Góc Ha Noi Corner, a northern Vietnamese restaurant from Ha Noi natives in Garden Grove, debuted to end 2016. The corner space north of the 22 freeway features a stone facade, brick wallpaper, cushioned black booths and banquettes, and a giant gold toad by the register.
The restaurant celebrates the joys of corn milk, but food is the primary reason to visit Góc Ha Noi Corner. Bun cha Ha Noi was one of my favorite dishes from my trip to Ha Noi, pairing rice vermicelli with grilled pork slices and patties. The versions I’ve found in the United States haven’t been as elaborate (or flavorful), but I did like the variation at Góc Ha Noi Corner, called banh cuon thit cha nuong Ha Noi ($8.50). In this case, steamed rice paper sheets replaced bun. The rice paper was too thick, and I’d be surprised if they make their banh cuon in-house, but I still enjoyed the juicy charred pork, which bobbed in a savory blend of fish sauce, vinegar, sugar, and chiles with crunchy tiles of carrot and green papaya. My order came with a heap of fresh herbs and lettuce, in case you prefer to form wraps.
Dose of Vitamin P spotlights my favorite pork dish from the previous week.