Duarte is not known for its abundance of good Vietnamese restaurants. Fortunately, Pho Vinh is a good choice for people who want Vietnamese food in that area but don't want to drive to the West SGV or Little Saigon.
Here are a few dishes I've had:
1. Pho Tai: Of course, I had to have this dish in a pho restaurant. It a very good rendition. The flavor of the broth is not too strong nor mild. It is not too greasy.
2. Egg rolls (cha gio): These are small and made with an egg-based wrapper. They were crispy and tasty. The good thing about it is that you can order just two instead of the usual four, so you don't need to finish that much if you don't want to. Unfortunately, they didn't serve this with the vermicelli that often accompanies it. I could have asked for it, but I was too lazy.
3. Rice with grilled beef: Very similar to what you can get at many Vietnamese restaurants. It was quite decent. They used a long-grain rice instead of the broken rice, which I would have preferred. They also served a Western-style salad instead of the usual pickled carrots, cucumbers, and tomatoes that you often find elsewhere.
4. Vermicelli with grilled beef: Again, this is similar to what you can get at many Vietnamese restaurants. It was quite decent.
They offered Banh Xeo as a special, which is probably a mystery to most patrons. They had banh mi, but it was too expensive ($5) considering I can get three for that price in other parts of the SGV.
The menu is noticeably smaller than those found in places like Golden Deli. Although they have Siriracha at the table, I recommend their excellent house chile paste, but you need to request it. It's noticeably spicier and tastier than Siriracha.
The prices are modest: $6-$9 for most dishes. The dining area is clean and well-kept.
To me, it appears that the goal is to try to appease a Western palate but still remain authentic. Like I wrote earlier, if you are in the area and don't want to take the long drive to the West SGV or Garden Grove, this is a good choice.
Pho Vnh is located in a largish strip mall, and it's hard to see from the street.
Pho Vinh’s Vietnamese Cuisine
1362 Huntington Drive
Duarte, CA 91010