Friday, November 09, 2007

Phở Sure

Note: Much like Tom Petty, who supposedly wrote Free Fallin’ so he could use “Ventura Boulevard” in a song, I write about phở so I can type the character “ở”.


(My actual soup not pictured.)

Perhaps as a result of the cold weather, I had an intense craving yesterday afternoon for a steaming bowl of phở. Believing there was nothing convenient to me, I still Googled “pho 20901”, just to be sure. Lo and behold, as a result of divine providence a phở joint named Pho An had just recently opened up in White Oak Shopping center. How did I not know about this before now? (I realize there’s Pho-Hiep Hoa downtown, but I’m not a huge fan of that place.)

The place is clean and well-lit, if a bit basic. They have a flat-panel television mounted above the register that they oddly seem to only use for playing mp3s. A review on this site states that “Pho An is fast and simple a hawker stand masquerading as a restaurant”, and I wouldn’t disagree – but that’s a good thing in my mind.

I was fixated on soup, so I completely ignored the rest of the menu, focusing on the large number of bovine parts that one could elect to have included in their bowl. After ruling out any options that involved tripe or tendons, I settled on something with more conventional types of beef.

To accompany my soup, I ordered a Vietnamese iced coffee, which is brought out in two components: a tall glass with ice and a coffee cup with a cool metal lid that had a mini percolator mounted on it. I can’t say that I’ve seen this before, but maybe I don’t get out enough. Underneath the coffee was hidden a generous portion of sweetened condensed milk. When mixed together with the ice, it resulted in a glass of refreshing caffeinated goodness.

The soup itself was good (and cheap), although I wish they offered the Bún bò Huế variety that I always order at Nam Viet. It’s not the best phở I’ve ever tasted, but the location is very convenient for me, so I can see myself becoming a regular – at least for the winter months. I do wish it had a more amusing/profane name, however.

As a total non sequitur, I present for your enjoyment this photo I took during my recently-completed trip:



(That’s a goat, in case you were wondering.)



12 comments:

adb said...

For me, a basic indicator of quality of a Vietnamese restaurant is whether the Vietnamese iced coffee comes with a glass of ice and a cup of hot coffee still dripping through the steel gadget. If they brew, mix, and ice the coffee in advance, well, phởởey on them is what I say in that case, for they are lazy-boneses.

JJ said...

http://www.cafepress.com/phoreal.50774047

Sligo said...

I think you could only pull that shirt off if you were Vietnamese.

Anonymous said...

Sligo, I'm gonna guess that you were in India? Was it any match for Bombay Gaylord?

Sligo said...

Nope, not India, but close...

Anonymous said...

"(I realize there’s Pho-Hiep Hoa downtown, but I’m not a huge fan of that place.)"

I'm a huge Pho fan as well. I agree about Pho-Hiep Hoa downtown, so I always go to their Wheaton restaurant of the same name. Its basic and you're in and out. I always get the large bowl with "chin"= thin sliced lean brisket.

Another place I like but haven't been to in a while is A & J Restaurant on Rockville Pike. They have a great soup with mustard greens and noodles that is hot. Not normally a mustard green eater but this is good. Cash only as I recall.

As an aside, went to the new Fuds in SS and it was horrid. I love the Fuds in Rockville. There, when you order the hamburger, out comes a great flavorful burger that is not pre-formed. The new SS Fuds sent out basically a larger version of a McD's burger, clearly pre-formed, probably frozen at one point and completely tasteless. I ate a few bites, chucked it in the trash and left. Be wary of that place...not serving real Fuddruckers food.

Anonymous said...

Check out Pho Real the restaurant at route 29 and Briggs Sheney rd. It's good fo real

mcknif said...

So was the goat for dinner, or some other purpose.

Sligo said...

I assume it was for dinner. There are roadside goat stands all over.

Bonifant more sinister than Thayer said...

Re: the goat. I recently saw this in a children's book.
http://tinyurl.com/2jpa3u

Better not to ask questions.

Anonymous said...

Poor goat.

Anonymous said...

The Vietnamese restaurant downtown, next to Murray's Auto Clinic, has been closed due to a fire. Doesn't look like it will reopen any time soon.