Yummy, yummy in my tummy! Republic is one of my favorite places to eat in the city and I always jump at the chance to eat there, mostly because I always suggest it when looking for a restaurant in Union Square. Let me first make one suggestion...eat it there. Taking it to go drastically lessens the enjoyment factor, not only because of the quality of the preparation but the overall ambience of the place as well. With it's hustle and bustle, cafateria-esque seating, to the amazing aroma's eminating from it's open kitchen, Republic has been a standard in Union Square for years. Republic doesn't subscribe to one type of Asian cuisine even though it leans towards Vietnamese, but it's the added little touches that really set this place apart. So today off to lunch I went with something inside me pushing me in that direction...I think it was my stomach. Originally upon entering I thought I would order my usual...Wonton Soup with it's Shrimp, Pork and Vegetable Broth, Wontons, Glass Noodles (always love the sound of that), Cabbage, Chinese Greens, Fried Shallots, Garlic and of course Cilantro. But no! I had to go and try something else because, you know, I gotta write about it. I suppose at some point since the last time I was there they created an Eat-In-Only Lunch Special Bento Box menu that shouted my name the second the menu was placed in front of me. It didn't take long then for me to decide on Bento Box #5, with it's Noodle Salad, Fried Wontons (YES!) and Grilled Pork Chop with Rice served in a very attractive arrangement. I cracked apart my chopsticks and dug in. Oh and I ordered a Ginger Ale, not that that really matters. First off the wontons were fabulous sitting in their spicy sweet sauce (that I later poured on the rice)...there were only 2 but with everything else I had to eat that was plenty. Next up was the Noodle Salad and what's a trip to Republic without eating some noodles...not a trip I say. That was also delicious but the Prok Chop in it's nice little pot was still waiting to be conquered...oink, oink. I am always so amazed at how much I enjoy Vietnamese style Grilled Pork Chops even after eating them hundreds of times (yes hundreds), it's almost like I am eating them for the first time everytime (60% of the time it works everytime....oh nevermind). It's always so great when you frequent a place that it continually offers new and tasty choices while still keeping the old favorites that got you hooked in the first place. Republic is located at 37 Union Square West in between Heartland Brewery and McDonalds...hard to miss. The Bento Box special is offered daily from 11:30 to 5:00pm. Please check out Republic's website, http://www.thinknoodles.com/, to find out more info! You stay classy New York City.