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Reno (Unofficial) Chowhound gathering tonight (very long...)

janet | Oct 19, 200301:34 AM

First, let me say that my opinions are mine, and mine alone. I would love to hear the opinions of the other hounds who were present...we were so busy swapping restaurant tips we never really talked about what we were eating...We also learned that we have differing opinions on several local restaurants, but hey, that's what makes life interesting, no?

Anyway, seven hounds and three chowpups gathered tonight at Kim Son on 2nd street in Reno. (Thanks Steve for organizing!). A good time was had by all! I can't begin to remember all the food we ate...someone should have been taking notes. Kim Son is largely Vietnamese, but has some Chinese dishes on the menu as well. We all just kind of ordered things and shared. One weird thing is that everything was brought out at once....appetizers, soup, and main courses.....which contributed to the sense I had that I really didn't know WHAT I was eating.....(It also made for a crowded table!)

Jerry (my husband) and I agreed that the Vietnamese salads (one was chicken, one seafood) were excellent; maybe the highlight of the entire meal. They had lots of cabbage in a vinegary dressing, with a kick to them...topped with cilantro, peanuts, other goodies. We also really enjoyed the beef pho (Steve did a great job of mixing it...I was watching him dump in LOTS of pepper and hot sauce and thinking it was too much for even my chili-loving palate...but it was perfect!). The spring rolls were good; could have had a bit more crunch. No matter, I love spring rolls. The chow fun was good as well. Steve T. ordered a beef dish (lemon beef?) that was very tasty as well; again, almost like a salad. What was that Steve? Sadly, they were out of bread, so no banh mi. I've had lunch at this restaurant before (ate the pho), and the banh mi I've seen at other tables looked good. Other dishes included a curried alligator, which I think Steve ordered just to try alligator. I didn't try it but he said the curry was kind of overwhelming, and that you really couldn't taste the meat. It looked to me like it was made with curry powder, so Jerry and I did our Indian snob thing and wouldn't eat it. Several of the other dishes looked good, but Jerry said he thought they were a little bland...maybe even Americanized.(I was too full to eat any more...filled up on pho and spring rolls). The funny thing is that Steve had his Chowhound passport but showed it only to us, not to the waitress....One thing we noticed: it needs a Hindi translation!!!

I think next time I eat at Kim Son I will concentrate on the salads and the pho...maybe try a banh mi. I could be perfectly happy with just that! Price-wise it was very reasonable.....For seven adults and three children, LOTS of food and a few beers and sodas the total with tax and a good tip was $125.

Anyway, it was great meeting everyone and finding some kindred souls to talk food with. Some very good information was shared, good food was eaten, and I must say the little ones were so quiet I hardly noticed they were there! We're going to try to get together again Saturday the 14th at Soochow in Sparks...Steve will try and get a special menu ordered. Be there or be square!

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