Best Vietnamese Restaurant

Ba Bar

Ba Bar is likely the only Vietnamese restaurant around where Arcade Fire blasts from the speakers as an impeccably dressed waiter describes the $10 cocktail special. Most offer massive, dirt-cheap bowls of pho and/or hulking banh mi sandwiches, and there's a lot to love about that. But while Pho Bac and the Than Brothers empire have their place and time, every now and then it pays to class things up a bit. Offal can still be found on Ba Bar's Saigon street-food-inspired menu, but so can soups made with duck-leg confit, oxtail, and even escargot. With relatively reasonable prices (only one entrée, the steak frites, costs more than $15), a fun vibe (check out Kung Fu movie night on Fridays after dinner), and some seriously crafty cocktails, the Capitol Hill eatery is the ideal upscale alternative to typical hole-in-the-wall Vietnamese restaurants. KEEGAN HAMILTON 550 12th Ave., 328-2030,

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