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Restaurants & Bars 3

Concord Vietnamese Update

Jim M. | Oct 20, 2004 09:52 PM

Saigon Cafe, at the far end of the Park & Shop mall across from Spitzer's Music, is no more. They were the only restaurant with banh mi that I knew of in this part of Contra Costa. They were open last week but gone today. If anyone knows of any other banh mi places around Concord, please let me know.

So instead of banh mi, I had pho. There are two pho places now, down at the other end of Park & Shop, near Las Montanas Mexican restaurant. Pho Hoa Hiep 5 (sign in window also says "Kevin's Noodle Shop") is a branch with others in Oakland, SF, and South Bay, I believe. Right next door (how did the leasing agent get away with that?), and newly opened, is Victory 3 Pho, which is where I went today. Both have very good pho but noticeably different. A large bowl costs a bit more at Victory but it seems a little bigger, and had a more generous portion of all the beef parts. The broth at Victory is darker and a little sweeter, the broth at PHH seems more refined but is still quite flavorful. I think my preference is leaning toward Victory but I'll have to do some more comparisons before I know for sure. Victory had a category on its menu called "Salted Dishes", but now that I think a bit, I think they meant "sauteed/stir fried". They have frog legs and some other items that PHH doesn't have. They also have a "Hot Pot" category, which I don't think PHH has. I'm pretty much a pho addict but I may try a hot pot some day, they looked interesting.

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