Located at the center of Lakeland’s Lakeside Village is Saigon Bistro, a casual Vietnamese restaurant that introduces patrons to an unfamiliar cuisine.
Owners Kim and Hung Huynh have overcome numerous obstacles, to open a restaurant that highlights the enticing flavors of their homeland. Inside, the walls are decorated with black and white family photos featuring their four sons. These personal touches welcome customers and help to create a casual yet elegant atmosphere.
When it comes to the menu, there is a variety of flavors represented. Everyone I have spoken with has their own favorite dish at Saigon Bistro, which speaks to the strength of their menu. However, after my informal survey, these are their three agreed upon “must-haves”: the Crispy Spring Rolls appetizer, Huynh’s Favorite Dish entrée and their version of a traditional Vietnamese Pho.
An order of two Crispy Spring Rolls is the perfect way to start a meal at Saigon. I recommend using the salsa style Sriracha, which is placed on every table, as a dipping sauce that adds a little kick to the fresh ingredients inside.
Named after the owners, Huynh’s Favorite Dish is one of my personal favorites. This dish comes with a choice of meat, marinated and sautéed with onions and scallions in a mild or spicy house sauce – served with rice and vegetables. Huynh’s Favorite Dish is a safe bet for those who are new to Vietnamese food.
The Pho Noodle Soup is widely popular for Saigon. Their Pho is served with a choice of meat or vegetable topped with scallion, onion and cilantro in an herbal broth. These oversized bowls are accompanied by fresh ingredients such as bean sprouts, fresh basil and jalapeno peppers.
Saigon Bistro is located at 1554 Town Center Drive West in Lakeland and is open Monday - Thursday from 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., Friday – Saturday from 11:00 a.m. – 9:30 p.m., and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m., perfect for lunch or dinner.