Vietnam was the last place I visited in Asia more than a year ago, and ever since, I am in a constant search for places that serve authentic food, and smell thoroughly of Vietnam. I found it.
I am extremely happy to introduce you to my new favorite place – Pho. It is an independent, family run restaurant with five conveniently located restaurants in London, and one in Brighton, so you don’t have excuses not to try it! It has been set up by husband and wife team Stephen and Juliette Wall, who were inspired by traveling throughout Vietnam and South East Asia in 2003. They both are still running the restaurant and plan on opening a few more in the near future. (details on the next one at the bottom).
Yesterday I went to the one in Soho and had the best experience ever. As you may already know, I like sharing the love and I will be sharing my Pho with you!
The restaurant was buzzing and we were told the wait would be around 30 minutes. Whilst we didn’t mind that at all, we got lucky and managed to get squeezed in much sooner. Kate Bush on the stereo, rose and beer ordered - for a second, I forgot it was Monday!
But the real fun was only about to begin. We ordered.
Thanks to a brilliant waiter, I discovered my next favorite dish, after Pho of course – traditional Vietnamese Crepe filled with prawns, chicken and beansprouts. Didn’t manage to eat this one gracefully at all.
Spicy green mango salad topped with pork, dried shrimp and peanuts… I mean, honestly, can you resist that?
Obviously, the all mighty Pho – did you know that Pho can kill a hangover or a cold in a second? Or that it is extremely low in calories? It is just so delicious that I forget how healthy it is.
Vietnamese curry is just a perfect mix between Malaysian and Thai. Like a light Katsu Curry. Yumminess.
Banana Fritters were deliciously gooey.
Pandan Pancake with roasted coconut and ginger ice cream.
As you may have rightly guessed, we ate until we groaned and then we ate some more. We washed it down with good Vietnamese beer (oh those memories of warm summer nights on the beach..) and something a little more unusual...Weasel Coffee. It is one of the rarest coffees in the world and exclusive to Pho in the UK. This coffee is eaten, digested and then passed by Vietnamese weasels - a process that dramatically alters the flavor of the deliciously tasty roasted beans! You must try it when you next go. The brave coffee pickers of Vietnam...
I am also very excited to tell you, that finally, Stephen and Jules managed to set for opening the seventh Pho restaurant in Spitalfields this summer (probably early July) – it will be at 48 Brushfield Street, E1 6AG. This is the site they originally wanted to secure for their first restaurant so they’re thrilled!
And most importantly, don’t forget to tell me how you liked it there, send me a picture of your favorite dish.