It was on Mother’s Day that I brought my mother to try out this little Saigon Vietnam fusion restaurant at a small lane off Carpenter Street Kuching.
Just a few shops away from the popular pub for tourists lay this little gem. The place was decorated with some Vietnamese painting, an aquarium greeting you at the entrance and some small cloth toys at the counter, which I imagined is for sale. Some wood painting decorated the wall, and dim light with wooden furniture all combined to create a urban oriental feel, though I felt that the furniture was a bit large for a small restaurant, as it occupied more space than necessary.
The restaurant is not very big, and there were a few diners already having their dinner when we arrived but the staff there was very busy taking orders and helping out at the kitchen. The ambience stayed lively with many tourists flocking in.
The food variety was not many, and there were some Vietnamese coffee and soft drinks at RM4 a can. We were greeted with cold wheatgrass drink each upon sitting down. Menu was simple, the usual ever popular spring rolls consisting of sliced prawn, vegetables and a slice of meat and beef noodles.
It being a Mother’s Day, we ordered some spring rolls at RM18 a plate, baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce ( 3 small crabs at RM42), some vermicelli with pork chop, and vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick.
Baked crabs with special Vietnam sauce
We find the spring rolls a bit bland but perhaps that is how Vietnam spring rolls are like and the dish that we liked the best was the baked crab. It was a bit sweet and yet tasty. When I asked for a shell breaker to break open the crab shell, they gave me a piece of paper and the shell breaker. That was great because usually when you pound down on the crab shell, the juices from within the shell or the broken pieces of the shell would fly away and may landon your face which could be rather embarrassing. So with the paper, I wrapped it over the crab before I pounded down on it. Nice, neat and no mess except when you have to diligently pull out the broken shell from the flesh, which was also fun in eating crab meat.
Vermicelli with prawns stuffed over lemongrass stick
After that, our Mango Sticky Rice dessert arrived. It cost RM25 a plate. It was not exactly what I expected. I remembered tasting them in Thailand, and the sticky rice with the sauce which is actually made up of coconut cream is a bit salty. Here, the sauce is sweet only, and not salty like the Thai mango sticky rice dessert. Again, perhaps this Is their own version of a Vietnam Mango Sticky Rice dessert. My brother however enjoyed the sticky rice, as he found it cooked just nice and tender. As novices about Vietnamese food, we were not sure what to expect but the simple menu and the delicious baked crab was satisfying enough and it was a very fulfilling dinner for my whole family.