Part of the small shopping complex along Catalina Avenue in Parafield Gardens, Baria Restaurant specialises in offering Vietnamese cuisine. The restaurant is popular with the locals, particularly during lunchtime.
Their Sweet & Sour Pork Chops with Rice puts an interesting spin on the popular Pork Chop with Rice dish, with the pork chops tossed through a sweet and sour sauce. The pork chops were cooked just right and the sweet and sour sauce included some chilli to add a bit of heat. The vegetables in the dish had the right level of bite to them.
Sweet & Sour Pork Chops (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
For a more "normal" rice dish, there is the Crispy Chicken with Rice. The flesh of the chicken was succulent and was set off nicely by the crisp skin. What seemed to be pickled cabbage was included with the dish to add a tangy element to the dish. Their rice dishes come with a serving of soup, helping to make them a complete meal by themselves.
Crispy Chicken with Rice (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
One of the dishes listed as a chef's special, the Banh Canh (Crab Tapioca Noodle Soup) had enough crab meat to give the dish its meaty texture and the tapioca noodles were cooked al dente. There were also pork loaf and pork rib to provide an extra element of flavour to the dish. The broth is quite mild but those desiring a spicier taste can add the chilli provided before consuming the dish.
A standard dish at any Vietnamese restaurant, their Rare Beef Pho had broth with the degree of spiced flavour we desired and the slices of beef were very tender. Served with the Pho were Asian herbs, bean sprouts, lemon and chilli that can be added for extra elements of flavour and texture. Their Pho can be ordered as one of three sizes - small, large or extra-large, allowing you to pick a size that is suitable for your appetite.
Rare Beef Pho (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Another dish that can be expected to be seen at Vietnamese restaurants, their Stir-fry Beef with Vermicelli Noodles had flavoursome stir-fried beef that was not too tough. Carrots and bean sprouts added an element of freshness and the vermicelli noodles brought everything together. The dish was at its best with the Nuoc Cham sauce poured over it and mixed thoroughly to spread its tangy flavour throughout the dish.
Stir-fry Beef with Vermicelli Noodles (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
Though it was listed as a drink, the Three Colour Beans Drink can just as easily be enjoyed like a dessert. The coconut milk was not too sweet and was well balanced by the more savoury flavours of the red beans, grass jelly and creamed corn. We also liked the generous amount of crushed ice that kept the drink cold. A spoon was provided with the drink to make it easier to eat the ingredients in the drink.
Three Colour Beans Drink (Photographed by Jonathan Phoon)
The ambience is what you would expect from a small café with the tables spaced a good distance apart from each other. Convenient off-street parking is provided by the carpark in front of the shopping complex where the restaurant is located.