Pho Minh Long is a restaurant with simple decor, but cheap, fast and delicious Vietnamese & Chinese cuisine. It turned out to be a lucky find for us, because it is conveniently located across from Ringwood Lake Park and due to the weather our plans changed from a barbecue picnic to plan B, which was an eatery across the road.
We were a group of about 12, and on short notice I thought we should reserve a table ahead to play it safe. They were pleasant and understanding on the phone, as I first called to check availability and then again to confirm, after getting consensus from the group.
This restaurant opened earlier this year, and they said that they opened here because the Mitcham Pho Minh Long was too busy. I'm glad they did, because there aren't any other Vietnamese restaurants in this area, that I know of, and I like to try different foods when eating out.
Don't be fooled by the appearance of this eatery, the place was buzzing when I walked in. It's a fairly small restaurant, with tight seating for maybe 40. A smaller group of 4 or less would have been fine without a booking, but I was glad we made the reservation for this group size.
On looking at the menu, there was a good selection to choose from and quite a few dishes appealed to me. There was a question around the table about whether we were going to have shared plates or individual serves? About half the group was wanting the pho (a Vietnamese broth with noodles and thinly sliced beef or chicken), so we opted for individual plates, but shared a few entrée serves.
Wontons and spring rolls at Pho Minh Long, Ringwood
They have a good vegetarian selection, which caters well for the non-meat eaters. The vegetarian spring rolls did rival the regular ones and the Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce had lots of colour in the vegetables, which is pleasing.
Next to be served was the pho. This came with the sprouts, chilli, lemon and herbs on the side, then you dress the pho with as much or as little as you like. My friend took great delight in "decorating" the soup, so I could take a nice picture of it. This is the beef pho, but the chicken looked equally as good.
Minh Long Chicken & vegetables with tamarind sauce at Pho Minh Long, Ringwood
I ordered the crispy chicken noodles soup/dry, which I must admit was a bigger meal than I realised it would be. I'm not a huge eater, so next time I wouldn't have an entrée, unless I was sharing the main. As we were there for a while, with a couple joining us late at the end, I managed to graze my way through most of it, but I didn't have much for dinner that night.
The staff were pleasant and it was good value, with meals priced between $10-19 and the entrées started from $5. They also have takeaway available too. So I'm glad that Pho Minh Long is fairly close to me because I'm looking forward to go back there again.