In a previous post I ranted against a local "Subways" shop as a prime example for bad food in Darmstadt. I want to share an example for good food today.
Asian restaurants are often laden with kitschy decoration and the menu is mainstreamed to comfort the local taste. Also you have the same dishes with only small variations everywhere. Traditional style cooking is rarely found anywhere.
A very nice example of stylish interior and excellent cooking is the "Ngoc Lan", small Vietnamese restaurant located a bit outside the city centre. You find it at the corner of Bismarkstraße and Steubenplatz, see the map embedded below.
We come here once every while and the quality of the food is always great. The cooking is very traditional compared to the standard issue Asia Kim or Dong Dong in more prominent areas of the town. Well cooked, spicy and with fresh herbs, the menu lists many unique meals very different from the usual "fried noodles with chicken/pork/beef". A selection of well mixed, fruity Cocktails can be had as well.
The single room is bright and nicely decorated, calm in minimalist way but not frugal. Go there after dark to experience the full effect of the lighting. There is parking space behind the restaurant, about 15 places in the lot. No need to make a reservation, in fact we never found more than a couple of tables occupied whenever we came there. Which is a pity, because it means it won't stay open for much longer. So go there and enjoy before the place closes for good.