I finally get the hoopla about Nam Nam, the casual Vietnamese Noodle Bar under the Les Amis Group. Having been served up the most awesome bowl of pho ever, I maintain the supposition that any restaurant helmed by the Les Amis Group can do no wrong.
For months now, I've been deterred by the ridiculous lines outside the small-ish bistro. But, yesterday evening, my PMS-self craved soupy noodles, and we popped by Raffles City to see if we could get our hands on some pho. Turns out there wasn't a queue in sight at Nam Nam. There were actually empty seats that stayed empty the entire time we were slurping away face-deep in our bowls of pho. So, for people who, like us, hate queuing up for anything, hit this place up from Sunday nights to Tuesday nights. We've noticed that in general, these are the times that the malls, and consequently restaurants located in such malls, are least crowded. Or else, they open real early for breakfast at 8am everyday.
The kitchen service is brisk and churns out food like a well-oiled, highly productive machine, while the wait staff are relatively helpful, if a bit clumsy. The waitress wasn't able to communicate to the couple next to us that the café is semi-self-serviced, but the waiter did unquestioningly change our hot coffee to the iced version, when the Hubs realised that the cashier had taken his order wrongly.
The "Small Plate" Shrimp Paste Lemongrass Skewer ($4.90), a quartet of springy prawn cakes lightly perfumed with aromatic lemongrass for a lively lilt, was indeed teensy. A little forgettable, but this isn't what you're here for anyway.
The Pho Wagyu Beef ($17.90), laced with sheets of fatty beef scalded to a juicy medium rare in a steaming hot beef broth that walked the tight rope of full-bodied and delicate effortlessly, was insanely good. Seriously the best bowl of pho I've ever had.
The Pho Chicken ($7.90), slightly more refined than the beef version, was piled generously with the most tender chicken breast meat ever. This would be excellent as a post-workout meal. A lime wedge in both soups enlivens the stock base.
Nam Nam Noodle Bar
252 North Bridge Road
Raffles City Shopping Centre #B1-46
Open daily from 8am to 9.30pm