Lunch with Max: Miss Saigon, Downtown Amherst

lunch logo

Every few weeks, I drive to Amherst to have lunch with my old friend Ed. He suggested that we share some of our finds with our blog readers, so herewith is the first installment of a new feature on Readuponit: Lunch reviews of local eateries. Today’s lunch was at Miss Saigon, in bustling downtown Amherst.

I’d say this one is a keeper–you can always tell a good Asian restaurant by how many Asians choose to dine there. This one was packed with a mix of young students and some people taking a break from work. The menu is extensive–but we choose first from the lunch specials, which is always a good value.  The selections included a tofu-veggie soup, a small spring roll, white rice and the entree. I picked six spice chicken, which was full of veggies and had a pleasing brown sauce.

Miss Saigon dinner
Six spice chicken with vegetables.

The soup was a light broth studded with pieces of tofu and a few greens.  The spring roll, sadly, was mostly the fried roll part with not much filling, a throw-away.  But I really like all of the veggies and it was a great lunch. Ed, as is his usual tradition, went for something more substantial, from the inside of the big menu. He chose shrimp with mixed vegetables, and asked our charming Vietnamese server to make it spicy. Which they did!

Our visit started off on the right foot; the first thing noted was that on each table there stood a bottle of Nouc Mam (the ubiquitous Vietnamese fish sauce condiment), an authentic- and in this country- often overlooked touch. His selection was $12.50 and came with more rice and on a larger plate.

Verdict: Nice atmosphere, busy environment, and I paid $11 and he paid $16 for two delicious meals. A good place to have lunch in downtown Amherst.

Miss Saigon, 96 North Pleasant St. Amherst MA 413-253-9988, closed Mondays.