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Vien Dong Supermarket 4
5382 University Avenue, Rolando
(619) 583-3838

Your eyes are swimming: you're surrounded by fish looking out at you while schooling in their tanks, waiting to be chosen for your dinner. This supermarket has grown with the fortunes of the Tran family, who escaped from Vietnam in 1979. Now it's a window on what the rest of us burger-addicts are missing. Vien Dong ("Far East") hits you with new gastronomic possibilities. How many of these have you bought at your local supermarket recently? -- skatewing; parrot fish; live tilapia; live catfish; pig's ears; pig's blood; duck eggs; duck's feet; balut (egg with half-developed chick inside); durian (huge, prickly, smelly-but-tasty fruit from Thailand); frozen milky-fleshed markok fruit; Beer Lao, from Vientiane, Laos; and basil-seed drink with honey, which looks like skeins of tadpole eggs, but good for cooling your intestines and delicious! Come weekends, people set up stalls outside and squash sugarcane into drinks and cook Asian delicacies.

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