Two pieces of crispy delicious deep-fried spring rolls. Those were my cravings last Thursday after my husband and mine’s Naturopathic In-Office Package Tests. We left the clinic way past our usual early dinner time so by the time we arrived at Royal Oak, we felt our stomachs growling in anticipation of anything to eat.
It was my husband’s suggestion to try A Taste of Saigon to try a different Vietnamese restaurant besides our usual Pho Hoa option. At first, I wanted to order soup-based dish for the cold weather but after looking at the restaurant’s menu, I opted to try something else especially after seeing the shrimp skewer option. It seems to be I’ve been having a lot of seafood cravings lately.
My first impression of A Taste of Saigon is its subdued harmony of Asian and modern feel. Although the name is glaringly Asian, the place doesn’t pose as much Asian atmosphere as what I am used to in similar restaurants. You know, the super-noisy kind you can’t always hear yourself talk. It maybe because we came at dinner time but I like how subdued the noise level is compared to other Asian restaurants.
Large Asian (diety?) statues greet you at the entrance, pretty Asian lanterns light up the premises, and other Asian decoration completes the ensemble. The counter area displays bright contemporary shelvings where a lot of differently shaped glasses, decanter, bottles, tea steepers are displayed. There are also two large flat screen TVs wherein the sports channel was on.
As I expected from many Asian restaurants, their menu is full of options to browse through. Plus they also offer an impressive list of beverages, inclusive of wines, sakes, juices, fizz drinks, teas, slushies and more. I was highly tempted to get some alcohol but for the sake of improving my health first, I opted for some caffeine-free root beer.
It was first for me to consciously notice Vietnamese rice and I like it! Just the right texture and portion for the generous amount of Shrimp Skewers on my plate. I know I’ve been ranting of large restaurant portions here in Calgary compared to my homeland (not that I’m complaining but I easily get full!) but the portions in this restaurant are just right for me.
I like Taste of Saigon for its ambiance and dishes. I also like the service although my husband and I noticed that our server didn’t seem trained enough for the job. I requested a spoon for my husband because he is not that used to using chopsticks for vermicelli. Our server just laid the spoon on the table. Didn’t plate it on top of a napkin or something. It’s a negligible error is what we thought but well, it’s common sense hygiene.
There you go, another well-discovered Asian restaurant to add to our list of casual Asian dinner dates.
A Taste of Saigon
#406, 8888 Country Hills Blvd NW
Calgary, AB T3G 5T4
Mon. 11:00 am-10:00 pm
Wed.-Thurs. 11:00 am-10:00 pm
Fri.-Sat. 11:00 am-11:00 pm
Sun. 11:00 am-9:30 pm