6118 West Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035, PH: 323.651.2888
A couple of months ago I wrote a post about my experience giving pho another try. I had tried it once before and was thoroughly unimpressed, but when I tried a pho restaurant in Hollywood, I feel in love with the delicious Vietnamese soup; I could not wait until my next pho experience. So when I was deciding where to go for this week’s foodie venture, somewhere where I could get a good bowl of pho was the first thought that popped into my head. I came across Vien Café in the Mid City area of Los Angeles, and decided to go check it out.
So a brief disclaimer…I really hate to blog about bad experiences, but everything in life is not amazingly awesome, and it is the same in the blogging/foodie venture world; it is only fair that I share both experiences. My experience at Vien Café was NOT the best. 😦 As soon as I walked in, I was greeted (if I can call it a greeting) by a rather impersonal host/server. Honestly, it made me uncomfortable and I wanted to turn around and walk out; however I needed something to blog about, so I forced myself to stay.
I first ordered a Thai Iced Tea, but I also wanted to order a glass of water, but the impersonal waiter was gone before I could say “tea.” I was apprehensive about asking for the water when he came back.
Pho Tom– The pho I ordered that day had a chicken broth base with the rice noodles, shrimp and black mushrooms and was almost $10. It was definitely good, but it was not as great as the pho I had in Hollywood. I added the sriracha, hoisin sauce, sprouts, basil and lime-juice, which enhanced the flavor.
The good thing about Vien Café is they have the Pho on The Run, which is their takeout, half portion of pho served during their lunch hours, for only $5.50. They also have a wide variety of other dishes to try including, spring rolls, rice plates, buhn mi (Vietnamese sandwiches), vegetarian options, and desserts. I wanted to try one of their desserts, Crispy Vietnamese Apple or Banana Fritters, but after I finished my pho, I was READY TO GO!
If I’m ever in the area, and in the mood for pho, I may try Vien Café again; I just hope there is a different server working.