I’ve been a regular at the flagship Clerkenwell branch of (popular) Vietnamese street-food restaurant chain, Pho for quite some time. Opened in 2005, Pho was established to specialise in the Vietnamese national dish of the same name. Now with 5 restaurants (Clerkenwell, Oxford Circus, Shepherds Bush, Brighton and Soho) they look set to spread their success on a wider scale.
Hands up, I’ve not traveled to Vietnam (yet) so I can’t vouch for the authenticity of the dish, but really that is no consequence to me anyway as I simply love the food Pho is serving up.
I have been for both lunch and supper on many occasions, and one thing I can tell you is that it is extremely popular at all times of the day. You’ll undoubtedly have to wait for a table, but the staff are turbo-charged and turn the tables around in no time so you rarely have to wait too long. You’ll be given a copy of the menu whilst you wait so you have time to consider your options.
The beauty about the food at Pho is that despite being delicious and filling, there is a distinct lack of (my often favoured) ‘stodge’ element. All the dishes are made with the freshest, lightest ingredients leaving you feeling nourished as opposed to bloated. I’m a massive fan of the Bun Chay – a bowl of vermicelli rice noodles served at room temperature, topped with fresh herbs, crunchy carrot, crisp lettuce, mooli pickle, spring roll, tofu, fried shallots and peanuts. Accompanied by a small bowl of nuoc cham sauce.
Pho’s loyalty card scheme means that you’re on to make some savings as well if you’re a regular also.
Finally, a massive plus for a place such as this, they do takeaway! What more could you ask for?….Oh, maybe one of their jasmine flower teas….or one of their fruit juice blends…..or….or….oh, just go and try everything.