Since today is Father’s Day, I thought I’d write about a something my dad introduced me to a long time ago – Vietnamese food. He spent a bit of time in Southeast Asia and whenever we try a new Vietnamese restaurant, we like to have him along, as a barometer of sorts, to tell us what he thinks of the cooking and whether or not it’s really authentic.
My parents actually tried Le Mekong Vietnamese Cuisine before I did and loved it. My dad is not one to rave, so that was a pretty good clue that I should check it out. The space has been a number of different incarnations of various Asian restaurants (most recently Ginger) it was just taken over by new owners who have reinvented it as Le Mekong. The two new owners – Tham Huynh and Khanh Nguyen – were both born and raised in south Vietnam and left the country over 30 years ago. Their nostalgia for the flavors of their home inspired them to open Le Mekong to bring those flavors to their new home in Johns Creek.
My dish was the Rice with Tofu and Vegetables in a Clay Pot (pictured, top). It was a mild dish with delicate flavors served piping hot in the clay pot it was cooked in – really pretty presentation and fresh vegetables (the broccoli still had a bit of crunch to it). My hubby tried the Grilled Pork and Shrimp over Vermicelli with Egg Roll (pictured, bottom). Of course, I had to steal a bite (or two) of his pork – it was really tender and tasty.
The owners and staff are friendly and will walk you through the menu, if you need it, and are happy chat with you about their restaurant, which is clearly their passion. Tasteful modern decor is paired with a few understated, Asian-inspired touches to make the restaurant comfortable and inviting. (The only negative was the music – the stereotypical, synthesized pan-pipe renditions of pop songs and classics. We pointed this out to the owner, who said he’d consider changing it.) But even the uninspired music selections could not take away from the face that the food was delicious, so if you’re looking to try a new Vietnamese restaurant, I think you should check out Le Mekong!