The bottom line: Another delicious Vietnamese restaurant in South Blvd.
I love Vietnamese food. I love the delicious soups, the savory dishes, and anything wrapped in rice paper (aka fresh rolls). As soon as I found out about Doan’s existence I knew I had to go try it.
I drove up to one of the many strip malls on South Blvd. From the outside Doan’s look like many of the establishments around.
As soon as I stepped inside though I felt the outside world fade. I looked around into the wide dining room noticing their lilac walls and wine colored booths. They had soothing music playing in the background. At the back of the room is the bar. A waitress sat me and I sat there looking over the menu while I waited for my friend. Their menu is expansive although like some of the other Vietnamese joints in town. They had the usual dishes (pho, grilled meats, vegeterian, rolls, noodles, vermicelli, hot pots).
My friend arrived and we got down to the business of ordering delicious food. I started with the fresh rolls filled with sliced chicken, vermicelli noodles, and lettuce all wrapped in rice paper. It was served with a peanut sauce.
I love fresh rolls because I get to eat my ‘salad’ (or so I tell myself) in a delicious form. This were good although the sliced chicken across the roll occasionally make it hard to bite into cleanly.
For dinner I went with the hot pot. This is an interesting dish because you can make it your own. While ordering you get to choose a base broth, meats, starches, and veggies. I went with the spicy chicken broth, sliced beef, tofu, and spinach. They have two sizes a small and large. A small is really big enough for two people to share.
The waitress brought a burner to the table, various sauces and condiments, and all of the ingredients in their raw form. I opened the lid for the broth and it was and it was quickly bubbling away.
I threw in some of my ingredients and patiently waited while I ate my fresh rolls. The wait (which was not long but when you are hungry a second multiples into ten) was worth it. The broth was delicious, savory, and oh so deliciously spicy. The beef was so finely cut that it cooked quickly, the tofu was a great addition because it just soaked up all the flavor of the broth. Overall I was pretty happy with my dish.
My friend ordered the pad thai and she did mention that it was not the best she has ever had. Overall, I have to say that there are two other Vietnamese restaurants in town that I really, really love. At this time Doan’s is coming in third. I wouldn’t mind going back if I am in the area to try some of their other dishes.