Hello Vietnam Opens This Weekend
Popular Nam Son Bakery Chef Helms New Restaurant in Northern Liberties “Hello Vietnam” to Offer Varied Menu
Hello Vietnam, located at 722 North Second Street (near Brown St.), is scheduled to celebrate its opening with a lion dance ceremony on Saturday, December 7 at noon. The BYOB restaurant will offer a varied menu with prices for appetizers will ranging from about $6 – $10 and for entrees from $7 – 14, plus fresh squeezed juices and smoothies. Hours are Monday – Saturday, 10am-10pm; Sunday 9am-9pm.
The Northern Liberties Business Improvement District is pleased to announce the planned opening of Hello Vietnam, a new restaurant helmed by the chef of the two-time “Best of Philly” winner Nam Son Bakery, which closed earlier this year in South Philadelphia amidst redevelopment. The chef, Tri Tan, will recreate her famed sauces and homemade tofu, Banh Mi and Pho as well as an assortment of fish, meat, poultry and vegan Vietnamese dishes. She will be assisted in leading the kitchen by chef Tony Ta, formerly sous chef at Morimoto in Old City and most recently executive chef at Smith & Wollensky on Rittenhouse Square.
The chefs’ goal is to fuse the traditional and the modern, introducing Northern Liberties to recipes that have been kept for generations while using fresh, locally sourced produce and emphasizing health awareness.
Tri Tan’s daughter, Julie Dinh, is one of the three Asian-American women entrepreneurs behind Hello Vietnam, and for Ms. Dinh the restaurant is an opportunity to bring healthy food to the city that gave her sanctuary when she and her family fled the destruction of the Vietnam War as so-called “boat people” in the late 1970s.
“We landed in Kensington with almost nothing,” Ms. Dinh says, “and my parents were able to make a good life for us in America. I see Hello Vietnam as my chance to give something back to the people of Philadelphia.”
Part of her mission, Ms. Dinh says, is to introduce customers to alkaline water, which the kitchen will use to soak the restaurant’s ingredients for purity and flavor. Hello Vietnam will host regular free meals where attendees will receive a seminar on the purported benefits of higher-PH water. Ms. Dinh encourages future customers to bring empty bottles and take the water home for drinking, cleaning, or cosmetic use.
The executive director of the Northern Liberties BID expressed her pleasure that Hello Vietnam would build on a trend of health-oriented food spots in the neighborhood, where a GIANT Heirloom market just opened and where the vegan Blackbird Pizza and Soy Café have gained loyal followings.
“We see that locals want fresh food they feel good about eating,” said Kristine Kennedy, the BID’s executive director. “Hello Vietnam strengthens Northern Liberties as a food destination while also offering neighborhood residents yet another solid dining option.”
The Northern Liberties Business Improvement District was formed in 2018 to provide supplements to the municipal services of the City of Philadelphia; maintain a safe, clean and vibrant commercial district for the benefit of the residents, users, and owners within the district, and to citizens of Philadelphia and the region; to create opportunities for the business and residential communities to come together to make improvements to the district; and develop and implement programs and services that ensure that Northern Liberties continues to be a desirable place to live, work, shop, invest and visit. For more information, see explorenorthernliberties.org.