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By using fresh herbs, lean meats andspices to achieve distinctive flavors,Vietnamese food is one of the world'shealthiest cuisines. To enjoy dishes thatwill fill and nourish you without beingheavy, have lunch or dinner at SaigonCafè in Bluffton, on Fording IslandRoad near Malphrus Road.

Seasoned by delicate fish sauce, garlic,shallots, lemon grass, mint, cilantroand Thai basil leaves, the soups, appetizersand entrees at Saigon Cafe arelong on flavor and short on calories.The entrees include a choice of grilledchicken, pork, or shrimp, served withjasmine rice or vermicelli. The Vietnamesealso have a strong vegetarian traditioninfluenced by Buddhist values.

The condiments and garnishes thataccompany all meals- including mintleaves, bean sprouts and lime wedges-are colorful and arranged in aneye-pleasing manner. Many entrees areserved with chopped egg rolls, crushedroasted peanuts on top and fresh beansprouts on the side.

Saigon Cafe's owner Kevin Phanlearned the restaurant business at hisfamily's Vietnamese eatery in Atlanta, and he employsfamily members in the kitchen in his Blufftonrestaurant. The family is from Saigon, and their foodreflects the culinary style of the country's southernregion including Vietnam's capital.

Southern Vietnam also has been influenced byinternational cuisines including Chinese, Indian,French, and Thai. The French introduced baguettesto the country. Stuffed with Vietnamese ingredients,these sandwiches are a popular fast food in Vietnamcalled b