Driving down Howe Ave. on Friday night around 8:30 p.m. I spotted a new Vietnamese Pho place, Saigon Bay, and minutes later became hungry. After a U-turn and a return to the restaurant, I entered and was astonished by improbable garishness of the interior, but the place had this certain for-real vibe to it. I was seated and soon found on the menu what I was looking for: Bun, that's rice noodles without soup.
I ordered the simplest: Bun Ga Nuong Xa Cha Gio (pardon the lack of diacriticals), cold rice noodles topped with grilled lemon grass chicken, a small fried Cha Gio roll, and raw lettuce, carrots, other vegetables and aromatic leaves. $5.95.
It was superb, particularly the hot-off-the grill chicken nestled in raw vegetables atop the generous portion of rice noodles. Pure heaven at fast-food prices. I was pleased, and left $8 total.
Service was good and attentive (though this was not a complicated meal) and I will be certain to return for dinner soon.
Sign says they've been open since October of last year.
1407 Howe Ave.
Open 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, to 9:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.