Monday, July 9, 2007

Dragonfly Vietnamese restaurant

I really enjoy Vietnamese food, but it's not one of Tara's favorites. She's had some bad experiences and generally can't find much she likes on the menus. I was in a noodlely mood yesterday, so she humored me and we decided to try Dragonfly. I'd heard great things about the food, but mixed comments on service. Since Vietnamese restaurants, at least in my experience, aren't big on service, I usually cut them more slack than other places.

We found the restaurant in the northwest corner of a mall at Dobson and Southern in Mesa. We got there around 2pm and the fairly spacious restaurant only had one other table. A waitress showed us to a corner table and we looked over the menu. A quick look told me that there wasn't much Tara would care for, but she said she could find something. One thing I liked was that there was a whole section for summer rolls, one of my favorite things. The waitress came by for drinks, and Tara went with a coke while I got a limeade. When she returned with the drinks, she asked if we'd like to get an appetizer. She suggested the summer roll sampler and we went with it. After looking over the menu, Tara decided to get a pork noodle dish that she could get with crispy noodles. I went with Bun Saigon.

A few minutes later, the summer rolls arrived. A large square plate held four different rolls, each cut in half. There were also two bowls of peanut sauce, one with a large dollop of srichi sauce on top. One thing I noticed right off was the rolls appeared to have been made ahead of time. The wrappers were dried and chewy, so I was disappointed with that. The sampler contained: salmon rolls, shrimp, char-grilled pork, and I think a shrimp and pork. Once I got past the wrapper, the rolls were really good. Neither Tara or I cared for the salmon, but I really liked the others. If they had been rolled fresh, I would have loved them.

Tara's entree arrived only a couple minutes after the summer rolls. She liked the noodles but didn't care for the pork. She found it too fatty. We decided that when I'm in the mood for Vietnamese, she'll stay home.

My Bun Saigon was really good. It had cured pork, char-grilled pork, and shrimp in a bowl on top of the noodles. An egg roll was cut into four pieces on top of it all A separate dish held the sliced carrots, cukes, and sprouts, along with a bowl of very spicy nuac mam. It was too spice for me, but I was able to get some plain nuac mam by asking. I wasn't sure how I'd like the cured pork, but I ended up really enjoying it. The grilled pork was charred nicely and had a sweet flavor. The egg roll was outstanding as well. I will need to get a separate order of them next time I visit.I poured the nuac mam over the whole thing and had no complaints. It was just right.

Service was fine as well. Our drinks were refilled promptly and any requests were handled with no problems. I'll definitely keep it in mind when I am in the mood for Vietnamese if I'm in the area. If the summer rolls were rolled fresh, I'd make the extra drive for them.

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