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The bottom line: An oasis in an unexpected part of town
I was pleasantly surprised when I first visited Lang Van. Lang Van is in a part of town that I honestly would not want to drive through at night. Upon pulling up to the restaurant you will see a small building with an even smaller parking lot out front. Don’t let this fool you. Upon walking in you will immediately notice a cozy and welcoming atmosphere with soft happy music playing in the background. The restaurant is divided in two areas. Both areas have booths and tables. The tables are adorned with a colorful cloth showing a stitching of the provinces of Vietnam.
The menu is quite extensive. There are over 150 menu items. This includes the typical juice drinks found at Vietnamese restaurants. They also serve wine. I visited with a friend and we split the fresh rolls. If you have read my Vietnam Grill review then you know how much I love this small salad bundles. Yes, in my head they count as a salad (don’t judge me too harshly!). As far as rolls goes this is probably as healthy as it gets unless you were to substitute the rice paper for lettuce. The fresh rolls were pretty good. They had several options that were either filled with shrimp, tofu, or chinese sausage. The sauce it was served with was the typical peanut sauce. I am not sure if it had cornstarch in it but it did have that cornstarch-y aftertaste. I would definitely order the rolls again but wasn’t too crazy about the sauce.
For my main dish I had the lemongrass chicken. It was good but I have another favorite in town! I will save that for another review. The dish was sauted pieces of chicken with onions and spices. It was served on a bed of shredded lettuce. White rice was served on the side. Would I have it again? Probably not, because I have found my favorite at another place, but with 150+ items in the menu I don’t think I will have any trouble finding items to eat there.
My friend ordered one of the pho dishes with beef that you see pictured above. He commented that it was sweeter than most pho dishes but that it wasn’t overwhelming and it went down smooth. I was too preoccupied stuffing…er…eating my dish so I didn’t get the chance to beg for a try of his but I will be sure to come back and try it in the future!
Items worth noting is that they have a vegetarian section on the menu that features a number of dishes. There is also a low calories section. One thing that stood out for me and that I will definitely come back for is that they serve Banh mi, which is a Vietnamese sandwich. The other Vietnamese restaurants in town that I have been to do not serve it, not that I am aware of anyways. The Banh mi is a real treat if you have never had one. The bread is more light and airy than your typical sandwich and it is commonly served with meat and/or veggies.
Overall, the services was very good and extremely quick. I am looking forward to many more visits to Lang Ven as I explore and discover their extensive menu.