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Missing our daily noodle soup


Neil and I had been missing our daily bowl of noodle soup, our inevitable lunch whilst in Laos this summer so on the long weekend, we decided to try out a restaurant that we have been wanting to visit for a while now, Pho Phuong. It’s within walking distance of our house so after a hard day painting and bread baking the other weekend, we headed there, hopeful of recreating our Lao noodle experiences.

It’s advertised as being a “fine dining” experience and certainly the interior decoration lends an air of chichi-ness (that’s SO not a word but you get what I mean). Once inside, however, it’s a different story. Clientele ranged from families (grandma and grandpa included) out for an early Sunday dinner to young couples obviously trying this type of food for the first time, needing help with the menu which was enthusiastically provided by the staff.

We started out with a must:

Having only recently (as in, last week at our 24, 24, 24 dinner) discovered this beer, we were happy to see it on the menu – it’s one of those beers that pairs well with Asian food and sticky humid weather….

We ordered two different types of spring rolls, the cold ones filled with plump shrimp, fresh vegetables and vermicelli noodles:

These were a lovely mouthful to cleanse the palate at the beginning of the meal. Nothing special but wonderfully fresh.

and (mmmmmm!) deep-fried spring rolls with pork.

Oh. My. Goodness. These were amazing. Obviously just out of the deep fryer so very very fresh, they were crispy and light and I could have eaten a whole plateful of them. Fortunately we only ordered one each because shortly after they appeared on the table, these arrived:

Neil’s pho with beef and tripe (!)

and my vegetable chicken pho.

Served with mint and bean sprouts:

to make it all pretty:

These were both delicious bowls of fresh ingredients – I love that it’s food that makes you feel healthy as you eat it. Neil missed his chili paste but was offered three small chilis to spice it up a bit.

Clearly we enjoyed ourselves – as you can see our table before:

And after:

(no, I couldn’t make it through the bowl but made a valiant effort. Neil was fine with his!)

Verdict? I would absolutely be going back there soon if there weren’t another 10 or so pho places around town I would also like to try. I am glad I can finally recommend a great, reasonably priced ($38 all in) noodle place close to home though when people ask. This was a little piece of our Lao trip revisited deliciously. Had it been 38 degrees and 80% humidity, we could have closed our eyes and felt like we were back on vacation (sigh!).

Pho Phuong
1603 Dundas St West
Toronto, ON M6K 1A1
(416) 536-3030

Pho Phuong Fine Vietnamese Cuisine on Urbanspoon

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27 Responses to Missing our daily noodle soup

  1. Janis September 17, 2009 at 12:37 #

    Pho is my comfort food. Fortunately when we moved from San Francisco (where there were tons of Vietnamese places) to Massachusetts, we found a really good place about 20 minutes from us. It is my favorite food!

  2. Jessie September 17, 2009 at 13:11 #

    that soup looks really comforting and delicious

  3. MaryMoh September 17, 2009 at 14:05 #

    vietnamese food….oooohhh…its' delicious! I've just eaten some Vietnames food recently and fell in love with it. The pictures here make me want to go for it again.

  4. Spicie Foodie September 17, 2009 at 14:11 #

    I am 100% with you , love love pho! I've never had chicken only the beef minus the tripe & fresh spring rolls, yummy quite a feast you had:) You are lucky to live so close to such a great restaurant. Have you ever tried making either pho or spring rolls?

  5. Martha September 17, 2009 at 15:05 #

    You just made me decide on Asian takeout for Friday's dinner. That looks just delicious!

  6. eatlivetravelwrite September 17, 2009 at 15:06 #

    Janis – it's right up there with my favourites, for sure!

    Jessie – it was!

    Mary – I want to go back now too!

    Spicie – Pho is actually pretty simple to make. Spring rolls, have not attempted that but perhaps for our Lao-themed dinner party later this year…

    Martha – good choice!

  7. Heather September 17, 2009 at 19:18 #

    Hi Mardi! I love your pics. I love cold spring rolls! Will have to order some soon!

  8. eatlivetravelwrite September 17, 2009 at 22:35 #

    Heather – yay – you can comment again! Thanks and yes, do order them…. soooo good!

  9. Anncoo September 18, 2009 at 01:23 #

    Oh I love the beef noodle. Usually I will finish up everything including the soup!

  10. k a b l o o e y September 18, 2009 at 01:49 #

    Wow, that all looks so tasty. Great photos too. I want to make cold spring rolls and you just reminded me. I bought wrappers and shrimp, but then made an israeli couscous dish with saffron and shrimp, which was improvised, slammed together but very tasty. (you make me want to talk about food, Mardi.)

  11. eatlivetravelwrite September 18, 2009 at 01:58 #

    Kablooey – "slammed together" improvised couscous sounds great!

    Anncoo – It was a HUGE bowl!!!!

  12. Conor @ HoldtheBeef September 18, 2009 at 02:11 #

    Those spring rolls look great, I love the fresh ones on a warm day. Not so sure about the tripe though, sorry Neil. There are certain culinary lines I'm not willing to cross!

  13. eatlivetravelwrite September 18, 2009 at 10:00 #

    Conor – yes, Neil is a bit of a "fear factor" kind of guy!

  14. Lori Lynn September 18, 2009 at 15:17 #

    It is one of my favorites. Mouth-watering photos.
    LL

  15. eatlivetravelwrite September 18, 2009 at 17:32 #

    Lori – thanks!

  16. Andrea@WellnessNotes September 18, 2009 at 18:41 #

    Oh, I have been craving pho! I really need to get some soon. Beautiful pictures! :)

  17. penny aka jeroxie September 19, 2009 at 00:29 #

    Pho is everywhere! This place looks really great and I love the deep fried pork spring roll. It is the Lobak that I wrote about in my last post. Good luck with your PHO adventure! :)

  18. eatlivetravelwrite September 19, 2009 at 00:32 #

    Andrea – thanks!

    Penny – gotta love the Pho!!!

  19. Yvonne September 19, 2009 at 18:17 #

    I LOVE noodle soup – I LOVE Vietnamese…heck I just LOVE food. Count me in next time – we'll go to Chinatown for some Pho!!!

  20. eatlivetravelwrite September 19, 2009 at 18:21 #

    Hey Yvonne – welcome back! You are SO in for the next time – we have a list of places to try..

  21. Anonymous September 24, 2009 at 00:23 #

    try Pho Kim, it's tucked away behind Pho Hung off of spadina in chinatown.. in my opinion, this place tastes most like my mom's home-made pho.. the broth is a just a tiny bit sweeter than the usual.. so good!!

  22. eatlivetravelwrite September 24, 2009 at 01:17 #

    Anonymous – thanks – that is on our list!!!!

  23. Cocina Savant September 30, 2009 at 13:06 #

    This pho looks delicious. Despite the fact it is 9:00 in the morning I could really go for a bowl right now. What a perfect steaming hot meal to ward off the cold.

    Daniel

  24. eatlivetravelwrite September 30, 2009 at 15:42 #

    Cocina – I could eat pho pretty much at any time of the day!

  25. The Best Family October 13, 2009 at 03:54 #

    wow, that soup looks perfect for a cold winter evening here in michigan. have you tried making it at home? minus the tripe of course . . .

  26. sh April 12, 2010 at 16:20 #

    just a correction on the pho soup dish – this dish is served with bean sprouts and thai basil (or known as “Siam Queen Basil”, not mint.

    • Mardi@eatlivetravelwrite April 12, 2010 at 20:08 #

      Actually from what I recall, it tasted quite minty but yes, perhaps you are right? I have had pho served with mint on numerous occasions in Asia though…

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