A friend of mine talked me into lunch one day at Long Thanh, a Chinese and Vietnamese Restaurant near 71st and Binford. Before I say anything else I’m going to save you some headache; the menu is quite extensive and you may find yourself overwhelmed with the amount of options… get the soup. (You’re welcome.)
Luckily for me, my friend who’d made a weekly ritual of Saturday afternoon soup wasted no time and ordered for me. I took one sip of my heaping bowl of piping hot chicken and rice-noodle soup and immediately felt as if I was suddenly becoming Superman. Yes, it’s well-known that chicken soup is good for what ails you, but this had something extra special. Perhaps it was the handful of bean sprouts, which I learned contains more vitamin C than an orange.
“Oh my goodness,” I exclaimed to my friend, “How did you find out about this soup!?”
He let me in on a little secret that I will now and forever carry with me when I go out to explore new cultural restaurants:
“Ask the old men what they’re eating…that’s what you want to get,” he explained.
I took a look around the restaurant. Everyone was eating the soup. There are 16 different soups to choose from, but I recommend the chicken soup (#20 on the menu). In it you’ll find the magical ingredients of chicken, rice noodles, onions, garlic, cilantro and parsley. Basil, jalapenos, bean sprouts and limes come on the side – so you can play around with it and make it your own. (Yes, as an adult I’m saying you should play with your food. No judgment.) Add the jalapenos and a bit of sriracha if you’d like to spice it up!
This soup is of a generous portion. If you’re able to make it to the bottom of the bowl, you’ll find a beautiful piece of cultural artwork. If not, don’t forget to ask for a to-go!
5707 E 71st St.
Indianapolis, IN 46220