It was with great trepidation that I sat down at a table at Saigon de Pho, a new Vietnamese restaurant in the Santa Ana Mainplace mall. It had all the hallmarks of a mistake in the making: the location in a mall so soulless that it could literally be in any city in America; the fancy décor with the wall of running water; the IKEA-chic tables and chairs; the American-style service.
Dave Lieberman Decent Vietnamese inside a mall? Are you phở-king kidding me?
I very nearly abandoned the effort to attempt it; I had already composed a snarky introduction to this place, this soup den in the extremely non-Asian wolf's lair.More »