Essence of Saigon Garden

I haven’t been to Essence of Saigon Garden for a really long time because my sister is a huge fan of Vietnamese Beef Stew Noodle House in the same strip mall area. The place was full today (not hard at all considering there are only 4 tables!) so my family decided to give Essence of Saigon Garden a try. We had gone walking/running at Edworthy Park and were famished!

I remember eating here a lot in high school and always ordering the XL-sized pho because each size was only 50 cents more than the previous one!  I’m not sure if the management has changed but the menu has for sure. The pho noodle soups only come in regular and large now. Well, enough reminiscing and onto the food!

Guava Juice $2.50image
Refreshing and slightly pulpy! This was so welcoming after running for an hour in the sun. 

Saigon Spring Rolls (4 rolls total, my mom ate one super quickly!)imageThese came out piping hot! The outside was crispy and not greasy at all. Good amount of filling too.

Essence of Saigon Garden Special Pho (large size)image
My dad got this one. Toward the end of this meal he commented on how much meat was still remaining, which is always a good thing!  (This shows that Essence of Saigon Garden doesn’t just increase the amount of noodles for the large size like some restaurants do.)

Sliced Rare Beef and Tendon Pho (regular size)image

I didn’t really like the soup base in the beginning but it slowly grew on me. It tasted different from the clearer pho broths and reminded me a bit of Chinese beef noodle soups. There were many slices of beef and tendon which were delicious. I used to be really scared of beef fat and tendon as a kid but I guess their chewy texture is an acquired taste.

Does anybody else find that their taste buds are changing with age? Other items that I wouldn’t even touch before include bitter melon, eggplant, and brussel sprouts. I love them all now! Even my sense of smell seems to be changing, I could NOT stand the smell of lavender and rose water up into my late teens. Just goes to show, you should never say never to anything. So… where’s the best beef tendon dish in Calgary? :D

Essence of Saigon Garden
3604 52 Ave NW
(403) 210-4909
Essence of Saigon Garden on Urbanspoon

Tags: Vietnamese yyc