Shank & Bone recently opened in San Diego, serving a mix of classic and modern Vietnamese dishes.
We were very eager to check this place out and had a wonderful first experience.
The restaurant has a mix of small tables and bar seating. It’s decorated with vintage bikes, a map of former Saigon, and a print of Revolution Girl . I was especially excited for all the natural light let in from the floor to ceiling windows and open-air design.
Bánh xèo Tacos
Banh xeo, sometimes referred to as Vietnamese crepes, are sizzling savory cakes made of rice flour. They are usually filled with pork, shrimp, sprouts and herbs.
This taco version was a fun twist on the traditional. I liked the small individual servings. The crepes were quite crispy around the edges and the filling was wonderfully fragrant.
Signature Pho S&B
Of course we had to try their signature pho. Inside this bowl was a mix of oxtail, steak, brisket and bone marrow. The clear bone broth was poured tableside, which was a nice little touch.
The plate of garnishes were of the typical variety.
I really liked the broth. It was light yet flavorful and aromatic. Unlike most of the pho I’ve had, the broth did not taste laden with sodium and msg. I also appreciated that the noodles were broken up, making them easier to eat. At many restaurants, the noodles are stuck together in one large clump.
We also tried their classic pork and shrimp spring rolls. In hindsight, I wish I had tried their seafood version as I’ve had pork and shrimp countless times and the seafood option, made with fish and shrimp, is a little more unique. The spring rolls were good, though they did not vary much from the classic and so they weren’t quite as exciting as some of the other dishes we had.
The grilled squid reminded me of the food I get at night markets. I enjoyed the light smoky flavor infused from the grilling.
Tender pieces of filet mignon served with salad and broken rice. It was a solid dish and I particularly enjoyed the firm and chewy texture of the broken rice. However, the shaken beef tasted fairly similar to other versions I’ve had.
Overall, we had a delicious first visit here. I was impressed with how smoothly the restaurant was operating despite how busy it was and the fact that they just opened. I’m used to slower service, kitchen issues, etc, during soft opening but I didn’t experience any of that. Our server was very sweet and attentive and we enjoyed everything we tried. We definitely plan on coming back soon to try more of the menu.
Shank & Bone
2930 University Ave, San Diego, CA 92104