The Lunch Lady

4.6
96 reviews
CAN$30 and under
Vietnamese
Since 1995, Mrs. Nguyen Thi Thanh, most famously known as the legendary lunch lady, has served rotating daily noodle soups to Saigon locals and world travellers. 

“It’s like discovering new neighbourhoods every few mouthfuls.”
- Anthony Bourdain on Mrs. Thanh’s soups, No Reservations

It has always been a dream of hers to share her food with the world. The moment she met Victoria it was an instant connection—two “lunch ladies” with the same passion. Now, Victoria’s Five Elements restaurant turns a new leaf, becoming the home of Lunch Lady in Vancouver. The humble and inspiring story of Lunch Lady takes its next steps in a city that champions culinary diversity in hopes of introducing the true flavours of Vietnam.

Safety precautions

Cleaning & Sanitising
  • Surfaces sanitised between seatings
  • Common areas deep cleaned daily
  • Digital, disposable or sanitised menu provided
  • Sanitiser or wipes provided for customers
  • Contactless payment available
Physical distancing
  • Limited number of seated diners
  • Distancing maintained in common areas
  • Extra space between tables
Protective equipment
  • Waitstaff wear masks
  • Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
Screening
  • Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
What 96 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.6based on recent ratings
4.6
Food
4.7
Service
4.4
Ambience
4.2
Value
Noise · Moderate
95% of people would recommend it to a friend
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DV
DavidV
Vancouver
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

Carpaccio, veg spring rolls, garlic noodles - all great

HM
HillaryM
Vancouver
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

The food was absolutely amazing and the service was incredible as well. We thoroughly enjoyed our dinner and cannot wait to come back!

KM
KanaM
Vancouver
4 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Everything we ordered so good as always!

JB
JosB
1 review
Dined on February 19, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food and drinks were delicious and the service was really good

MG
MicheleG
Pittsburgh
1 review
Dined on February 19, 2021
Overall4Food4Service3Ambience5

Food is delicious and cool ambience. It’s a shame our server was not on par with the rest of the experience. However definitely recommend and will be back!

S
Susan
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on February 16, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The store was amazing, the food came out really fast!

GK
GunjanK
Portland
4 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience2

Food and service was amazing. The bone marrow was delicious. Most places you don’t get a lot of marrow but the 2 pieces had a lot!

ML
MishiLS
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food was delicious and ideal for sharing! I would definitely recommend sharing so you can try more of the menu. Three starters, one main, and a dessert was perfect for two people. The ambience was on point with the theme of the restaurant, allowing us to enjoy the food even more. Our server was very attentive, anticipating all our needs; we didn't have to call on her once. They were also great with team service; every staff member, including the hostess, walking past our table checked for and cleared empty plates promptly. 100% would recommend and return in the future :)

BW
BenitaW
1 review
Dined on February 14, 2021
Overall3Food3Service3Ambience3

Decent food, they try to upsell you, adding Chinese donut to my beef pho was an extra $4! And it's not even the full donut, be warned. Jasmine tea is also an extra charge. It's a bit ridiculous. I'll stick to my mom and pop hole in the wall but good food for good value places, wanted to try this place for the hype, now I've tried and won't be going back.

LW
vipLindaW
Vancouver
5 reviews
Dined on February 12, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Parking was easy within a block away in the neighbourhood. Really liked the vibe when we approached the mural on the side of the restaurant. Service was friendly and efficient and the server explained everything. She was even mindful of how we were cooking with the hot pot. We tried as many of the dishes that a friend earlier recommended and that the server did. Our favourite were the garlic noodles, the steak and the to die for mochi dessert. My husband and I will be back for sure to try more dishes and the churros dessert! PS My only small complaint is that we sat at the back and the back door was used frequently which caused a cold draft.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Vancouver
4 reviews
Dined on February 7, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Great food and ambience! Best to make reservations to avoid the lines.

L
Lala
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Tried the lunch and dinner menu and every single thing we ordered was delicious. My favourite was the pho marrow. So so so good. Service was amazing too.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on February 6, 2021
Overall4Food4Service5Ambience5

Food is great,but not too surprise. Overall I rate 4 star. Good place to try something new.

PT
PeterT
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food was outstanding. It also came fast and the servers were so accommodating!

B
Brian
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing food, atmosphere. COVID rules are enforced strongly. Drink menu is phenomenal. Highly recommend

J
Jess
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Really great food. The first place in Vancouver that genuinely has authentic Vietnamese flavours.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on February 5, 2021
Overall2Food4Service1Ambience4

The bartender was incredibly slow. We ordered our drinks... then ordered our food. All our food came and we finished it before our drinks arrived.

B
Brooklynlovee
New York Area
1 review
Dined on February 5, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious and fresh I loved the experience! Really enjoyed how the servers told you how to eat the dishes! Can’t wait to return.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Vancouver
18 reviews
Dined on January 30, 2021
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

Definitely one of my favorite restaurant! Everything is delicious!!! Must try the garlic noodles!!

