The 2009 Philly Mag 50: Restaurants 26 to 50

39. Vietnam
39. Vietnam
China Town | Vietnamese | Entrées: $13-$20
Last Year’s Ranking: 28

Your unadventurous parents, your foodie friends, your kids … you can take anyone to Vietnam. And people do. This Chinatown standby with a distinctly un-Chinatown ambience (polished hardwoods, a modern decor) perennially has a 30-­minute weekend waitlist. That’s thanks to things like the behemoth BBQ platter—Vietnam’s equivalent of a greatest-hits album—packed with grape leaves, lettuce-wrap fixin’s and savory grilled meatballs. It’s also thanks to aromatic broths, searing curries, and saucy pan-fried noodles. Flavors here always shine, even in the $6 dishes. (Indeed, the least-fancy food is generally the best.) Order: Wait upstairs at Bar Saigon and get the embarrassingly ostentatious Flaming Volcano cocktail for two. (It’s delicious, we swear.)221 North 11th Street, 215-592-1163.

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