Ngon Vietnamese Kitchen will open for dine-in this September. (Courtesy of Ngon)
Ngon Vietnamese Kitchen is now open for takeout only orders. (Courtesy)
The limited Ngon menu includes items like Bun Cha Ha Noi. (Courtesy of Ngon)
The full menu at Ngon will include dishes like crab fried rice. (Courtesy of Ngon)
And Duck Curry. (Courtesy Ngon)
Eventually Ngon wants to expand to late-night hours with coffee, desserts, and bites on their outdoor patio. (Courtesy of Ngon)
King Crab Banh Cuon
Dallas restauranteur Carol Nguyen isn’t new to our dining scene. She got her start in the food world as a silent restaurant investor a decade ago, then opened a Japanese sushi concept with her family, followed by a Cajun restaurant called Crazee Crab in Grand Prairie. Her latest entree into the scene: a Lower Greenville spot called Ngon Vietnamese Kitchen, Nguyen’s first Vietnamese concept.
Training in New Orleans gave Nguyen the seafood experience she needed to open Crazee Crab in 2014. But the idea of opening a restaurant inspired by her true roots — one that pulled from her upbringing in Ha Noi and love of Vietnam street food — was never far from her mind. When Nguyen noticed movers hauling items out of the former Shivas Bar and Grille space on Lower Greenville (the pre-pandemic bustle of the neighborhood felt reminiscent of Ha Noi), she felt called to the space.
As for the name Ngon, the word means “delicious” in Vietnamese. It’s also the name of Nguyen’s mother, Ngôn. (There are different pronunciations to the words, but a delightful coincidence nevertheless.) Nguyen learned more about cooking every time she went back home to visit, where she also immersed herself in the food world of Ha Noi. The women-led restaurant team at Ngon includes Nguyen, along with managers Lyna Tran and Nini Nguyen.
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If women ruled the world…we’ll have restaurants like Ngon opening up! 💪 (very soon!)🤗🔥 ⠀ Meet the women powerhouse trio behind Ngon – (from left to right) restaurant owner Carol Nguyen and Managers Lyna Tran & Nini Nguyen. Lyna & Nini are family to Carol, & she credits most of her success & her success moving forward because of her solid team of boss babes! ✊💕🙏 ⠀ Say hi (or chào) when we officially open up! 💛 #roar #ngonquá #hànội #mamangonapproved #ngonvietkitchen #vietnamesefood #bossbabes #bosses
Ngon’s seafood-heavy menu will feature foods inspired by Nguyen’s favorite Vietnamese street vendors, including bahn mi, iced Vietnamese and egg coffee, King Crab Banh Canh (made with Tapioca noodles), Bun Bo Hue, Ha Noi-style pho, Bun Cha Hanoi, and more. There will be about 18 different dishes on the menu once the restaurant is fully open for dine-in in early September. For now, you can order from a limited takeout menu for takeout featuring Banh Mi, Bun Cha Hanoi, Hu Tieu My Tho, Com Chien Cua, and Vietnamese iced coffee. An accessibly grab-and-go Banh Mi station (with Vietnamese subs made using French cognac-infused foie gras pâté) in the front area of Ngon is already proving to be a popular draw.
Ngon’s liquor license is understandably delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but the restaurant does plan to eventually serve martinis and a rum Vietnamese iced coffee. For now, you can try one of the refreshers on the limited menu, including a Butterfly Pea made with mango and passion fruit. As the for the egg coffee, Nguyen says that they make theirs with espresso, condensed milk, and whipped egg yolk on top.