After reading various discussions on Wroclaw Expats forum a while ago, it had become clear that people are dissatisfied with the lack of authentic Asian restaurants in the city. If you look more closely however, you'll find there are actually a few around, such as Bar Mekong, located on Bogusławskiego street.
While Bar Mekong is admittedly anything but grandiose, it's difficult to argue the Vietnamese run restaurant isn't the real deal – the staff are clearly Vietnamese, and more importantly, the kitchen is too.
Like many budget Vietnamese restaurants in major cities, Bar Mekong have cut back on the decor and rental costs amongst other things, handing the savings back to the customer in the shape of rock bottom prices.
Evidently, that has an affect on the look and feel of the venue, which is pretty much bereft of any character whatsoever. The bog standard tables and chairs don't even match up to Ikea's cheapest offerings, while the fake paintings on the wall do little to bring a bit of life into the place.
That said, dining in plush surroundings isn't what Bar Mekong is about. What we're looking for is a decent stomach filling Vietnamese meal that's done in the proper way – and Bar Mekong does exactly that. On our visit we ordered a basic egg-fried rice with chicken and vegetables, which cost a measly 13zl. It might not look the most appealing of dishes, but this was just as good as your average Vietnamese takeaway you'd order back home, only here you're paying half the price.
When ordering at the bar you can easily catch a glimpse of the kitchen, where a young Chinaman is hard at work franticly knocking up rice and noodle dishes on a searingly hot wok. It's not a sight you see everyday in Wroclaw, and its also refreshing to be in a Vietnamese venue that's so transparent about what goes on the kitchen.
If you're looking for something to wash down your meal, aside from the European soft drinks Bar Mekong also sell imported canned fruit juices from the far east.
What we ultimately have here is a no frills venue that delivers properly spiced Vietnamese dishes at great prices, making Bar Mekong an ideal spot for a cheap lunch. If you're looking for somewhere for a romantic dinner however, you'd be well advised to steer clear.
Mekong Oriental Bar, ul. Bogusławskiego 29