Sherman's Food Adventures: Bonjour Vietnamese Bistro

Bonjour Vietnamese Bistro

While dining next door at Nammos Estiatorio, I was wondering when I could check out Bonjour Vietnamese.  I've seen it all over IG with its ornate decor with flowers everywhere as well as a modern approach with cocktails and a wine room.  So in my mind, I thought, "why wait?" and decided to bring the fam for dinner a few days later.  We didn't make any reservations but still scored a table at opening.  I took a peek at their rez list and there was indeed quite a few of them.  Best to make one if you intend on eating there.

We ended up getting a few appies to start including the Spicy Tamarind Wings.  These were firmly crunchy as there was a relatively thick batter on them.  However, it wasn't heavy nor unappealing.  The skin was well-rendered and the meat was still juicy and tender.  I found the tamarind glaze to be sweet and tangy with just a touch of spice.  There was just enough for impact without over-saturating the wings. 

Next appie was the standard Spring Rolls served in a bamboo weaved plate.  This reminded me somewhat of the presentation found at Anh & Chi.  Actually, the whole concept was very similar with the cocktails and elevated decor.  As for these spring rolls, I thought they were really good.  The wrapper was super crispy and light giving way to plenty of filling.  This, to me, has to be one of the best spring roll wrappers I've had in a long time.  As for the filing, it was moist and flavourful with meatiness, sweetness and umaminess from the fish sauce.  Served on the side was some lettuce and basil to wrap the spring rolls if you choose to.

Viv had the standard being the Phở Dặc Biệt with rare beef, beef brisket and beef shank.  This one was a more simplified version without tendon, tripe nor meatballs.  No matter as there was enough meat and it was plenty tender.  There was a modest amount of noodles which were al dente and not clumpy.  As for the soup, it was on the lighter side being clean and slightly sweet. Beyond that, we could still make out some of the other layers of flavours such as the licorice essence from the star anise.

For myself, I had the Bún Bò Huế with rare beef, beef brisket and beef meatballs.  Of course it is very rare to find a bowl of BBH in town with pig's blood and knuckle, so I'm going to give them a pass here.  Again, the meats involved were tender and decently portioned.  The broth was lemongrass forward being fragrant and flavourful.  There was some spice, but not heavily.  Not sure if they used shrimp paste in this version, but if they did, there was not much of it.  Overall, it was still enjoyable.

My daughter went for her favourite, the Phở Gà with grilled chicken rather than poached chicken. Broth was quite impactful and full of depth.  It was a good combination of savoury and natural sweetness.  The grilled chicken was nicely charred and flavourful.  This was a good bowl of noodles and broth.  So the food was pretty solid in general.  Of course we had to pay a premium given the decor, service, presentation and ambiance of the place.  We do appreciate the aforementioned factors when it comes to restaurants, so it was a good experience overall.

The Good:
- Solid eats
- Attentive service
- Snazzy decor

The Bad:
- You pay more for the elevated experience


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