Delicious Vietnamese

Tel Aviv’s Vong restaurant serves a unique blend of flavors, textures and all around satisfying food

Vong Vietnamese restaurant in Tel Aviv (photo credit: BOAZ LAVI)
Vong Vietnamese restaurant in Tel Aviv
(photo credit: BOAZ LAVI)
Vong has been open for almost 10 years and is one of the hot spots on Tel Aviv’s Rothschild Boulevard. Lacking any pretension, this Vietnamese restaurant embodies everything one could ask for in a go-to spot: creative and well-crafted cocktails, a diverse and well-executed menu, friendly service and a chill vibe. There is seating inside, but the restaurant’s large outside area overlooking the boulevard is by far the favored spot.
To begin with, we perused the cocktail menu. We tried the cucumber margarita and the Vietnamese style mojito (NIS 39 each). Both were adeptly mixed and expertly presented. It took all my restraint not to gulp down the delicious drinks.
We began our culinary journey with the Goi-Ga salad (NIS 49), which consisted of slices of shredded chicken breast served on a bed of thin strips of cabbage, mint, red onion, coriander and chili in a ginger, lime and garlic sauce. The salad had so many different flavors and textures that blended very well together – sweet, spicy and refreshing all at once.
This was followed by the steamed butternut squash in coconut-peanut sauce (NIS 54). The butternut was deliciously slow-cooked and tender. This went very well with the side dish of sticky rice, which soaked up all the yummy sauce.
Next up was the beef banh (NIS 48) served with scallion, chili, coriander and Asian aioli dressing. Easily one of the better steamed buns I’ve eaten, the outside was fluffy, while the inside was more savory vs. sweet, with just the right amounts of fat and moisture, and beef that was tender, flavorful and lightly seasoned.
After a bit of a breather and some more cocktails, it was onto mains. We began with the Bo Rice (NIS 64) which consisted of strips of beef fillet with onions, dry red pepper and hot green pepper in an oyster sauce. The beef was not overcooked nor tough and was very tender and soft.  It was also marinated well. The vegetables filled the dish with bright color and flavor. Beware though: this dish is really spicy. Like really, really spicy. Don’t forget to ask for medium spicy if you don’t have bulletproof taste buds!
This was followed by the Viet Coco (NIS 58) with chicken (one can order it with seafood). The chicken was very tender, while the egg noodles were a perfect chewy al dente and stir-fried to perfection. The spices and sauces were delicious, and I liked that there was a large mound of green onions and roasted peanuts on the side. I appreciate a dish that lets the ingredients speak for themselves rather than assault you with an excess of sugar and spice.
For dessert, we shared the caramel glazed bananas with a side of yogurt, honey and slivered almonds. This dessert packed just the right combination of soft and crunchy, perfectly ripe and sweet, and warm and cold goodness that we still can’t stop talking about.
If you’re looking for a unique blend of flavors, interesting textures and all around delicious and satisfying food, look no further than Vong. It’s always overflowing with people, but the hype is well deserved.
The writer was a guest of the restaurant
Not Kosher
15 Rothschild Boulevard
(03)  633-7171