Late night delight

Hoa Phat chef Gat Gieng prepares fried rice.

Hoa Phat chef Gat Gieng prepares fried rice.

Photo By David Robert

Hoa Phat Vietnamese-Chinese Restaurant

440-C North Virginia St.
Reno, NV 89501

Chaotic downtown Reno provides the perfect atmosphere for Hoa Phat Vietnamese-Chinese Restaurant—busy streets, bright lights, loud noise and people everywhere. I felt like I was in Chinatown when I walked in the front door.

The windows are decorated with Vietnamese lettering, and the large dining room inside has plenty of room for large parties and families. Open until midnight Sunday through Thursday and until 3 in the morning on Friday and Saturday, Hoa Phat offers a huge selection of Chinese and Vietnamese delights for this 24-hour town’s hungry people.

Like no other city I have lived in, Reno has embraced Vietnamese cuisine. We already have many good Vietnamese restaurants in town, and there are more to come. Once people get over the language barrier, they find that this food is great tasting and healthy. With pho—the Vietnamese soup full of meat and fresh vegetables—as the main staple at Hoa Phat, I can see why many health-conscious eaters would prefer this light cuisine to burgers and fried foods that are heavy in fat and carbs.

My date Cherie and I love Vietnamese food, so we stopped by on a warm evening. Both of us were hungry and thirsty. I ordered the young coconut juice with coconut jelly ($3.95), and Cherie ordered the salty lemonade ($2.95). These cool beverages were awesome. I could tell that Kimi, the owner, was proud to serve them. The chilled Vietnamese refreshments were the highlight of our meal.

As we sipped our drinks, we checked out the large menu. There are more than 100 items from which to choose. Luckily, we have a bit of experience eating at Vietnamese restaurants, so it was easy for us to narrow down our decisions. If Vietnamese cuisine is new to you, it might take awhile to come to a conclusion.

Cherie wanted Chinese food, so she ordered the combination plate with hot and sour soup, pot stickers, Kung Pao chicken and chow mein noodles ($6.50). I went for the Vietnamese, ordering the flame-broiled pork sandwich #1 ($2.99) and the flame-broiled pork, shrimp and imperial rolls over vermicelli noodles #57 ($7.95). The food arrived quickly after we ordered. Cherie liked her hot and sour soup but said the rest of the combination plate was just OK. My pork sandwich was delicious—this is always one of my favorites. It comes on a French roll with barbecued pork, fresh carrots, cucumber and cilantro—yummy. The noodle dish was tasty, too, but the pork was a little tough and chewy, so I just ate around it.

Since Hoa Phat recently opened under new management, they are still developing and fine tuning their flavors. But I think it will soon become a locals’ favorite spot, especially because the hours of operation coincide with the off hours of casino employees and of those staying up late in downtown Reno.