SGV: Vegetarian Vietnamese Food at Thien Tam
One rainy day, I met my vegetarian buddy over at Thien Tam for lunch. We both love Vinh Loi in the Valley and I was trying to find a similar restaurant. It turned out not only did she know of it but she had been multiple times.
I got the banh xeo as an appetizer. I loved the mushroom dipping sauce! I thought it was interesting the mushrooms and tofu were part of the crepe and it was stuffed with just bean sprouts. A lot of bean sprouts. It’s a light dish to start our meal.
I had to laugh that the spring rolls had fake shrimp that had been painted to resemble real shrimp! This was also more about the sauce. The peanut sauce is a little thin but it works well with the hot sauce for dipping purposes.
I wanted to try the hainan “chicken”… this was a mock chicken. It looked very much like chicken though of course still appearing fake at the same time. When you bit into it, you knew it wasn’t real chicken. I did like like it though because I love tofu and tofu products.
We also got the bun hue. It wasn’t actually very spicy. You may recognize this as “spicy beef soup” but obviously there wasn’t been in it. Instead, there is plenty of tofu and mushrooms. My friend who hasn’t had a lot of white flour lately devoured the noodles.
Overall I can see returning to try other items. I’d order all of the above again but I always want to try new dishes.
Thien Tam Vegetarian Restaurant
10345 Garvey Ave., El Monte, CA 91733 — (626) 579-1050
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