Saturday, March 26, 2016

Pho Please - Restaurant Review

We tried ordering from Hao-Q tonight, but they were closed for the Easter weekend to spend time with their family! Such a bummer, but no problem since I've been wanting to try a new pho restaurant on Riverside.

We ordered our usual, chicken bún and chicken pho. The chicken pho was nice - clear broth, white meat, rice noodles, cilantro, red onion, bean sprouts, basil, lime, and jalapeño. The chicken pho was fine, although they only offered dark meat and wouldn't allow a substitution of white meat. The flavors were nice, and the food tasted fresh. We would definitely order from them again.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Hao-Q Asian Kitchen - Restaurant Review

Pho Ga: Vietnamese Chicken Noodle Soup

We just discovered the fabulous bún (Vietnamese noodle soup) and pho (Vietnamese vermicelli) that this restaurant serves. The ingredients are fresh and clean, and the flavors are clear and wonderful! My husband prefers white meat to dark meat when it comes to chicken, and Hao-Q only uses breast meat when serving chicken. The chicken bún came with all of the usual veggies (bean sprouts) and herbs (cilantro, basil, slice of lime, slice of jalapeño). The chicken pho came with hot sauce in addition to the usual fish sauce.

The restaurant is easy to access for take out - it's located on Far West west of Mopac. Perfect!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Gardner - Restaurant Review

Gardner is located on East 6th. It has plenty of parking and is easy to access. The exterior is beautiful with lots of gorgeous flora and foliage. Bon Appétit named it as one of America's 50 Best New Restaurants in 2015. Since we visited in early March, the restaurant has closed. However, I'm still posting this review because Gardner lives on in its new incarnation, Chicon, and the staff, service, and quality remain among the best in Austin.

The interior is clean and crisp with straight lines and lots of light-colored wood. The feeling is warm and inviting. The service is impeccable.

We went for our anniversary, and were greeted with glasses of bubbly.

We also ordered a nice Grenache to go with our meal.

The crispy sweet potatoes were wonderful and not greasy at all.

The Brussels sprouts were great - not burnt like some restaurants make them.

We both ordered the duck breast for our dinner entrées. The dish took 25 minutes to make, and when it arrived it was absolutely perfect. The duck skin was so crisp and light, while the meat was tender and pink.

The total for our dinner, which included several small plates and a dinner entrée each plus a bottle of wine, was $150 including tip.

I miss Gardner. I liked the menu better than I like the current menu at Chicon. Chicon still provides a delightful dinner experience for about the same price.

Review originally written March 2, 2016 and updated April 15, 2016.