J
vipJocat
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on January 28, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Delicious and creative food! Loved the pho marrow and steak luk lak dishes. Everything was cooked perfectly and so much flavour!

E
Evelyn
1 review
Dined on January 27, 2021
Overall2Food1Service2Ambience1

The food wasn't impressive for the cost. The tables were too loud and squished for our comfort during COVID.

S
Sarah
Vancouver
3 reviews
Dined on January 24, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

My 10 year old son brought me here for a "date". We shared three items, (corn, tofu, pho) and we had leftovers to take home. It was delicious. The vibe was great. We had an excellent time.

JF
vipJudyF
Milwaukee
19 reviews
Dined on January 22, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Covid birthday celebration made that much better by the conscientious staff at The Linch Lady. Every single protocol followed and it felt very safe and clean. Food was obviously the reason we ventured out in the first place and our dinner was spectacular. Thanks for providing a wonderful dining experience.

JM
JasmineM
Vancouver
4 reviews
Dined on January 19, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

LOVE LOVE LOVE! this restaurant. Everything that was recommended was outstanding!

B
Brennagh
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2021
Overall5Food5Service3Ambience4

Tasty food, creative drink menu, and a fun atmosphere. My only complaint would be that we waited 30 min despite having made a reservation. Once seated, we kind of felt like we were being rushed out the door. That being said, I will definitely be back!

ML
MsLi
1 review
Dined on January 17, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Came here for dinner and food was super delicious! The portion of each dish is not that big which allows us to try more dishes! Service was great! They do have dining time limit for each reservation. Will definitly come back again!

DP
DesireeP
1 review
Dined on January 16, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

food was AMAZING, i’m still talking about it daily. the lemon grass tofu was INCREDIBLE. I absolutely loved the lemongrass sour as well as the churros for dessert.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on January 15, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing food, atmosphere, server. Can’t wait to come back.

H
Hannah
1 review
Dined on January 14, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Food, ambience, and service were all top notch! Definitely will be coming back!

M
Megs
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Food, drinks and service were excellent. Celebrated a birthday and they brought us some shots. All the staff was friendly and knowledgeable. The restaurant seemed quite bright for our late dinner, so if anything I would suggest lowering the lights in the evening. But even with that, it was a perfect evening. Thank you!

MS
MarjorieS
1 review
Dined on January 13, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The food was amazing, the service impeccable. Staff are there to assist with any questions you have (even silly ones), make suggestion and ensure you have wonderful dining experience.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Foods were excellent, authentic Vietnamese with a touch of creativity from the chefs. Luke, our server, was very friendly and attentive. We’ll definitely coming back. Highly recommended.

d
dane
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2021
Overall3Food3Service4Ambience5

I was unimpressed with the food and value, particularly given the quality of the numerous authentic Viet restaurants in Vancouver.

The spring rolls were disappointing, as were the beef noodles. I'm wishing that I had ordered the daily soup special, as it looked quite good, but don't know that I'll be back to try it. A cocktail, appetizer, and entrée for two plus tip was over $100. At this price-point, I was expecting something more innovative and better executed. The ambience was good, but tables in the middle were very small and unpleasantly close together (made possible by plexi barriers and probably required to maintain physical distance with the tables on the other side).

OT
OpenTable Diner
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2021
Overall4Food4Service5Ambience5

Good but small portions

OT
OpenTable Diner
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on January 9, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

First time trying Lunch Lady, and it did not disappoint! Will be back again to try new food.

Amazing: crispy prawns and beef carpaccio
Very good: pork skewers and fried garlic noddles
Good: churros with coffee ice cream

6
604techgal
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on January 8, 2021
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience3

The pho is really delicious and the drinks were yummy. It's quite pricey for the size and value. I wasn't expecting our bill for two to be $150. We did order the snail and bone marrow which were quite expensive.

C
vipChanel
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on January 8, 2021
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience5

I would rate them overall at a 5. The only deduction for a star was that we had a reservation and were texted 10 minutes prior to the reservation to say that our table was ready. When we arrived exactly at our reservation time they said they were not ready for us that someone else would need to leave before we could be seated. We had to wait an additional 25 minutes outside in the cold because ‘our table was almost ready’.
Horrible start to a great meal.

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
Vancouver
18 reviews
Dined on January 7, 2021
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

Lovely restaurant, delicious food! Definitely going back to try more items on the menu!!

N
Naomi
Seattle
1 review
Dined on January 7, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience3

The staff was soo helpful and have great recommendations! Cocktails were amazing!

JB
JamesB
1 review
Dined on January 6, 2021
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing food and excellent drinks! Service was friendly, will be going back for sure.

FAQs

The Lunch Lady does offer delivery in partnership with Uber Eats.

The Lunch Lady is rated 4.6 stars by 96 OpenTable diners.

Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.