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Thursday, February 01, 2007

What's in a Name?

I chuckled every time I drove by this restaurant sign in Madison, Wisconsin. Unfortunately, it appeared closed all the time so I never got a chance to eat there. :( Loosely translated: Yummy eatery. Quan (less formal than restaurant) An (eat) Ngon (yummy). I joke that I should open a restaurant called Quan An Ngon Hon (Yummier Eatery) or Quan An Ngon Nhat (Yummiest Eatery). Yeah, I know, I kill me with my humor. Quan An Ngon is my favorite restaurant in Saigon, Vietnam. The story goes the restaurant was opened by an overseas Vietnamese, who rounded up all the best street vendors and had them make their specialties there. The restaurant is situated in the center with an extensive courtyard where diners also eat. I still salivate thinking of their banh da ca loc (Vietnamese snakehead fish with rice paper noodles and dill) and freshly squeezed coc ep (Vietnamese ambarella juice). So if you're ever in Saigon, Quan An Ngon is at 138 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, next to Doc Lap (Independence Palace, formerly the Presidential Palace). Noodlepie has photos of the courtyard. Also by the same owner, Nha Hang Com Ngon (yummy restaurant). A much pricier (pricier meaning the dishes weren't $1 or less) buffet restaurant that the cab driver took us to by mistake. We opted to grab another cab to go to Quan An Ngon instead. And yes, you'd have to be Vietnamese to get the humor in seeing these two restaurant signs back to back. And my favorite dumpling house. Luscious Dumplings. Mmm. The name just makes you salivate doesn't it?
Luscious Dumplings Inc. - San Gabriel 1
Honorary mention should go to So Pho So Good in Sydney, Australia. But I'm in the photo so I can't show it to you. And for non-restaurant names, I liked this souvenir shop I photographed in Edinburgh, Scotland. August 11, 2010 update: How could I not add the inappropriately named Hung Far Low Restaurant & Lounge?
6 Hung Far Low Restaurant and Lounge - Portland - Oregon
Anyone else have favorite clever names for restaurants or businesses?


  1. Hi Bill,
    Yup, that's why I love these signs.

  2. Guess what Vinh and I saw yesterday? Pho King Noodle House.

  3. Hi Tania,
    On Valley? I thought it just went out of business.

  4. i went to quan an ngon in hanoi. i think it's a chain!

  5. Tania,
    Small chain. Just the two in Saigon and Hanoi.


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