I checked out the soft opening of Good Girl Dinette Thursday night, and it seems like a promising addition to Highland Park, which has few non-Hispanic food options. My camera battery failed so photos will have to come another time. The Vietnamese comfort food concept was interesting, mostly Vietnamese but with a few diner twists like coconut bread pudding and chicken curry pot pie. Here's a few notes I left on Chowhound:
Owner/chef Diep Tran founded Blue Hen in Eagle Rock, which I had never tried. Good Girl puts a little twist on straight-up Vietnamese food, giving it a "diner" twist. The space is modern and airy, just down the street from Antigua Bread in the heart of Highland Park. Right now they're serving an abbreviated menu while they get their sea legs. We started with crispy rice cakes with scallion tofu ($4.50), a nice light appetizer with good soy/sesame oil flavor. The diner side was represented by two pot pies ($10) -- we had the cauliflower curry which was indeed comfort food, with a flaky biscuit crust and mild vegetarian filling. They were serving either vegetarian or chicken pho ($9), and we tried the vegetarian, which could use another jolt of flavor. But it's pretty hard to make good pho without beef, so that wasn't too surprising. Dessert was a really nice round of coconut bread pudding with whipped cream, not heavy or overly sweet like so many bread puddings. There will be some meatier offerings on the expanded menu, like beef stew and braised pork. The closest comparison is Viet Noodle Bar in Atwater, but prices are a bit more reasonable the food is somewhat heartier.
Banh mi are $7 but they come with fries or slaw, so that seems reasonable.
Good Girl Dinette
110 N. Ave. 56