On Thursday, the owners of Hanoi House are opening an offshoot of their beloved East Village restaurant that's just steps away from it. The new spot, Hanoi Soup Shop, has a handful of seats and a succinct menu, at once featuring a selection of the restaurant's signature standout dishes and a rotating selection of daily specials, such as lemongrass chicken banh mi and lamb rib kho.
Since opening in early 2017, Hanoi House has been heralded for its take on Vietnamese fare, offering up exceptional beef pho, Bun Cha, and spicy octopus dishes, among others. (The chef who first helmed the restaurant, John Nguyen, has since parted ways with owners Sara Leveen and Ben Lowell).
Hanoi House has been packed night after night practically since they opened their doors, but the overwhelming success also made it impossible for them to also accommodate the many delivery requests they received. "We could barely do takeout orders," Leveen tells Gothamist. The proprietors started scouting out spots to do a takeout counter pop-up, whose opening would coincide with the colder months (for many, the peak time to stay in and order a steaming bowl of pho). "The idea originally was that we’d at least be able to deliver our pho," she explains. Then the space two doors down from them opened up, and they went for it, she says.
Over time the Hanoi Soup Shop concept shifted, too. It isn't just a place where someone can order a takeaway meal or delivery around lunchtime. They can enjoy their food there, too.
Hanoi Soup Shop is helmed by executive chef Daniel Le, formerly the co-executive chef at Hanoi House (Albert Nguyen, also a former co-executive chef at the restaurant, is being promoted to executive chef at Hanoi House). Hanoi Soup Shop will have a test kitchen ethos with rotating daily specials. Unlike Hanoi House, Hanoi Soup Shop has more of an eye on lunch fare, and "lighter, healthier, more vegetarian" options that people have been requesting next door, Leveen says. Think vegetarian broths, summer rolls and papaya salads, Hanoi's wonderful egg coffee on tap, and fruit shakes.
Meanwhile, carnivores can relish in the shop's venerable beef pho, available with their choice of meat (at Hanoi House, the beef pho automatically comes with filet mignon and brisket).
Hanoi Soup Shop is located at 115 St. Marks Place, in the East Village. It's opening from 11:30 to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated that Daniel Le and Albert Nguyen were currently co-executive chefs at Hanoi House.