Date of visit: 2/7/12
One awesome thing about Vinh Loi Tofu is that it fosters a sense of community when you eat there and you meet interesting people. Like tonight, I gave a guy my email address for him to send me an article about drones flying over the US. At the end of the night, a lady sang Happy Birthday opera-style to another lady whose birthday turned out to be the same as Kevin’s. This wasn’t just some lady singing, this was legit opera singing. It was insane.
We said we were going to venture into more of the salad/noodle dishes, but this post perfectly exemplifies the power of THE LOI. You just cannot escape the deliciousness of their soups.
an unorderable, off-menu soup with tomatoes, green onions, onions, vermicelli noodles, chicken, peanuts, cubed tofu and crumbled tofu.
I had been staring at a picture of this soup on Kevin’s facebook page for a long time now. When I went in, he had no idea what I was talking about when I ordered the “Tofu Soup” (as it was labeled on his facebook), but he quickly had me show him the picture he posted. He let me know it was an experimental soup he had made for himself for lunch one day, but that he was going to make it for me anyway! I LOVED IT. I love tofu, I love vegetables, and I love soup: a perfect vegan trifecta for me! I can’t describe the broth because I cannot pinpoint the great flavors. When I first took a sip it was a familiar taste, but quickly dissolved into something quite unrecognizable. It had a nice thick, chunky broth and with each bite I had a little bit of crumbled tofu and peanuts. I made the mistake of adding some bean sprouts that were left over from the 2012 soup. I typically love adding the bean sprouts, but the texture of them simply did not mesh with this soup. I should have just left it the way Kevin made it for me. This is the kind of soup I’d think of having if I had a cold or just needed a scrumptious soup on a rainy day. The sad thing about this soup is that you can’t order it. Sorry, but Kevin was awesome enough to name the soup after me! I hope he will make it again for me in the future!
an off-menu soup with yellow noodle, vegan ham, chinese broccoli, lettuce, cabbage, onion, fried onion, red chili, lime.
Frankly, sometimes you can’t even pinpoint what one of these soups exactly tastes like other than that it’s amazing. And this is a perfect example. The best I can describe the flavor of the broth is “meaty” or “ham-y,” probably as a result of the copious amounts of vegan ham floating in the bowl. Yet, in contrast, the chinese broccoli has a unique flavor all to itself that I don’t think I’d ever tasted before. That, combined with the lettuce and cabbage, made this one of the greenest, leafiest Vinh Loi soups I’ve ever had. The yellow noodles are a favorite noodle of mine, especially in soups, and the red chili and lime, combined with the spiciness of the broth (how Kevin knows I like it), just made this soup incredible. You will never be disappointed with one of the “20- -” soups and the 2012 is just another perfect example. All delicious, all different. Honestly, the mystery of what you’re getting in a soup only adds to the megalithic awesmosity of Vinh Loi Tofu.