Five Vietnamese restaurants in Melbourne to try

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Melbourne is one of the coolest cities I’ve ever been to. Its CBD (Central Business District – downtown area) is full of intimate lanes and arcades, there are heaps of open areas to relax and in and it can be a hedonist’s dream come true. It’s also great for eating – the restaurants in Melbourne that are on can be determined by what part of the city you’re in, as each neighbourhood possesses their own characteristics.

If Chinese food is your thing, then head to Little Bourke St in Melbourne’s Chinatown. If it’s Italian food, Lygon St in Carlton is the place for you. But if you fancy a ‘pho’, and it’s Vietnamese food you’re in search of, Victoria St in Richmond is where you need to go.

1. Ha Long Bay, 82 Victoria Street, Richmond

Affordable, speedy and tasty – these are three adjectives that perfectly describe Ha Long Bay. Another is friendly. When I explained to the staff that I was researching for a travel website (they asked why I was writing into a notepad) they were that little bit more attentive, but not overly (they still charged me in case you were wondering). I had a ‘pho’ (Vietnamese soup) that was tasty and fresh. So much so that I returned before leaving Melbourne, which is always a good sign.

2. Tho Tho Bar and Restaurant, 66 Victoria Street, Richmond

If you’re not sure about whether or not Vietnamese food is up your street, check out Tho Tho Bar. As the name suggests, you can pop in for a drink as well as food, and they’ve got a well stocked bar full of domestic brews, imported ones, while they’ve got an impressive cocktail list too. If you fancy complimenting your refreshment with a nibble or two, try the crab claws stuffed with prawns that are scrumptious. The Vietnamese coleslaw is delightful too.

3. I Love Pho, 164 Victoria Street, Richmond

Before I dropped in here for a bowl of (you guessed it) pho, I kind of loved the place already due to the name. It’s presumptuous and arrogant, but not overly. The pho was fragrant making my slurps (it’s ok – there was nobody nearby) all the more enjoyable. I particularly love the concept here – they really do love ‘loving’ pho…the staff even wear t-shirts that say it.

file Photo courtesy of thatwelike

4. Co Do, 196 Victoria St, Richmond

I visited this restaurant to try one thing and one thing only – ‘bún bò hué’ – one a Vietnamese soup (yes…another one) with beef, noodles and cabbage. I’d been told to try the dish in this particular restaurant by two Melbournians and I wasn’t disappointed. It had just the perfect amount of kick to it, it was fragrant and the beef was cooked properly. A real find on a street teeming with Vietnamese restaurants.

5. Melbourne Vietnam Noodle House, 251 Swanston Street, Melbourne CBD

If you don’t want to have to make your way out to Richmond to try a bowl of Vietnamese soup, you don’t have to, thanks to this Vietnamese restaurant in the centre of the city. The pork noodle salad is delicious and light and a good option if you don’t fancy soup. The rice vermicelli is good too. Service sometimes isn’t as speedy as it should be, but this is only testament to its popularity.

Do you have a favourite restaurant in Melbourne, Vietnamese or otherwise? We'd love to hear from you.

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Main photo courtesy of Michael Coghlan under Creative Commons license.

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