First taste of Vietnamese noodles
Vermicelli, pan-fried egg noodles, pan-fried rice noodles, Pho soups with noodles … basically, I’ve come to the conclusion that Vietnamese cuisine involves a lot of noodles. And that is a cuisine I can get behind.
I recently ate my first Vietnamese meal. It also was my inaugural visit to Lotus Vietnamese Grill & Noodles, a chic restaurant in Arlington’s Village at Shirlington. Vietnamese is a great addition to Shirlington, which already offered diners tastes of Asia at Ping and T.H.A.I. in Shirlington. It’s a diverse area for dining with Mexican, Lebanese and Indian restaurants. And for drinking with an Irish pub, a classy wine bar/cheese shop/restaurant, a sports bar and a local brewery.
While doing a little post-meal research, I’ve learned that Vietnamese is one of the healthiest cuisines worldwide. Vietnamese dishes are made with fresh ingredients like fruits and veggies. The Lotus menu has a section just for its vegetarian dishes, and there even is a full four-course vegetarian pre-fixe option.
But, it’s probably not so healthy when you order pan-fried noodles like my dining companions and I did. My friend Stefanie ordered the pan-fried rice noodles, which were large — unlike a rice noodle in Pad Thai — and soft. My roomie Amanda and I ordered the pan-fried egg noodles, and we got them crispy. My noodles had veggies. Amanda’s had chicken. Both of us were delighted with our choices.
Would I go back to Lotus? In a word: Yes. The food tasted delicious, and the service was informative and attentive.
But, there are some kinks and room for improvement at the new(ish) restaurant. As someone new to Vietnamese cuisine, it would have been helpful if the menu offered more explanation of the dishes. Luckily, our waitress was more than willing to answer our questions.
Menu: Vietnamese noodle dishes, soups, salads, vegetarian options
Drink list: Wine and cocktails, including a lychee martini
Location: 4041 Campbell Ave., Arlington, VA 22206
Wish you were here,