Best Vietnamese Restaurant

Binh Minh Quan

One of Chinatown’s best restaurants, the Vietnamese joint Binh Minh
Quan, doesn’t look very impressive from the outside, but inside you’ll
see that the owners have done a nice job decorating, from the water
buffalo figurines at the entrance to the earth-toned walls. They have
your standard Vietnamese fare: claypots, pho, and cold
vermicelli soups (try the bun rieu). Or, on a special occasion,
order the roasted catfish; the dish takes a while to cook so expect to
nosh on some appetizers first, or call ahead to put in an order. The
roasted catfish is not for the squeamish: A whole catfish, head and
all, comes out on a tray along with greens, herbs, and rice paper. The
dish warrants a demonstration for first-timers: You dip the rice paper
in warm water and gather pieces of fish, herbs, cucumber, lettuce, and
marinated vegetables and wrap them all up into a spring roll. Dip in
your favorite sauce, and you’ve got a meal to call home about.

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