Eden center help!!!!
i haven't had their pho, but that "rice paper" is a fine place. http://www.edencenter.com/portfolio/rice-paper/
the wow dish for us on our visit was the clams and pork appetizer, with peanuts. man, it was so flavorful with the savory and herbal elements that it was like thai larb on steroids! (#10 on the pdf link below).
our caramel fish in casserole was good, but too salty for me.
the pork and herb spring rolls were well made and extremely fresh, but other than that…
they were not so outstanding to make me have to get them again. (# 7 on this pdf menu) http://ricepaper-tasteofvietnam.com/uploads/rice_paper_menu.pdf
the crab and vermicelli dish was quite subtle…(#93 on the pdf menu).
so to us..it was a bit of a letdown after the superb appetizer.
NOTE THAT THE POSTED PRICES ONLINE ARE OFTEN MUCH LOWER THAN IN PERSON. our delicious appetizer is listed as $10 on the online PDF menu, but on the menu there at the restaurant, it is $15.
it looks like a lot of the vietnamese people there were getting the grilled meats platter, too. I was told about this place by my vietnamese nail tech, who was enthusiastic about it. (she also recommends the big place at the stand-alone building near wilson blvd. for seafood preparations. apparently it has just doubled in size. she says it is great for crab…). http://www.edencenter.com/portfolio/seaside-crab-house/
about a year ago, fellow chowhound candy and i (and our respective misters) had very nice soups (i know they have bun -- and several varieties, including seafood…and i think also pho) and a very good lotus root salad at a little place called "Phung Hoang." whichever version of the soups we each ordered, each was delicious and plenty big -- packed with goodies (meat and noodles, and plentiful herbs and spices you added in). don't over-order like we did. the summer rolls were delicious, too -- with a nice sauce! (ok, i'll admit i was a hogger on those babies). http://www.edencenter.com/portfolio/p...
unfortunately, there is no menu online to jog my memory. i have a photo somewhere in the iphone ….somewhere…..(yes, yes, i know i need to download them!).
maybe candy has a better memory! i just know it was good and we were stuffed and took a leisurely walk around, exploring.
I loved Rice Paper. Everything I tried there was good, but their specialty are "roll your own" lettuce wraps (served with banh hoi or extra find vermicelli cakes) and goi cuon (salad rolls). The chao tom (ground shrimp cooked on sugar cane), bo nuong (grilled beef), and bo nuong la (beef rolled in grape leaves, like Vietnamese dolmas) were all extremely delicious. All of these are meant to be rolled up by you, the diner, with the accompaniments and then dipped in the mixed fish sauce provided. The grilled beef was deliciously charred and smokey. We also had their banh xeo (stuffed rice flour crepe), clay pot clam rice (needed a dash of salt but was unique and flavorful), and salt n pepper soft shell crab (they didn't use my favorite kind of style of dredging for that, but it was still good). I imagine their "lau" (hot pot) would be good, too. Seems like that kind of place. I am itching to return to Rice Paper.