This week, Jonah and I were itching for happy hour. The sun was shining, and we both had finished up a day’s work by 5 o’clock. Because we both have a passion for any kind of Asian food, we decided to go to Fish Sauce, a little Vietnamese restaurant on a quiet corner in NW Portland. We had been once before a long time ago, and quite enjoyed ourselves. So I met Jonah there, and was pleasantly surprised to find that they have a lovely patio where we could sit outside.
First we ordered drinks: Jonah started with an IPA, while I went the cocktail route with the Bangkok Dangerous, made with rye, thai tea, lemon, and demerera sugar. Because we were so hungry, we immediately ordered the crispy pork roll, which was fairly standard Vietnamese fare.
After that we ordered some grilled mussels, topped with coconut milk, toasted coconut, and peanuts, which were pretty unique and very good. We also ordered the grilled romaine with dressing and grilled tofu. I liked this dish – it was crunchy and refreshing – but I do wish there had been a little more dressing. Next up were some fantastic chicken wings (which were eaten so quickly that I couldn’t nab a picture). They were crispy and not drenched in sauce, while still being a little bit sticky and sweet.
After those small plates, we were still a little hungry so we decided to order the Bún, a big bowl of vermicelli noodles with lettuce, cucumber, pickled daikon and carrots, mint, topped with a crispy roll, grilled shrimp, grilled beef, and of course there was a little bowl of sauce to pour over the whole dish. This dish was light, sweet, crunchy, and fresh, and is one of our favorite things to order since our trip to Vietnam last year.
The service at Fish Sauce was extremely friendly, and I love both the patio and the long communal table inside. This place feels like a great combination of a neighborhood spot, a best kept secret, and a tasty hip Portland restaurant.