Rice Paper Scissors 2.0 Recap

April 13, 2011

Last Thursday’s Rice Paper Scissors was perfect for many reasons. We set up in Arc Metalworks, a metal workshop in the Mission that had a roll-up garage door that reminded us of auto-shops in Vietnam. The rain finally stopped and we were blessed with the warmest day that’s hit SF in recent times – a perfect day for green papaya salad and coconut sorbet. Our restaurant was set-up with Christmas lights, little red stools and makeshift cardboard box tables outside the shop on 20th Street.

And you guys came! Over 200 folks came through in the span of three hours to enjoy our South Vietnamese feast: BBQ pork with homemade charcuterie and pate banh mis, mung bean sticky rice, and savory imperial rolls. We loved seeing groups of friends and families hanging out together on little red stools, squirting limes into their snail pho and lounging around until it got dark. We are so humbled.
We served up an ambitious nine-item menu chock-full of our favorite dishes from Saigon and the Delta region, containing some of our fondest memories of Vietnamese food. Katie brought to the table the thousand-year-old egg dish, served with pickled shallots and silken tofu.
It was a dish she became enamored with during her Vietnam trip – she fondly recalled seeing locals eating it with beers, so she ordered it by pointing to the other patrons (because she couldn’t speak Vietnamese). She loved it so much she had the waiter write down the dish for her underneath a drawing she made of it in her travel journal.
The banh beo (water fern cake) was something I grew up eating at family parties. Whenever it appeared on the buffet table, I was always the first to stuff my face with the small rice flour pancakes topped with dried shrimp, fried shallots, and green onions, sprinkled with a savory fish sauce concoction. It wasn’t unusual for my dad to order extra to accommodate my cravings.

We were fortunate to have wonderful food friends to cook with us in our renegade restaurant that night. PizzaHacker took orders, while Soul Cocina managed the snail pho. GraffEats handed out dishes that forageSF expertly expedited. Sour Flourdonated a baking rack that made everything run smoothly, while Jilli Ice Cream lent an extra hand with tweets and making sandwiches. Even Will, the graphic designer behind those ph-unny posters, did a great job arranging our appetizers.
Thanks to everyone who came to help out and those who came to enjoy Vietnamese street food on a rare warm San Francisco evening. We hope to see you again at our next RPS, coming late April.
Sign up for our email list for advance notice or follow us on Twitter at @kitchensidecar and @littleknock.
Additional thank you’s: Jessica, Phil, Megha, Andrew, Amanda, Will #2, James & Meg of Arc Metalworks, Brad, KasiaKasey & the Evernote team, and all the cool people who helped spread the word and showed up with their friends!
Photos by faketv

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