Best Spring Rolls - 2003
Never let it be said that St Louisans lack access to a wide array of variations on the spring roll. Seemingly endless combinations of lettuces, herbs, noodles, vegetables, sprouts and tofu produce the perfect lead-in to a meal of Vietnamese or Thai origin. Some are steamed, others tightly wrapped in rice paper, some may accidentally split open to display the riches inside (corn!?). Such a prelude should indicate the tight race this category presents, but after a meal consisting solely of spring rolls from the top contenders, Vietnam Palace comes out on top, barely edging out Pho Saigon (best herbage) and OR Smoothie (freshest ingredients). Vietnam Palace's rolls come slightly warm from the kitchen, rolled to order in a perfect balance of noodles, sprouts, tofu and greens. The accompanying sauce pushes these scrumptious bundles over the top, achieving a perfect balance of sweet, spicy and nutty. These delectable fripperies cool the palate, prepping the stage for the spices to come.