Quantcast
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Finding an available parking meter in the heart of Hillcrest is like finding a stiletto in Ocean Beach. Fortunately, there's a parking lot few people know of beneath Saigon on Fifth, which is accessed off of Fifth Avenue (despite the signage and main entrance to the restaurant, which is on University, equidistant between 5th and 4th). The sign at the entrance to the garage implies you will be charged to park within, but the restaurant validates your parking ticket -- so as long as you're just there for a meal, you get a guaranteed parking spot without having to dig for change.

Because of long work hours at home while David was too sick to cook (my poor man succumbed to a variety of the colds that have been going around) I've been using the Restaurant Connection to deliver Saigon on Fifth's fare directly to my place for dinner. When he was suffering from a stomach bug, chicken pho was the only thing David was interested in eating.

I hadn't physically been to the restaurant in many months, mostly because I'd forgotten about how easy it could be to park underneath. So, because we'd been stuck working at my place all morning, when my sister Jane and I lifted our heads in hunger, I suggested we get out of the house, away from our papers and laptops, and dine in at Saigon on Fifth.

It is at Saigon (I'm losing the "on Fifth" from here on out, you should know which one I'm talking about by now) that I find my favorite fresh spring rolls -- mostly because I don't have to specify "no cilantro," they're already prepared with just the lettuce and a bit of mint. Jane's a vegetarian, so when I dine with her, we get the tofu version. It's simple, fresh, and tasty, but I prefer the traditional version with a thin slice of pork and shrimp.

Image

Jane ordered the yellow curry with tofu. Her lunch came with a clear-broth soup and a salad topped with pickled ginger. Unlike the yellow curry at a traditional Thai restaurant, such as Amarin, which is a favorite of ours, the yellow curry at Saigon is more of a brown color. Flavor-wise, it seems to have more of a sweeter spiciness to it than the lighter yellow versions.

Image

Image

Image

I've been getting the same thing for a while now -- the dumpling soup. I love this soup, because there's no oil in the broth -- it's light and clear, and leaves me feeling energetic and satisfied rather than weighed down and stuffed, as oilier broths tend to do. I add a little chili sauce for spice (I prefer most things with a kick), but aside from that, I simply enjoy the fresh and natural flavors of veggies (such as broccoli) and lean proteins, chicken and shrimp. The pasta envelopes (dumplings) are thin but not overcooked, and filled with a small chunk of the same chicken that is in the soup.

Image

I'd been accustomed to pouring the soup out of a Styrofoam cup, so it was nice to enjoy it directly out of the hot iron pot. At least, I think it was iron. I'm more of a foodie than a metallurgist. All I know for sure is that the stuff inside of it tasted damn good.

More like this:

Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Art Reviews — W.S. Di Piero's eye on exhibits Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Best Buys — San Diego shopping Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits City Lights — News and politics Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Famous Former Neighbors — Next-door celebs Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Here's the Deal — Chad Deal's watering holes Just Announced — The scoop on shows Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Of Note — Concert picks Out & About — What's Happening Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Pour Over — Grab a cup Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer News — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Set 'em Up Joe — Bartenders' drink recipes Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Sports — Athletics without gush Street Style — San Diego streets have style Suit Up — Fashion tips for dudes Theater Reviews — Local productions Theater antireviews — Narrow your search Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Waterfront — All things ocean Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close