With joining the dozens of restaurants that have established themselves in the Eden Center, Falls Church’s Vietnamese shopping center, comes the challenge of standing out from the crowd. Vy Bistro, one of the newest additions to the Eden Center, seems to have done that by way of décor.
The restaurant’s decoration makes the first impression, and it’s a powerful one. It’s clean and modern; simple geometric shapes, from square cut-outs in chair backs to cylindrical hanging lamps, stand out against a nearly unadorned backdrop. Warmth is added, though, by rich tones of red and brown, and grey stone accents along the walls. Vy Bistro offers this chic spot for dining, but still gives diners what they’re looking for from an Eden Center eatery: A good variety of authentic Vietnamese eats at a reasonable price.
Just shy of a hundred items make up the Vy Bistro menu, and they range in price from $4 spring roll plates to seafood and multi-meat vermicelli entrees that cost up to $14. Very few entrees break the $10 mark. These Vietnamese delicacies are divided by category – appetizers; rolls and skewers; salads (think less dressing-laden lettuce and more fish sauce-topped shredded vegetable blends); noodle soups (both pho and other varieties); rice vermicelli (both as loose noodles and as woven squares); rice dishes; stir fries; and vegetarian creations. Despite the neat categories, selecting is still daunting. Some dishes, though, are listed as chef specials on a board outside the restaurant as well as on the menu, and some have earned “Vy Bistro” distinctions on the menu, which gives them prominence.
Among such house dishes are the pork patty rolls ($5.95 for three), with crisp-edged slices of pink pork set against crunchy vegetables in a chewy rice paper shell, served with a shrimp-flavored sauce for dipping. Within the salads selection is another such patty-based house special ($9.95), which offers a plate of fish cakes on a bed of tangy slices of vegetables and a helping of sweet fish sauce on the side.
The chef’s signature entree is the Cơm Gà xé phây ($8.95), in which cold strips of moist chicken are seasoned with a chili-garlic-ginger fish sauce, a mild though flavorful blend. The dish is joined on the plate by a mound of warm rice which is seasoned, but in such a way that the delicate flavor of the chicken is not affected.
Rice in one way or another is a component of nearly all the entrees, though there is incredible variety in the way it is used – be it as rice noodles bobbing in a bowl of beefy pho; as vermicelli strands entwined with bits of vegetables, meat slices, and meat patties; or as woven vermicelli mats ready to join meats, herbs, and other topping. Diners can choose a three-meat dish ($10.95) among the woven vermicell options, which plates pieces of tender grilled pork, beef, and chicken, each flavorful and pleasantly distinct from one another. The meats are tucked alongside several palm-sized vermicelli pancakes. Vegetables and a vivid bouquet of green herbs like sweet basil allow for many different blends of flavors in a plate that already offers much variety by way of the meat trio.
The bargain prices and vast array of dishes found on the Vy Bistro menu will leave the lasting impression, though the experience of enjoying this restaurant’s Vietnamese cuisine in elegant surroundings won’t be forgotten.
Vy Bistro is located at 6757 Wilson Blvd., Falls Church. For more information, call 571-282-3930 or visit vybistro.com. Restaurant hours are Monday – Sunday: 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.