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Thursday, 26 February 2009



hi kirk
pho hiep on telegraph is one of our faves and on our rotation. it's close by our place and we don't have to drive up to convoy or linda the owner is pretty nice too. nice to see you blog the south bay.


this would have been perfect this week, it has been rainy and very brrr cold.


Hi CC - I need to get out here more often.

Hi Kat - Is there good Pho in your neck of the woods? You've kinda got me wondering.....


Funny you mention "low oil". I just tried, on a whim, a food court pho shop in Sorrento Valley...I think it's called Pho Station. I knew better than to chance a food court version of Pho when the good stuff is to be had just up the street.

$6.85 for THE oiliest soup I've ever eaten. My goodness! Not sure there was any broth in there. Seriously, about 1 cm floating on top. Needless to say, I'll stick with Ca Dau...or even Luck if I'm lucky enough to have the extra time to make it further.

Anyway, with this head cold coming on, I think the familia will need to rectify this pho wrongdoing with bowls of the good stuff tomorrow.

Oh, did I mention that it came in a plastic bowl and plastic utensils (read, VERY small spoon). Zoiks! :)


Thanks for the review, Kirk. My friend who lives in Chula Vista has been looking for a good pho place near her home.

I tried that pho place in the foodcourt too and probably the exact bowl as janfrederick. Yick. It is really close to work so I give it a shot. But now I know.


Holy cow! What a great blog! I've come across it a couple of times before (re Mariscos German--still haven't been there, sorry to say--and who knows what before that), but I've been so busy reading every February post and comment that I can't recall how I got here today lol!

Anyway, thanks for the vicarious travel, the super pics, descriptions, and recipes, and all the tips! As I'm on a severely limited income, i.e., below poverty level with no bootstraps in sight, I really need the best bang for my meager discretionary bucks and you've given me some great ideas, like kimchee with peanut butter; I had it for breakfast in cabbage leaves. Yum! I think almond or cashew butter would also be good for a splurge. Here's one I can share about stuffed cabbage for vegetarians, vegans, or omnivores (I'm all three at times, love cabbage, and it's so healthy and affordable):

Stuff with cooked wild rice and barley, plus fresh mushrooms and scallions or chives; steam. Serve with a yogurt cheese sauce/spread--mixed with dill or mint, or parsley and garlic. Vegans: sub tofu or hummous for the yogurt. It's fabulous, albeit slightly but hardly recognizably repetitive, with a tangy coleslaw. Meat eaters: add pulled pork to the stuffing mix and serve with a vinegar dipping sauce and mustard assortment; add a side of carrot, raisin and walnut salad, or a cucumber daikon salad with ginger, or sauteed dark greens, or all three.

I'll be back, but next time with more date-appropriate comments I hope :) Sorry for the threadjack.

So, best pho in North Park-ish area is...?


My girlfriend and I tried to go to this place but we got up and left after waiting 15 minutes for someone to take our order. We haven't been back since.


Hi Jan - Lots of folks love a broth with good oil....thus the Nuoc Beo factor. It can add richness. My personal opinion is, if the broth is lousy no amount of rendered beef tallow is going to help it.

Hi Carol - Let me know what he/she thinks.

Hi Kath - Oh my goodness.....I'm glad you enjoy the blog! Pho Ca Dao & Pho Hoa on ECB is a good start for Pho. Kim Chan used to have the most reasonably priced Banh Mi. And Minh Ky and Tan Ky Mi Gia are also well priced.

Hi Steve - That sounds terrible.



Thanks for writing this place up!
It's pretty close for the wife and I, but looked too fancy inside to have a really good bowl of Pho.

And of course I was first introduced to Vietnamese food up at the Golden Deli in SGV...

We used to go to Pho Vien Dong up off Otay Lakes since it was convenient, but recently "discovered" Pho 888 down on Broadway by I.

It's been sold recently to a new family, and it's head and shoulders above Pho Vien Dong, for sure.

In fact, dare I say it, when you factor in the drive, their Phan Cha Gio awfully hard to beat.

Blasphemous? Only slightly. :)


Now that you've mentioned it, maybe we'll give it a try on one of these Saturdays. I totally forgot that it's just near by. Hopefully they have the sauce for "bun bo hue" like the one they have on Linda Vista.


Hi Joe - I've had another recommendation for Pho 888, so I hope to be able to check it out soon! THanks for the rec.

Hi YY - I dunno, I'm not a big fan of Pho Hoa Hiep's BBH, but maybe they'll make it better here.... I nearly forgot that they are in your neck of the woods!


Kirk --

Glad to see you got mentioned in the Reader, you are the king of SD food blogs!!!

I think you should add a ranked list, or maybe tiered list, of restaurants by specialty (Thai, Chinese, Sushi, etc.) of the San Diego spots you've visited. That way those like me who trust your impeccable judgment can pick places easier!!!

Thanks and keep up the great work.



Hi Pat - Thanks for the kind words.... Great suggestion, I have my "rotation page", but let me try to figure out how to do this....


I guess you are right. I probably wouldn't have complained if the broth tasted good.

Anyway, we did Ca Dau for lunch on Saturday and I got to introduce my 3-year-old to tripe and tendon. He LOVED it. Papa was proud! I wonder if he'll change his mind when he gets older.

I decided to go back to Viet Cali after a several weeks boycott caused by a couple of lousy bowls of Pho (I used to think such a thing was mythical - too many noodles in one case). But the soup was good today, so I'll probably return again.

Man, I HATE colds, but LOVE the excuse for a good bowl of soup (like I needed one to begin with).


Hi Jan - Wow, your son is waaaay ahead of the curve! Kudo's to you for providing a wide ranging array of food for him. Take it easy, lots of folks are a bit under the weather...the Missus included.


Sometime I go to Pho Hoa Hiep on Linda Vista because I know it's clean. I also like their sauce for Bun Bo Hue. I'm addicted to that little shrimp paste sauce that they have, though, their Bun Bo Hue is just average. I hope this new place have that same sauce. I can eat anything w/ mango, pineapple, green apple....yum


Hi YY - The Missus and I eat tha Pho Hoa Hiep quite often....when we don't want to drive to Mira Mesa or ECB. I gotta get you some spicy bagoong.....

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