Monday, January 25, 2016

Kinh Do

We're still recovering from this weekend's blizzard here in NYC, which means we're daydreaming about escapes to warmer places, like our Vegas trip from exactly 2 years ago. When we last recapped this trip, we had finished off a tasty Mexican lunch and were on our way to Hoover Dam, where we ended up spending most of the late afternoon, and Lake Mead, where we watched the sun set. It was a pretty great afternoon. After we drove back to Vegas, we stopped by the Silverton Casino to see the aquarium and then started thinking about what to get for dinner. We were kind of in the mood for pho, so we headed over to Kinh Do on Spring Mountain Road (the Chinatown area).

We started off with the nem nuong cuon (2 rolls cut in 2 pieces each), which were described on the menu as "charbroiled pork patty rolls with noodle and vegetables." This intrigued us, as we had never had anything like it before, and it was awesome. The pork patty looked a bit like breakfast sausage when we first saw it, but it didn't taste anything like it. We couldn't identify the spices that were used to season the pork patty, but the flavor was so good. Inside the roll with the pork patty was some vermicelli and lettuce, and the entire roll tasted so fresh.

After we ordered, we noticed that if we checked in on Yelp, we would be able to get free spring rolls (egg rolls on their menu). A was a little hesitant since we had already ordered, but M loves cha gio and really wanted to try them, so we checked in and asked for the special (which they had no problem honoring even though we had already ordered). A normal order of cha gio came with 4 pieces, but we got 2 rolls for checking in. No complaints from us. We just wanted to try them and we were so glad we did.

The rolls came with a plate of lettuce, mint, cucumber, and carrot/radish pickled salad, and we were pretty happy to see that. We love eating cha gio with all those fresh vegetables. It's always sad when you order cha gio at a restaurant and you don't get all the accompaniments.

These spring rolls were so good, and the flavor put these among the best we've had. The outside of the rolls were crisp (without the flakiness of some Chinese egg rolls), and wrapped up with all the vegetables, they were so tasty. We were so glad we took the opportunity to get these.

We both decided on pho for our entree, so they brought out a big plate of bean sprouts, basil, and lime for us to share. It was about the same amount as we've gotten at other pho places and it all looked very fresh.

A got the beef combination pho which contained every cut of beef they offered: rare steak, flank steak, tendon, tripe, and beef balls. The broth was fragrant and rich, but not quite as flavorful or rich as the broth from Tank. The one really good thing about this pho was that it was loaded with meat and onions. It seemed like beef was pouring out of everywhere, and A kept discovering more and more tendon as he dug through. It was a treasure trove of tendon, and A was so happy to partake.

M got the pho ga (chicken pho). The broth here tasted the same as what A got in his beef pho, but she was okay with that since the broth was good. The chicken pieces were generally moist, but a few were a little bit dry. Overall, the flavor of the pho was generally good, not Tank level good, but very fresh and clean tasting.

We were pretty happy with our Kinh Do dinner and the fact that we were able to get a tasty and very affordable meal off the Strip. On our previous Vegas trip (which we were pretty bad at recapping, more on that soon), we ate almost all of our meals on the Strip, with the exception of one Thai dinner at Lotus of Siam. This time we rented a car, which gave us the ability to branch out and try new places like Kinh Do instead of sticking to all the restaurants at hotels on the Strip. That was great, but one bad part about thinking back on this dinner today is that we could really go for some pho right now after a long weekend of snow shoveling, and we can't get any!

Kinh Do is located at 4300 Spring Mountain Road, Las Vegas.

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