I finally got to experience what many of my blogger friends are talking about...the good food of Saigon Cafe, albeit an abbreviated one. Together with two co-workers, I decided to go for the Pho Bo Friday Special last April 26. As I wrote in my previous post, the location of the place and the time were mainly the reasons why I did not go with my blogger friends when they checked out the place. Surprisingly, although out of my usual way, the place was not hard to find. From Pepsi, all I did was to go straight ahead, then turned left into the Marapara road (you can see the sign: Bacolod Golf and Country Club), then again going straight and turned left in the first corner I saw (thank you Glady of Experience Negros for pointing out that it was in the street right after Marapara Golf). But it was in this narrow street that I got a little lost since I was looking for a big sign. Asking around, I was pointed in the direction of a house with a bamboo fence. As we approached the open gate, Sylvia Gerangue, Chef of Saigon Cafe was there to welcome us. Although quite early (5:30 PM) some people were already there ahead of us and I knew one of them! The place was simple and homey, but with a great zen-like atmosphere. The owners had really maximized what limited space they had and even decorated one wall with a bamboo mural to give it a more authentic ambience.
|photo retrieved from their Facebook page|
Reading my friends reviews, I already knew that I should order the smaller bowl of Beef Pho Bo because not being a big noodle eater, I don't think I can finish a big one.
Pho is a Vietnamese dish consisting of broth, noodles made from rice, a few herbs, and meat. The two main varieties are chicken pho and beef pho. There is also Saigon-style pho (sweetened) and Hanoi-style pho (no sugar). The word "pho" may be derived from French pot-au-feu (beef stew). (Source: Wikipedia)The beef was really tender and surprisingly, even when the soup was no longer steaming hot, there was very little oil...almost unnoticed to the tastebuds. My two companions who were not bloggers thoroughly enjoyed the meal and asked about the type of noodle used, which were wide and thick compared to the ones locally available. I found out from Sylvia that these were made from rice and ordered straight from Vietnam. No wonder they were so filling and tasted a bit like our rice cakes (puto). The condiments like the soy sauce, chili sauce and bean sauce were also sourced from Vietnam. The names reminded me of my favorite liniment, also made in Vietnam...LOL! We also ordered their much talked about coffee. The coffee was brewed but the condensed milk offset the strong taste. After the coffee stopped dripping, we mixed it well with the milk and then placed it in a tall glass with lots of ice cubes. It was really good but I wonder how much sugar I digested from that one glass!
Everything was yummy, to say the least. I am really looking forward to the opening of their new restaurant near Riverside Medical Center in June since I want to try their other Vietnamese specialties. And so, tạm biệt, thời gian tới lại, Saigon Cafe!
Because of the limited space, it would be best to call and make reservations. Landline-
How to get there:
|retrieved from their Facebook page|