Phi Phi Vietnamese & Chinese Restaurant, 28 Alfrieda Street, St Albans. Phone: 9366 5686
On a blazing hot Melbourne day, is there any better place to be than luxuriating in the AC-cooled confines of Phi Phi?
It’s been a while since we’ve been here for a feed.
The place has had a bit of a makeover and there’s some new faces around.
But all else appears much the same – including the superb food.
We’re in the house to enjoy it with Brimbank councillors Duyen Anh Pham and Virginia Tachos.
We play it safe when ordering – nothing in the way of boundary testing for us during this lunch.
But what we do order is AMAZING.
Virginia originally wanted Vietnamese coleslaw, but is delighted nevertheless with the rare beef salad with lemon juice ($25, top photo).
More in a Thai style than Vietnamese, it’s just as tangy as expected and turbocharged with all sorts of greenery.
The meat is rare as promised and excellent.
Good thing we ordered the small version of the combination fried rice ($10), as it’s very generous.
It’s also momentously fluffy and studded with many plump and good-sized prawns.
This lives on another planet from fried rice of meh bain marie infamy.
Silky tofu done in salt and pepper style ($14) is Bennie’s choice – and it doesn’t disappoint.
The tofu chunks are profoundly plump and delicious.
A large serve of roast pork ($18) is incredible.
But that’s no surprise, as the barbecue meats here are deservedly a source of pride.
It’s all good and mostly tender, with just enough gnarly crunch to keep things interesting.
Phi Phi is a jewel of St Albans and the west.