1574 California St, San Francisco, CA | Directions 9410937.790780 -122.420223
The focus is on the food at this Polk Gulch Vietnamese outpost, where the bare-bones decor matches the simplicity of the menu.. Don't go for pho--you won't find it here. This also isn't the place if you're looking for bahn mi, those delicious French-influenced sandwiches you find at many Vietnamese cafes. This shoebox-sized restaurant with seating for less than 20 serves almost exclusively meat and rice, but diners come from all over town for their signature dish: five-spiced roast chicken atop a mountain of rice covered in a meaty, gravy-like sauce, and a few bites of salad for good measure. Sure, you can order roast pork instead of chicken, and there's even a few options for vegetarians (the noodle salad with imperial rolls is fresh and filling). But the limited menu proves that you really only need to do one thing--if you do it well.
Consistently great tasting food. Jan 2008. Over the years this local restaurant has become one of my favorites. If you are craving delicious and most filling lunch and dinner this is the place to come. The service is fantastic and I feel right at home here. I highly recommend this place and would invite Rachael Ray to come over and feature this place in SF for under $40 a day TV show. The two chicken halves with meat sauce is my favorite. - SF Native Since 1990
Best little hole in the wall resturant in the city. I have been going here for the past 5 years and love it! The owner (I believe the name is Katie) is very nice, freindly and fun. Yes its a bit small, ok really small but there are a lot of regulars that seem like family. Wed. night is birthday night..if any of the reg. have a birthday they bring in birthday cake and sometimes share with everyone there. The number 5 is simply 2 much food to eat but you have to get it. Everything on 5 is wonderful. But then I could eat a big bowl of rice and meat sauce and be happy with that too. Very fair prices, huge portions. One of my favorite places to eat.
It's a Hole in the Wall, but It sure fills up the Soul seeking Comfort Food.
After passing it by many many times and reading all the raving reviews, I finally decided to give it a try myself. And Cordon Bleu did NOT disappoint! Some of the reviews have commented about the poor or slow service -- but c'mon, given that it IS a hole in the wall place with a strong following, crowds are a given. Since I went earlier in the evening, there weren't that many people and it only took about 10~15minutes to pick up my food packed to go. The ladies behind the counter were nice and friendly. As for the food, my order of #5 was lip-smakin' good and filled my stomach to its content on a cold brisk evening. Everything -- the salad, the imperial roll, the beef, the chicken, and the meat sauce over rice -- was quite satisfying.
The food isn't anything special, but the combo is perfect for anyone looking for a good hearty comfort eat. The only thing I'd change is to have the meat sauce over brown rice. But then again, Cordon Bleu never claimed to be a "healthy" eat...
Best hole in the wall. Ever.. My friends and I have been going here weekly for a while now. The service isn't the most prompt but the food is unmatched. Be prepared for a little bit of a wait - but it is definitely worth it. I take everyone here.
Don't be afraid if you've never tried it, the food here is great and you won't even notice that you've opened your wallet. I love stepping in here and catching a film at the Lumiere.
The 5 spiced chicken or the grilled meat kabobs won't steer you wrong. The meatsauce on the rice is unexplainable and deliciously addicting. The imperial rolls can be a little chewy but I secretly love that. They ahve great vegetarian fare as well but the grilling meats might be hard for the serious veggie to take.
Friendly, smokey, hot, and perfect for fast food that isn't garbage from a chain restaurant.
True Hole in the Wall!. I like this place because of the simplicity of everything - the menu, the decor. The food has a home cooked feel and is great cheap comfort food. I personally like eating in and watching the food being cooked but lots of people do take-out because it is such a tiny place. From memory this place is cash only (this may have changed so correct me if I am wrong) but there a Walgreens around the corner on Polk that you can get cash out from. Also there is a WM atm on the corner.
Great cheap eats, but that's it. After reading everyone's reviews about this place, I think I went in with expectations that were too high. The hole in the wall setting was just fine for me. The food was not as good as I was hoping for. I did notice that my #5 plate was not cooked exactly like those for other people because a different person was cooking after my food was prepared. Everything had good flavor but the textures weren't that great. My Imperial roll was too chewy and my chicken meat was dry. I liked the rice with tomato/pork sauce. The #5 plate with no beverage came out to $8.03 total excluding tip. I shouldn't be surprised to keep finding SF restaurants where the owners speak Cantonese despite the cuisine being Vietnamese. I'll definitely go back again, but with adjusted expectations that this place is for good cheap eats and that's about it.
Huge Portions - Homestyle Cooking. Ok, first I'll say this place is a total hole in the wall but don't let that scare you. I grew up on rice and meat dishes and this place is the bomb. The 5spice chicken or beef kabobs are great. You have to get the meat sauce on the rice. Even the cabbage/coleslawy veggie is tasty. I usually get take out after a big workout - the portions are huge; plenty of meat and rice! If it suits you, eat at the counter. Definitely worth a visit!! Dirt cheap as well.
No one can go just once.... I'd been walking by Cordon Bleu for years, and was always skeptical. I finally decided to give it a shot with my adventurous lady friend. We bellied up to the bar and went for broke on a #5, which offers a nice sized portion of everything on offer. Wow, color me impressed! The shishkabob, sublime. The meat sauce on rice, hearty and delicious. The 5-spice chicken, "Slap yo mama good!" The imperial rolls, best in the city. The country salad, refreshing and simple. Oh, then there are the specials... the noodle salad is the best example of a bun I've tasted. The pork chops are wonderfully spiced and satisfying. Since I first tried it, I have been coming back every week.
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