Perfect weather for today's post. Actually I've been waiting on arctic temps to share it since I first tried the place last Spring. There's about a three mile stretch of Lawrence Ave that has a handful of Vietnamese restaurants. Coco Vietnamese Sandwiches & Pho sits the furthest east just west of Ashland. As mentioned it opened up last year and aside from a Hungry Hound visit the press on the place has been very non-existent. That's part of the beauty in Chicago's dining scene, there's always more places to try. I've been here a few times now and will continue to go as weather remains cold.
Vietnamese Food on Lawrence Avenue
Sandwiches, Pho, Vermicelli Bowls, and Fried Rice make out the menu. Most every time I've been in there the same husband and wife team are making sure everyone is ok. When the weather is warm I enjoy their bahn mi sandwiches. Aside from perfectly crusty bread the ingredients inside are always fresh. That's where this place stands out to me, everything is really clean. The meats in the bahn mi haven't been sitting around all day and same goes for the toppings. The jalapenos crunch and the cucumbers do the same. If there's a fresher option in town for Bahn Mi, I haven't found it.
Coco Bahn Mi Special (Ham, Pate, Pork Roll)
Then there's the pho. As mentioned the cleanliness of the food here stands out. Start with the beef broth which is simmered for 8+ hours with a variety of spices mixed in. Its then left to sit overnight so that all of the fat which rises to the top is removed. The result is an almost clear broth with deep beef flavors. You have your choice of filling and no matter which one you choose it will come with beef thats been well trimmed and always fresh. Even the condiment plate that comes on the side is full of fresh crunchy vegetables. You know what? All this talking about the product has made me hungry for it. Might have to slap on a few layers of clothes and head on over. See ya next time.
Vietnamese Beef Noodle Soup
Coco Vietnamese Sandwiches & Pho
1613 W Lawrence Ave
Chicago, IL 60640