Arizonans looking to enjoy a taste of having brunch in Saigon, have good news, as a branch of the Basilic Vietnamese Kitchen opened in Central Arizona, across McDowell Road form the Phoenix Art Museum. The restaurant was opened by the three Vu brothers; Tom, John, and Vince, who all hail from Saigon.
Basilic Vietnamese Kitchen already has four branches across Florida, even before expanding to Arizona in early April. The restaurants sport more polish than most Vietnamese restaurants in Phoenix, sporting a cohesive design motif through its spacious 132-seat eatery, sporting a monochrome colour scheme with sleek furnishings and contemporary lighting. The bar’s silk and polished aesthetic was designed by the brothers themselves, with Vince even going so far as to get a few giant dragon heads.
The higher quality setting reflects on the prices though, with bowls of pho, on average, costing a bit more than other venues in the city, so potential customers looking to get a taste of brunch in Saigon will need a bit more cash on hand.
As for the menu itself, it sports a wide-range of foods from across Vietnam, with a lot of popular picks from Vietnam, like banh xeo and bun; both souped and unsouped. There’s a lot of options for people looking for starters, like fried spring rolls and wok-fried calamari, as well as drinks, with authentic Vietnamese coffee and Asian beer on the menu. Future plans also include bringing in a mixologist for cocktails.
A Florida-based Asian food restaurant, with branches in Miami, Boca Raton, Delray, and Fort Lauderdale, is not usual fare for Central Phoenix, but the brothers came to Arizona thanks to their partnership with Jaime Triana, an old Valley food personality that crossed paths with Vince in the past.
Phoenix, notably, actually has a stable, if understated, Vietnamese food scene, spread across the region, though tucked away in corners, away from common eyes. Demand for this particular culinary subsection is growing, and having the brothers bringing in a major brand into the area is expected to do much to give Phoenix’s Vietnamese cuisine scene more texture and popularity.