)

                1 Reply
                1. re: Jzone
                  k
                  ksksks May 27, 2012 02:12 PM

                  i totally agree the filling's a tad different but for me its the best.

                2. fmed May 17, 2012 10:44 PM

                  My old fave was Pho Thai Hoa on Kingsway - but I had a mediocre one there last time I went. It may have been an off night. Check it out.

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