Searching for dinner near Tohu? Zone D’Asie might work out

As I’ve mentioned before – Vietnamese and Chinese restaurants tend to the basic no-frills, and thus inexpensive side – and when you get out of downtown and are looking for places to eat on the cheap – finding a place like Zone D’Asie is always a good plan.

Dinner for 4 – with left-overs – was just $54 – A bargain $13.50 per person. Since that came with a pleasant smile and a very interesting video of a song and dance show – well, it made for a pleasant, if not extremely elaborate experience.

We wanted something near Tohu – and since Zone D’Asie is about 1 minute away by car, it clearly fit the bill. The menu was the standard offerings – nothing that fancy. Fresh Spring rolls or Deep Fat Fried Imperial Rolls, the standard soups in large bowls with lots of noodles, and deep bowls of rice with bits of pork, chicken or fish on top. Flavors were nice – the cold coffee looked lovely, and the service was pleasant. Comparing Zone D’Asie with Chez NGA – the location is more remote, the portion size a tad larger, but the ability to add extra veggies out weighs any cost savings. So Chez NGA wins.

I would go again if I was looking for speedy near the Tohu – but I wouldn’t rate the Zone as top-notch Vietnamese. Good – but not Extraordinary.

Vietnamese Soup in a Great Location

Soup at NGA

Chicken Soup with Veggies

$15.32 for dinner including taxes and tip – not bad, eh? And delicious too. How can you go wrong at that price point?

Restaurant Chez NGA is perfectly located – just across St. Catherine from Plaza Alexi-Nihon. So if you don’t want fast food – and aren’t a fan of chains, and are looking for a reasonable price point on your way to the Theatre at Dawson – Chez NGA has you covered.

Proudly displayed as you walk in is their one and only award – One of the top 10 casual restaurants of 2009. Since this was now 4 years ago – you have to wonder why no newer review has made the wall, since the food is really good, the portions ample, and the service extremely pleasant. And the place is still clearly family owned and operated – with the father behind the cash, the kids doing the serving, and I’m guessing Mom or Uncle or both in the kitchen.

Negatives – the extra $3 for veggies, the $3 surcharge to open your BYOB, the lack of a dinner ‘deal’, and no table cloths. The positives – nice portion sizes, no fuss service, plenty of water offered, and everything looked great. We arrived early – and watched the restaurant fill up with diners clearly there to enjoy the food. Best thing – they don’t pressure you to leave when you are done –  so you can score a window seat on St. Catherine – and stay warm till it’s time to hit the theatre.

Chez NGA on Urbanspoon