Pho cryin' out loud.......
So here I was again, up around the Oceanside area. My first instinct was to drop by Guahan again. But since this was going to be before 11am, I had my sights on another place I'd been wanting to check out. Unfortunately, that place was packed.....at 1015 no less! So I had to settle for a plan B. Pho is always a viable back-up and there was a place fairly close by that I'd been told about but had never really been motivated to try. I think it was due to a mental block.......created by the name of the place.
Pho-real....it's called Pho-Ever and while it doesn't even come close with as does the "mother lode" with regards to names of pho shops, it was really hard for me to take this one seriously. I a serious two-fer', the restaurant next door is called "Thai One On"..... really. Just add in another restaurant name and you have a conversation "Pho-Ever"? "Yes! Pingo", now let's "___-____ Thai One On".
Still, here I was in Vista, it was a clear day, and like Barbera Streisand sang, "I could see Pho-Ever".
I walked into the place, which seemed like a nice neighborhood Pho shop, there was a family seated up front, and the flat screen was set to some children's show for the kids, a nice touch. The folks working here knew everyone who came in except myself, all regulars it seemed, though none were Asian, it was still a nice sign.
As for what to order? I just went with good 'ol #1, the Dac Biet, the house special....extra large bowl ($7.25).
The bowl arrived.....well not as hot as I'd preferred, but ok. The broth was cloudy, though it had fairly good hue. The flavor was very mild, mostly salty, very light on the beefiness, and was very "pho not to offend". Nothing really stood out, no onions, beef, nothing really.....
The herb....it should probably be singular and not plural, well, 'nuff said. The bean sprouts were very fresh. I really didn't need the lime because at least this wasn't an MSG bomb.
The noodles, and there was a good quantity of them was fine, perhaps a bit softer than I like, but still not bad.
As for the protein, well as you can see, it was pretty sparse. The place says it only uses "filet".....beef tenderloin, which is nice, but where's the supposed "rare steak" (Tai)? If you're serving "filet", I would like having it "rare" as stated. All the "well done" steak was fine. The flank was extra chewy, but that's nothing new, the lack of beef flavor in that cut and the brisket was. The tendon was fine, if a bit harder than I'd prefer. The tripe was nice, but also pretty sparse.
The folks here were nice and I enjoyed the neighborhood vibe. This seemed pretty much middle of the road, nothing wrong with that.
Pho what it's worth; I preferred the Pho I had at Pho Lena and Mr Pho. I know, I still haven't made it to Pho Lucky, Yummy Pho, or Pho San Marcos.....I haven't pho-gotten about it. Ok, that's it, no more pho-puns for a while.....
485 S Melrose Dr
Vista, CA 92081