Thursday, May 20, 2010

Tan Thanh

Tan Thanh
57 Corsair Ave, Inala

Just bought a car recently. Well, not that recently but in scale with how infrequently I've been uploading this blog, it's quite recent. It was a bit of a fiasco picking up the beast because I actually don't have my license (pause for scoffing and snide laughter) so I had to recruit two friends to act as drivers.

One of them was my uni friend Ellen who I hardly ever see now that we're all split up on placement. We planned to catch up over lunch after I got my car sorted out. As for where to eat, it was an easy decision because Ellen wanted to prove where she thought the best pho in Brisbane was.

I left my new acquisition at home and Ellen drove us to Inala (Byron bailed due to nerdy uni commitments). Despite having lived out West, I had only been to Inala shops maybe once before. For those who haven't visited, there's the standard shopping center building and behind it, a courtyard market area that doesn't even feel like it's within Australia. I get a genuine Asian vibe walking through there.

Tan Thanh is off to the side (vague directions I know but honestly, I have no idea) and my first impression was that it was PACKED. The entrance is small and easy to miss but there were tonnes of tables inside and it seemed completely full. We were very lucky to be squeezed into a table for two.

The clientele seems mostly Vietnamese, if that's any indication of authenticity. The menu is extensive. We ordered a couple of drinks and a meal item each.


Ellen had chosen a lemon tea drink which was quite nice, strong and refreshing. My iced white coffee was also very strong and I'm not sure if it contained real espresso but it did taste as though it wasn't just coffee syrup. I don't think Ellen liked it much (her feedback was "it's 'different'") but I thought it was a nice drink.

Beef pho

Having been promised Brisbane's best pho, I wasn't going to order anything else. I chose the most standard pho item - beef noodle soup without any trimmings. The serving was huge and there was a lot of meat floating on the top. Since I'm not a pho connoisseur, those are the only things I can really comment on... I mean, the flavor seemed good to me (they all taste the same?) and there was a lot of content. The beef slices were nice and tender. Thumbs up.

Hu tieu

Ellen ordered the hu tieu which seems to be her usual pick (judging from the limited occasions we've had Vietnamese food together) and her reasoning is that it has a better soup base flavor. I think the noodles are different too.

I actually thought Tan Thanh was great. It's really everything you'd want from an eatery: extensive menu, fast service, large servings, good flavor and cheap. I wish it was closer to me because it's one of those places I'd definitely visit on a regular basis.

Tan Thanh Vietnamese on Urbanspoon


  1. Yes it's one of the best Vietnamese food in Brissie!! I love their lemongrass beef with cold noodle salad too...

  2. Hi Bonnie!

    I'm thinking of heading back soonish. Am in the moooood. I heard there's one in Darra that is good too? Can't remember the name for the life of me. Help?

  3. I've never been to a Vietnamese restaurant in Darra... maybe I can ask my Viet friend for you :)

  4. I've asked several Viet friends and they all don't know haha!
    A quick search on google came up with two promising venues:
    Yum Yum Peking Duck (sounds kind of Chinese to me though)

    The more likely one:
    Que Huong Restaurant Vietnamese & Chinese Traditional Seafood‎

  5. Hi! If any of you wonders why Tan Thanh Restaurant has the best Pho in Brisbane, it is because we cook our broth FRESHLY EVERYDAY unlike other restaurants, the usual way for them is to cook the soup and then divide it into smaller containers and then store them in a HUGE bridge and use it as cold and only reheat the soup when have order. Oppsite of that way, we cook the soup freshly everyday. We cook the ox bones since the day before to obtain the stock, which will later on put in spices and ingredients in order to make our exquisite soup.

  6. Hi Anonymous (presumably owners of Tan Thanh?)...
    Thanks for commenting on here! Your cooking efforts are greatly appreciated. We love authentic Vietnamese food and the price is so reasonable. Keep it up :).

  7. Having been to Vietnam in November just gone, I think Tan Thanh is THE BEST Vietnamese restaurant in Brisbane and I regularly make the trek there. The Grilled Chicken is the best.

  8. The crispy skin chicken is superb.