Dip's Grill is one of my newer go-to places for lunch with co-workers. It touts itself as "Asian fusion," which here really means "burgers and fries for your unadventurous friends and Vietnamese and Chinese food for you."
The various iced teas are really good here, and refills are plentiful and free. Featured above are sweet potato fries ($4) and sliders ($7) in regular hamburger and pulled pork versions on Hawaiian rolls. The spam and egg sliders are "too weird" for some of my friends.
Sometimes I wonder how we are friends.
My co-workers with more expansive palates enjoyed the below dishes with me.
Banh beo -- steamed rice cakes topped with ground dried shrimp and crispy onions served with sauce ($6).
These are usually served in individual hockey puck-sized bowls, so this presentation of a mountain of silver dollar rice discs was quite interesting. I prefer the traditional version. These were not as moist and springy.
Banh xeo -- pan-seared rice crepe filled with pork, shrimp, bean sprouts, and shallots ($7).
Tasty! Nicely crisped outside and warm and savory inside.
Pork belly buns -- braised pork belly, crisp lettuce, and scallions served in steamed buns (four for $7).
Not as good as what you'd find at a real Taiwanese place but I can't complain too much about something that costs $1.75. Take that, momofuku ssam bar.
Xoi chien -- steamed sticky rice with ground pork, shrimp, mushrooms, and onions ($5)
Yummy! Lovely chewiness surrounding a pleasantly seasoned meat blend.
Is Dip's Grill authentic? Many items are the real deal, but, for the most part, the flavors are accessible for the untrained. I'm sure I'll keep coming back because it's not often that I find a place where I can down a bowl of vermicelli while my friends chow on burgers and fries. The clean and sleek decor helps, too.