I saw my last posting and thought…I can’t let a whole month go by! But I’ve also been slacking on visiting new places. I believe it’s been 3 weeks or so. Bad! I know!
I say this every post, but this weekend, I’ll try to hit up a place or two. I need to, otherwise, what else would I write about. I don’t think you people come back for my witty writing right?
So this may be 3 weeks ago, but if something was delicious, it’s usually easy enough to remember it. In this case, it was delicious enough to remember. What helped was that I was going in with lower expectations and got something much more delightful than I thought. I believe every Asian culture has some version of their own rice porridge aka congee. This one was a Vietnamese chicken congee or chao ga. Now I say lower expectations because we were going to a Vietnamese restaurant and I wouldn’t be getting pho and I really wanted pho that day. It was a chilly day and we were out drinking the night before, so nothing beats a cold hangover day like a nice warm bowl of pho. But since this was a restaurant on my list, I had to get my dish. It was a pleasant surprise. I didn’t read the description earlier so I didn’t know the whole dish was made with chicken stock (or that it had cubes of blood in it!) and it came with a plate of flavorful slices of chicken as a side dish.
The bowl of congee was rich and flavorful. I’ve never been a fan of blood cubes, so I took a bite to try it (still didn’t like it), and picked the rest out. Besides that, I really enjoyed everything else. The chicken slices were mixed with some fresh onions (which you should know I didn’t like, but they added a good flavor), lime juice, greens, garlic, and fried shallots. Then the dipping sauce, which I have no idea what was it in, was a nice sweet/tangy contrast to the chicken, so when you ate everything at once, it was just wonderful.
When you’re feeling so jacked from a night of naughtiness that nothing sounds good enough to eat, this congee-like soup will fix you up in no time. An intensely concentrated chicken stock lends an almost golden taste to the rice porridge it flavors. Heady cubes of chilled blood add an earthiness only boosted by the slinky mushrooms that peek through the surface.
Quan Ba 9
4285 Buford Highway NE
Atlanta, GA 30345