House of Pho

Restaurant Photo

Own this Restaurant?

Contact us about adding a photo gallery.
  • Not Rated Yet

Based on 0 Ratings

5700 100th St. S.W., Suite 510
(253) 983-0365

Take-out, Vegetarian-Friendly
Avg. Meal:

The Review

Reviewed by: Jake de Paul

Favorite This Like this Restaurant? You can Favorite it on your Profile.

For the urban adventurer, many strip malls in Lakewood are another potential exotic treasure trove, another opportunity to unearth a new international taste. You might stumble into an international buffet, for instance, with its giant soup bowls and endless array of Technicolor salads.

This week, though, I had a destination in mind, and Vietnamese comfort food was my Holy Grail.

The interior of House of Phó is a bit sparse and has the feeling of a restaurant that’s still settling into a space larger than it needs. Only a dozen fake flower arrangements dot pristine white walls. Inside the door, an aquarium cloaks the view to the Sea of Emerald — green tables, green chairs, green floors and a green neon strip of wood topping a vinyl wainscoting.

Unlike most Vietnamese menus with page after page of colorful dishes, the menu at House of Pho has just under 54 choices, more than half of them soup. To dedicate such space to a single dish demonstrates just how revered this comforting concoction is in its East Asian homeland.

Phó (more like “fun” without the “n”), the brothy mélange of rice noodles, meats and seasonings, has long been a staple of Vietnamese cuisine. Today, it rivals such Asian favorites as ramen, udon and soba as the most popular starchy import from the continent where Marco Polo allegedly discovered pasta.
A small bowl of phó is larger than any soup you’d get at other restaurants and runs just $6.59. More than 19 varieties combine rare or well-done ingredients that range from homey meatballs to more anatomical items such as tendon and tripe. Not wanting to miss out on anything, my party and I went for Pho Chin, Nam, Gau, Gan, Sach — a mouthful promising more than a mouthful of ingredients, like well-done beef brisket, flank, fatty flank, tendon and tripe.

By itself, the soup is comfortingly mild. Tripe is sliced into tender threads that melt into the broth, and fatty flank adds depth. A hint of allspice or cinnamon lingers, evidence of Vietnam’s prominence among spice exporters. A plate of garnishes makes the dish interactive — and ups the flavor ante considerably. Lime slices, Thai basil, sprouts and jalapeños give the soup a kick, and the brave can chance a few drops of hot sauce from tableside bottles.

Among non-soup items, about half are more familiar rice dishes and the other half vermicelli — a little like Chinese lo mein. Spring rolls ($3.79), one of only three appetizers offered, come in translucent rice paper with a filling of shrimp, pork and yet more noodles. The rice paper is slightly thicker and more gelatinous than at other local Vietnamese joints, making them a little chewy. But the plum sauce is thick with ground peanuts. More familiar fried egg rolls ($4.79) were a little greasy and heavy on the ground pork filling.

Tabletop racks offer both chopsticks and silverware, and hot sauces.

While the dishes aren’t as diverse as they are at similar eateries in town — we were dying for a few vegetables with our meal — this is a great place for phó novices to get an education or for longtime phó fans to try a multitude of variations on a favorite dish. If House of Phó doesn’t take you back to your mother’s chicken soup, at least it provides a welcoming oasis served in steaming bowls — a treasure to any hungry, searching soul.


User Reviews of House of Pho (0)

Weekly Volcano is not responsible for the content of these reviews. Weekly Volcano reserves the right to remove reviews at their discretion.

No comments have been posted. Be the first and add one below.

Leave A Review

(This will not be published)


Browse Restaurants

Restrict Browse To: