I stopped by the newly opened Pho Viet tonight. With all the snow we've had, I had a jones for pho that I had to take care of. I love the newly remodeled interior. It has brick walls and is very clean and inviting. It's small enough to feel cosy, but there were several free tables when I was there (mid-afternoon on a "snow day"). The service was very friendly. I ordered vegetarian fresh spring rolls and pho tai. The rolls took longer than I expected to arrive, but when they did, I could see why. The rolls and sauce were beautifully arranged on the plate and when I bit into one, I sensed that they had been rolled to order. The bean sprouts, lime (only one miniscule piece - next time I'll request more) and basil accompanying the pho were gorgeously arranged into a bouquet. The pho was quite good. Not the best I've ever had in my life, but good - and I thought better than Pho 14, the neighborhood competition.
After my meal, the owner came over to ask me how my meal was and we proceeded to have a delightful conversation. He said that they are now open on Mondays. He has decided to close on Tuesdays instead. Tuesday after next will be their first Tuesday closed. He apologized for not being able to take a credit card (he says they will be able to in a couple of weeks - he's working on it). When I said I was worried I wouldn't have enough cash with me, he said, "No problem. If customers don't have enough, you can just come back and pay another day." My jaw dropped; I felt like I was in a small town in 1962. He asked me where I lived, which is a bit outside their delivery area. He said I could just call him and depending on how busy they were, as it's only he and his wife and another woman who may be their daughter(?) - he might be able to deliver anyway. He really seemed interested in getting to know his customers and building community in his neighborhood, in addition to putting good food on the table.
I'll be going back to try their bahn mi and their bun in addition to getting more pho. I loved this place!
3513 14th St. NW (just north of Tacqueria Distrito Federale)