Judging Restaurants – Pho DC

Pho DC is located at 608 H St, NW. They opened up back in Dec. ’10. Their Web site says:

“PHO DC will serve the Vietnamese food which not only has Asian influence, but it also has influence from the French as well. The combination of both French and Asian makes for several amazing dishes. Pho DC emphasis will be on healthy Vietnamese authentic food. In addition to vegetables they are known to use several types of herbs and spices including lemon grass, lime, and kefir lime leaves. Pho DC is in need of a warm and friendly place with excellent food. The Restaurant will feature a cozy dining room and comfortable furnishings and decor with warm tones.”

Despite the unfortunate typo (“Pho DC is in need of a warm and friendly place with excellent food”) the menus sound pretty tempting. You can see their lunch menu here and their dinner menu here.

Any fans?

21 Comment

  • Always smells good when I walk by, but the last time I stopped in they still only do dine-in for lunch. They’d do a lot more business with the chinatown lunch crowd if they did carry-out!

  • Ate there once when it first opened and was pretty nonplussed. The food was all right, but the service was awful – goofy waitstaff that didn’t seem to know when to take an order, veeeeerrry slow food, etc.

    Still that was early on, I’m sure they’ve ironed out some of those kinks by now.

  • It was fine but Pho14 is much better. Nothing to write home about. I liked the decor though.

  • food is ok (nothing special), but prices are ridiculous for pho (I think it is $12.95 for a bowl?). They play pop radio too loud and don’t let you carry out. I suppose they can rely on tourists, but that’s not a winning formula to create a local following.

    • bfinpetworth

      I was once told by a Vietnamese person here in DC that pho should never be taken out – that Vietnamese people see that as improper. This place may just be enforcing that cultural norm.

      The truth is that it isn’t nearly as good when carried out. It loses something.

      • Emmaleigh504

        I don’t know if it’s improper or not to take pho out, but it defiantly doesn’t taste as good as take out unless you bring the meat home raw and have your Vietnamese relative cook/heat it up for you. It also helps that the Vietnamese relative used to own The Best Pho Shop Evah* before she retired.

        *Never actually ate at The Best Pho Shop Evah, but I’ve heard stories.

  • I’ve been there a few times, and I keep getting the pho. Not the best in town by a long shot, but conveniently located for my workplace. And friendly. I’ll keep going back.

  • No banh mi. Lame.

  • Last time I was there someone who works there told me that the reason the vegetarian pho is so delicious is the beef stock they use to make it. Just sayin’

  • Ugh. I was so hoping this was going to be good. I’m a huge fan of pho. Such a fan that I will even get mediocre pho to satisfy my craving. But this place was just not good. Can we find out if they use MSG? Because I left there feeling so lethargic and with a headache. Definitely not a normal post-pho feeling.

  • This place looks like crap from the outside but the interior decor is impressive. This establishment’s food is yummy. I enjoy the superior service. The broth used in the Pho is amazingly rich with flavor. I am surprised at the experiences of others. All of my experiences here have been delightful.

  • I go here more often than any of the other pho places, despite the price, simply due to its location just a 10 minute bus ride from my house. However! With H St about to have its own place, which will hopefully be good and more reasonably priced, I will have no reason to go to pho dc anymore unless I’m already in the area. I currently visit them about once a week.

  • I’ve been there twice and thought it was good, especially the curry puffs.

  • The food was good, but as others have said…waaay too pricey. It wasn’t more spectacular than most other Vietnamese places, just more expensive.

  • Too expensive for pho. Stick to the authentic places in Arlington for cheaper, better pho.

  • I’ve been there a few times, as it’s close to work and I’ve been pulling some late evenings. While the soup ingredients not as varied or as good as Pho 14, the broth is great and I’ve had no problems with service. Plus, unlike it’s competitors, it has a full bar. The music’s not bad when I’m in the mood for it.

    • OK, just went back there, and the service has gone downhill already. The food quality was still OK, but honestly, at a busy time of night, the place was more or less empty, too.

  • Two drinks, two happy hour apps, two bowls of pho. $56. Yikes.

  • Last month while meeting a friend for lunch, I was mildly scolded by the server/bartender for my preference of adding hoisin sauce and sriracha directly to my bowl. I hadn’t realized that dipping was the accepted method of condiment consumption. My bad. He was pretty cool about it, but he kept coming back around to tell me how the meat and broth there were superior to other Pho establishments and should be savored via the dipping method. His drive-by’s got a bit irritating after awhile, but he wasn’t being condescending or anything, so if I want to pile on the sauce in peace, I just head over to Pho 75.

    • Pho 75, where you will see plenty of Vietnamese people squirting the sriracha right into their bowl along with the Hoisin, and some dipping as well. This may be a regional thing.

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