Another special, mien mang vit, is a soup made with duck, clear (a.k.a glass) noodles and bamboo shoots. Dao Tien's rendition was a triumph despite the fact that the kitchen had run out of duck and had to substitute chicken. The broth is more deeply flavored than your mom's homemade chicken soup even before you goose your bowlful with basil, culantro (much like cilantro, only stronger), sliced jalapeños and chile sauce. Duck would only make it better.

On this cold evening, the ribs and the soup are more than enough to send me home warm and happy, but as a friend and I prepare to leave, Diane Dinh calls out from the kitchen to our server, who in turn asks us to stay: Dinh wants us to try a dessert. This is che chuoi: bits of banana roasted until soft and very sweet, served in a thick sauce of condensed milk with salt and chopped peanuts.

Inside Dao Tien.
Jennifer Silverberg
Inside Dao Tien.

Location Info

Map

Dao Tien Vietnamese Bistro

8600 Olive Blvd.
University City, MO 63132

Category: Restaurant > Vietnamese

Region: Olivette/ Overland

8600 Olive Boulevard, University City; 314-995-6960.
Hours: 10 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun.-Thu., 10 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat. (Closed Wed.)

It's only three or four bites, a refreshing antidote to the portions most restaurants serve (because most of us expect them to): simple and homey and a perfect nutshell metaphor for Dao Tien.

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4 comments
Carolyn
Carolyn

I love this place. It has a beguiling innocence. The banh mi (sandwich) with sunny-side up eggs is my favorite menu item. The iced coffee is also delicious.

Aiko BlackFlame
Aiko BlackFlame

My only question is why the reviewers are so pork obsessed. I swear that almost every review on rft obsesses over a pork dish. And well, what are those of us who are allergic to pork to do? This is still my fav. review site though for st. louis.

Trinitee1995
Trinitee1995

Really good article which truly showcase a writer who genuinely know Vietnamese food and provide mouth watering description of the dishes on the menu. Thanks Ian.

rmward
rmward

We've had our eye on Dao Tien since it opened but haven't made it in yet. Glad to hear it's good. Thanks for the review, Ian.

 
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