Yen for Viet

296 Illawarra Rd Marrickville, NSW 2204

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Opening hours Sat-Sun 11.30am-2.30pm,Tues-Sun 5.30pm-9.30pm
Features Wheelchair access, Family friendly, Outdoor seating, BYO, Vegetarian friendly
Prices Moderate (mains $20-$40)
Chef Le & Yen Nguyen
Seats 45
Payments AMEX, Visa, Mastercard, eftpos
Phone 02 9558 2819

It mightn't be quite Crown Street, Surry Hills but this stretch of Illawarra Road is getting a bit chichi. This sleek red room with simple monochrome posters is characteristic of the move away from tiles, mirrors and laminates, and the food's a step up too. Rice-paper rolls are stretchy and well packed with pork and prawn, while eggplant fritters with their crisp, dry carapace show how deep frying should be done. Lardon-like chunks of pork belly are slow braised simply in young coconut juice and fish sauce to melting tenderness. Chunks of chicken thigh huddle in shredded cabbage with Asian herbs, peanuts and tangy tamarind dressing. Modern Viet at traditional prices.