Northern Vietnamese Cuisine at Viet Mama Cafe

There are many new Vietnamese restaurants popping up on Victoria Drive, and I am planning to visit a new one every time until I try every single Vietnamese restaurant there! So you might see me blogging about Vietnamese restaurants more for the new little while. Last weekend, Mr. and I went to Viet Mama Cafe, which specializes in Northern Vietnamese cuisine. It is a family-owned business, and you can tell from their service that they really care about customers’ thoughts and hope to offer the best to them. All the dishes here have no MSG and use fresh ingredients.

Viet Mama Cafe is clean and bright, with a decent amount of seats. They have a small menu, but still with a good amount of varieties. One thing I noticed is that they put pandan leaf in their tea, which gives a soothing, aromatic flavor. I really enjoyed the small detail and care they put, even to a cup of tea.

I ordered a few items to share with Mr. – Meat Rice Roll (#8 Banh Cuon Nhan), Crab Meat Noodle with Fish Cakes (#12 Bun Rieu Cua Cha Ca), Chicken Noodle (#13 Pho Ga), and an Iced Vietnamese Coffee. Yes, I think we ordered slightly too much for two people, without knowing their portions.

Meat Rice Roll (#8 Banh Cuon Nhan) / rice flour, pork, shrimp, fried shallot, pork meatballs, fried ham, vegetables served with fish sauce / $14.95

The Meat Rice Roll first arrived, and it is rice flour with pork and shrimp, topped with fried shallot. On the side, it has a bowl of pork meatballs and fish sauce, along with fried ham and vegetables. It was my first time trying Vietnamese rice rolls, and it tastes amazing. We dipped the rice roll in the warm fish sauce broth, and I really enjoyed it. The broth is not salty and relatively light, which allows the rice rolls to shine. I also think the pork meatballs are a great pairing in the broth.

Chicken Noodle (#13 Pho Ga) / free range chicken / $11.95

Chicken Noodle is shredded chicken soup noodle with thick noodles. The broth is clear and light, but still flavorful. The shredded chicken is tender, but I wish it has more meat in the bowl. The portion is huge, but I feel like it is mostly noodles.

Crab Meat Noodle with Fish Cakes (#12 Bun Rieu Cua Cha Ca) / real crab meat, fish cake, tofu, vegetables / $12.95

Crab Meat Noodle with Fish Cakes is a popular pho, which has real crab meat, fish cakes, tofu, and vegetables. Unlike the chicken noodle, it uses thin noodles, which I think a thicker noodle should be used, so the noodles can absorb more flavors from the broth. The broth is not as flavorful as expected, but the owner said we can ask for fish sauce next time. I think the broth lacks the crab flavor, which fish sauce might not be helpful in this case. It has a generous amount of fish cakes and tofu, as well as a lot of noodles.

Vietnamese Iced Coffee (#19 Cafe Xua Da) / $5

The Iced Vietnamese Coffee here is served differently, which is shaken up with the condensed milk. I found the coffee to be slightly too sweet, and I still prefer the traditional drip Vietnamese coffee.

Overall Impression

Viet Mama Cafe is a newly opened Northern Vietnamese restaurant, and I can feel their passion for the food. However, there were some hits and misses. My personal favourite is the Meat Rice Roll, and I would totally return for more. As weird as it sounds, I do wish the portion for the pho is slightly smaller or with fewer noodles. After a few bites, I felt stuffed eating just the noodles, which is difficult for me to enjoy other dishes. Overall, I love how the dishes here are served with no MSG, so everything is light and not too salty.

Taste: 4/5 • Service: 5/5 • Ambiance: 4/5 • Quality-Price: 4/5

Viet Mama Cafe Instagram 

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