By: Abby Fricke, Staff Writer
Lovers of Vietnamese cuisine will be thoroughly discouraged by Greenville’s Saigon Fast Food restaurant. Located on North Pleasantburg Drive, Saigon is a local Asian-style fast food restaurant. The location is difficult to find and quite easy to drive by. The exterior of the restaurant creates a rather unsettling front.
Customers walk in, and are at a loss as to whether they should themselves or ask for a table. Upon receiving a table, the menu is brought out. This is not your typical menu either. Most menus consist of a few items and their corresponding prices; this menu, however, came as a binder of sorts that had not only the items and prices, but also individual pictures of each. While to some this may seem appealing in that you are able to see what your meal will look like, I found this to be a tad overwhelming. It is somewhat exciting to order a meal and be surprised by it.
In this case, I knew what was coming out and still was not very impressed once it arrived. In a restaurant that was rather empty, I had to wait for a decent amount of time just to be asked what to drink. The time from when my order was taken until the arrival of the food was rather short. This is definitely a plus in that they stick to their mantra of fast food. When the food finally did arrive, it was less than what was expected.
I ordered the sticky rice and spicy shrimp in addition to a strawberry bubble tea. The shrimp looked almost an unnatural color of pink and the rice lived up to its name of stickiness, making it a bit of a struggle to break apart. The meal itself was nothing short of ordinary. Additionally, I have had bubble tea that is extraordinary before and this bubble tea was nothing of the sort. The restaurant service was detached and distant.
I found myself wondering where the waiters were, and in the end, the chef delivered my meal to me. The restaurant itself was somewhat run down, and there were little to no effects. No music played, creating a level of discomfort for diners. As a side note, one of my party members had to stop eating her meal because she began to feel sick. In conclusion, while Vietnamese restaurants are in high demand these days, Saigon is not one that foodies will come to enjoy.