This afternoon I’m fighting through a delirious food coma to bring news of a wonderful Vietnamese restaurant in my neighbourhood, ParisHanoi. As a street-long queue of eager diners snakes along rue Charonne, I feel like the tail end should be holding signs that read, “yes, it really is worth the wait!” It’s a snug fit, but this just adds to the lively bistro buzz, which is perfect for an evening date or lunch with the girls – as I did today.
With temperatures outside soaring to the 30˚C mark, I decided that a fresh bò bún (noodle salad) would be the perfect accompaniment to the October Indian summer. And it truly was.
Served in a colossal porcelain bowl, the Bò Bún Nem is a generous mound of crunchy lettuce, carrots, bean sprouts and cold rice vermicelli dressed in sweet sesame and soy. Add to this thick chunks of sautéd beef, crispy pork nems (spring rolls), peanuts and fresh coriander – the dish is bursting with flavour and all for just €10.50. In fact, nothing on the menu is over €12.
ParisHanoi doesn’t take reservations so it’s best to arrive early or be prepared to wait in line with torturous wafts of sizzling lemongrass chicken or fragrant chilli prawns. With so much on the menu still to try and nothing but a 5-minute stroll between the resto and my house, I fear that I might be headed towards a Hanoi overdose. It can’t be helped…addiction is a disease.
ParisHanoi – 74, rue de Charonne 75011 Paris * Métro: Charonne or Ledru-Rollin
- Starters: €5 and under
- Mains: €8-11
- Desserts: €5 and under
What’s playing today?
my favourite Miriam Makeba song, Kilimanjaro, covered by a great British band, the Noisettes.