I found myself in East London on a Saturday, as I had booked to do a photography course just off of Hackney Road. So when we broke for lunch with the instruction to be back in 45 minutes I knew that gave me just enough time to slip out for some Vietnamese food.
Kingsland Road is well known for it’s Vietnamese community, with a great choice of restaurants. Because I had such a short amount of time, I went into the first place I found that looked good and only afterwards I realised it was actually part of the same company that own the fantastic Cây Tre restaurant round the corner. It turned out to be a good choice.
Viet Grill is quite a large space and I was just a little sad that it was lunchtime and I had a class that afternoon so I couldn’t sample one of the delicious sounding cocktails. I ordered from the Express menu for speed and didn’t have to wait long for my vegetable spring rolls and Classic Beef Pho to arrive. The soup is made with a 24-hour cooked marrow bone stock and is filled with steak and brisket beef, along with silky noodles and herbs and onions. The broth was good – rich and flavoursome and the soup was filling. The beef was tender, and the mixture of the two types of meat made for interesting textures. I always have hoisin sauce with my Pho, and I learned a fact from the menu that I didn’t know before. Apparently only people from the south of Vietnam use hoisin, in the north they have chilli sauce to accompany the soup.
A good, fast lunchtime soup and perfect for filling up with on a cold day.
Words and pictures by LadyLavish