Is it just me, or have pho joints popped up around town like spring-time bunnys? I think I've counted 5 new ones in recent monthsd -- what's going on?
I went to try the one by The King and Thai this evening -- it's on the same side of the street, just a bit west of The King, across the street from Pho Saigon.
Just to let you know my cred re: pho. Prior to this, I've mostly had Pho Boston which strikes me as decent and dependable, if not outstanding. My favorite has been the place on Main St. in Middletown. I've sampled a few other places in Philly and L.A., but I'm far from an expert.
My impressions: Decor -- uhm, there's tables. It's clean. Decor isn't the calling card. The pop-house music was a bit incongrous, but what the hey. I was there for the food.
I ordered the pho with all the goodies -- meatball, tendon, tripe, steak. The broth was light and delicate. Reasonably tasty on it's own, but not very strong. As soon as I added the hot sauce (and I went light, seeing as how the broth was subtle) I obliterated the broth. Oh well.
The portion was generous, as pho usually is. There was only one wedge of lime -- I'd've liked a few more. Service was attentive and friendly.
What was outstanding was the coffee. I usually think of Vietnamese coffee as being dominated by the condesned milk. Not this version! This stuff was thick, rich, down right chewy coffee, with just a hint of con densed milk-sweetness. Fantastic!
The bubble teas looked good to, but I didn't get to sample one. Lots of goobers hanging around in the bottom of vaguely artificailly colored purple and green drinks.
In sum -- great coffee, so-so pho.