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Restaurants & Bars

FeldmanFest: San Jose Vietnamese crawl

Ruth Lafler | Sep 7, 200412:33 AM     5

We somewhat curtailed our crawl due to the heat on Sunday. Dave and I met up with Yimster and David Cook at the Great Century Mall, where Yimster immediately plunked the Daves down at Pho Thien Long
for cha ca (catfish sauteed with turmeric served on a bed of dill and scallions over a brazier). We also shared a big bowl of pho (not sure which combo, but IIRC it had rare beef, brisket and tripe) and some spring rolls. I love the cha ca here -- so light and yet so flavorful. The spring rolls were very good, with both roasted pork and shrimp; both the noodles and the wrappers were very fresh and tender.

We then strolled around the mall, checking out the food court and stopping by the bakery at the entrance (I don't quite understand the appeal of green waffles, but they sure smell good!). We also went around the corner to Saigon Bakery (banh mi $1.50 each/buy two, get one free -- surely the best food bargain around!) and through the market there. After Yimster said his farewells I was determined to "crawl" so I dragged the Daves across the street to the sweet and snack shop (Hien Khanh) for a Vietnamese slush made from various bits of sweet/tapioca-y stuff, coconut milk and shaved ice. Very refreshing on a hot day. We also poked our heads into Lucy's tamale factory, but none of us could muster up the will to buy one.

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