Bun Mam Soc Trang

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Pho, bun bo hue,and bun rieu are probably the most popular and commonly known  Vietnamese soups in the Bay Area.  Bun Mam Soc Trang probably serves up one of the few bowls of bun mam, also known as bun ngoc leo,  in Northern California.  The dish originates from the Soc Trang province in Vietnam's Mekong delta.
Bun mam is a fermented fish soup, but not overly pungent.  The soup has an every so slightly sour taste to it.  Overall, the broth is very light and fresh tasting.  The noodles are similar to noodles found in bun bo hue (white round slightly thick noodles).  I ordered the special combo which comes with shrimp, pieces of fish, slices of pork, and crispy roast pork.  You can tell they use fresh, good quality ingrediants.
The plate of herbs and vegetables for the bun mam.  Notice the banana flower!
If you like spicy, don't forget to add their homemade chili paste to the soup.  This sauce was incredible.  I'd advise to put one spoonful and do a taste test before adding more, the heat builds.  I found that three scoops was ideal for me.  They should sell this sauce by the bottle!
On the weekends they offer a small dessert with each order.  Today's was taro with sticky rice, coconut milk.  A nice way to end the meal.  
This place is a must try.  So far the bun mam here is one of the best dishes (and discoveries) of 2012 that I've had.

Address:                         Bun Mam Soc Trang
                                               1326 E 18th St.
                                               Oakland, CA 

Type:                                 Vietnamese/soup/casual

Popular chomps:     bun mam soc trang
                                                bun bo hue      
Chomp worthy:        bun mam soc trang               

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