[Northenden, Manchester] Viet Guy

I lived my first eleven years of my life in Northenden but more than half a century later, it’s rare that we even drive through, let alone actually stop and walk along the main drag. Back in the day, It was a vibrant shopping centre but now it’s all pound shops and seedy looking takeaways, etc. So, it was with some surprise to see that it now has two Vietnamese restaurants. We’ve been to the other one and it was OK so, as it was just about lunchtime, we thought we’d give this one a try.

There’s a bargain lunchtime menu – nine quid for two courses from a reasonably extensive menu. That runs alongside the main “carte”, which provided a plain papaya salad for one of us (you can have it with added protein). It was light and fresh with just a hint of chilli, lots of herbs, fried onions and a scattering of crispy noodles.

Summer rolls, with slices of tofu, came from the lunch menu. A good version to my mind with a balance between the vermicelli, herbs, etc. And an OK peanut sauce that could have done with perking up a bit with something – chilli, soy, something.
I’ve eaten Vietnamese food on a few occasions but have never tasted pho before. It was time to establish my foody credentials. It’s a lovely bowl of light (but very flavoursome) soup with lots of noodles and the protein of your choice (in this case, rare beef). Served separately for the diner to add as they wish – crunchy beansprouts, slices of red chilli, mint, coriander and lemon.

We are not Vietnamese so have no idea how authentic or traditional the food might be. And, frankly, we don’t care. We do care if the food is tasty and the experience enjoyable. It was on both counts – good lunch, with good service. We might think about coming back for dinner