Viet Hoa, one of the original functional-yet-fashionable Vietnamese canteens on Shoreditch’s Pho Mile, has been given the ‘concept’ treatment by a trendy design studio. It’s now touted as a café that starts with banh-mi baguettes for lunch with coffee & Wi-Fi, & ends over snazzy cocktails in the funky downstairs bar. That’s as maybe, but behind the minimalist brushed metal & natural wood facade, it’s still the same old Viet Hoa doling out cheap noodles & sometimes-snappish service. The venue has lost an element of ‘period piece’ charm along the way, but its fashionable fan base has, for the most part, stuck with it. Sizzling squid with spring onions, goi buoi salad with pomelo & prawns, & bun bi (noodles with spring rolls & shredded pork skin) should all do you well alongside an ice-cold Tsingtao beer from an indifferent drinks list.
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