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Jul 30, 2012 06:36 AM

Best Vietnamese in Washington Ave. vicinity?

The options in this area have always seemed a little overwhelming. In a couple of old threads, people have recommended Pho Ha and Nam Phuong. Are these still the best places? Thanks for any suggestions!

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  1. What dishes are you interested in eating? The answer may vary if you are looking for Pho (beef, or non beef), versus bun versus other dishes.

    2 Replies
    1. re: cwdonald

      If I am allowed to speak for TwoTop, "you tell me".

      What would you recommend for Pho, Bun, Noodles, etc.?

      1. re: cwdonald

        Actually we eat seafood but not beef, pork or poultry which I realize narrows the options drastically. Looking at a few menus, it seems as if Nam Phoung is the only place with some veg/seafood offerings...

      2. My favorite is Le Viet, on 11th a few doors north of Washington. I wasn't crazy about Nam Phuong on my one visit but that was a few years ago, I was a bit less into Vietnamese food at the time.

        There's a great tofu banh mi to be had at Saigon Tofu, which is in the two-story shopping center right behind Nam Phuong, on the ground floor closest to 11th St.

        9 Replies
        1. re: Buckethead

          Pretty sure Saigon Tofu closed a while back.

          Nam Phuong has some good seafood options. They do a great deep fried whole fish. They will also make vegetarian summer rolls--usually they have shrimp and pork, but they can omit either or both. The shrimp skewered on sugarcane is really good too, but be advised this is a sort of shrimp paste wrapped around the sugarcane then grilled. You eat the shrimp then suck juice out of the sugarcane. I also recommend the clams in black bean sauce.

          1. re: barryg

            Also good at Nam Phuong are the salt and pepper softshell crabs.

            1. re: barryg

              A new business must have replaced Saigon Tofu, I couldn't remember the name of the place and I used Google Street View to get the name off the building, it's probably outdated imagery. But there is a place in that space that has a great tofu banh mi, I had one maybe 2 months ago.

              1. re: barryg

                Barry, do you know if any of these places use wild caught fish?

                I am so often disappointed with how much farmed fish like Tilapia and Rainbow Trout are used. Granted, this goes for almost all places, not just Vietnamese joints.

                1. re: DougRisk

                  My guess would be none. You cannot get the price points at these types of restaurants without using farmed product.

                  1. re: cwdonald

                    Yup almost definitely just farm raised fish, nothing special in that regard.

                      1. re: DougRisk

                        On the West and Gulf Coast there are definitely oriental restaurants using wild caught fish, just not here on the East Coast. Though I cannot speak definitely for Boston or NYC.

              2. Best pho place in town has been Pho Ha (6th and Washington Ave.) for a long time.

                For eating-out comfort food nothing beats pho or tofu chigae (Korean stew). And for pho I'd brave the slow drive on 76 to visit Pho Ha instead of the nearby places such as "Pho & Beyond" and "Pho and More".

                Here are the reasons: it tastes fresh, the sprouts/basil/pepper slices on the accompanying plate can't be fresher, the bowl is big enough even when you order the "small" serving, It's steaming hot and the soup is tasty, you can order it "custom built" and have only what you want to eat the most in your bowl.

                I have tried many other pho places. Pho Ha beats them all.

                1 Reply
                1. re: borntolovefood

                  Try Mekong River at 1120 S. Front St. (2 blocks south of Washington Ave.).