Le Soleil [SF, inner richmond]

Had dinner with my P2 this evening at Le Soleil, this a local Vietnamese restaurant with a broad but not too long menu. It’s located next to B Star but is usually much less busy.

We’d previously ordered takeout a few months ago to pretty good success - a tasty tomato-based oxtail stew, light but flavorful chicken pho, forgettable papaya salad, and bright young lotus root salad.

Tonight we sat outside and had soup – it was pretty chilly, and though they have a couple of heaters, their effects did not extend into the outdoor shelter covering the tables.

Our dinner was excellent: a deeply spiced beef pho ($14), featuring chewy rice noodles, tender rare beef slices, and bouncy + spiced beef meatballs. The broth was light and rich, and my partner finished the whole bowl (a rarity enabled by the soup not being too salty).

I had the fish dumpling soup ($16), which had a light but rich fish broth that wasn’t fish-y, a large chunk of stewed beef, chewy thin egg noodles, shrimp cake strands, and excellent bouncy fish dumplings (of which there were at least 8) – I didn’t leave anything in my bowl, either.

Service was kind and attentive, and the little slice of lemon in our glasses of hot water was a nice touch on a chilly evening.

The hours are a bit spotty, but I recommend this restaurant to anyone looking for an effective, clean flavored take on classic Vietnamese fare. If you’re looking for something a little more unusual, Lily (a block or two down Clement) is also pretty great.

Thought about taking pictures but got distracted by food :blush:. They do have a wall of pictures of dishes posted on their front windows, and the pictures are honest.


Monday, Thursday
12:00pm - 3:00pm
Friday, Saturday
12:00pm - 8:00pm

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold