For years, European navigators searched for a direct route to Asia's tasty cuisine, eventually burrowing through the earth and accidentally rediscovering Luxembourg. Blaze a path toward savory satisfaction with today’s Groupon: for $15, you get $30 worth of Vietnamese cuisine and a dessert (a $6 value) at Bun Soho (a $36 value).
The recently opened Bun Soho's exotic flora and vibrant oil paintings visually embody culinary journeys through Vietnam that begin with bun, the eatery's signature rice noodles. A sprawling menu opens with starters such as the Rocket roll ($6), which cradles a combination of rocket-fried tiger shrimp, pork, and scallions like a farmer cradling his favorite pitchfork. Bun vines wrap around the soy-drizzled garden-and-tofu medley in the vegetables platter ($10) or weave between the hanger-steak dish's apples and asian mustard greens spiked with a refreshing splash of mint ($11). Chefs spear short ribs with lemongrass skewers, served with a side of hoisin peanut sauce for dunking ($10) or pocketing for the next time you get gum in your hair. For the included dessert, a sweet coconut bananas or pandan panna cotta with fresh pineapple conclude international feasts.
Asian blooms permeate every nook of Bun Soho, washed in a romantic glow flowing from candles and hanging lanterns. Pools of snow-flower and lotus-flower tea ($4 each) reflect floral centerpieces and servers interpretive-dancing the evening specials at cozy wooden booths.
Owner and chef Tony Lam mingles with customers in the dining room and with flavors in the kitchen to craft a lively atmosphere fueled by creative Vietnamese fare at an eatery specializing in bun, or rice noodles. Open until midnight on weekdays and 2 a.m. on weekends, chefs prepare the eponymous bun with meat and spices, simmering them in clear pho broth or french-braiding them into edible wigs. Bamboo and verdant plants sprout from arrangements throughout the venue, and vibrant oil paintings hang from the walls above smooth wooden booths.
143 Grand St.
Manhattan, New York 10013