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Best pho on Larkin?

MJT Jun 26, 2006 09:28 PM

Going to Larkin tonight. Looking for good hard noodles, tasty broth and fresh meat. Clean bean sprouts and mint a plus.

  1. Candice Jun 27, 2006 03:02 AM

    I'm probably too late, but I really liked the pho at Pho Kien Giang at 1017 Larkin. The broth was well balanced without any msg sweetness and all the various cow parts were tasty. Sometimes the offal gets to me, but I enjoyed every bite of my soup here. I also really like PPQ at 19th and Irving if you get out that way. You can check out my pho list on yelp, http://www.yelp.com/list_details?user... .

    1. t
      TomG Jun 27, 2006 02:11 AM

      The OP asked:"Going to Larkin tonight. Looking for good hard noodles, tasty broth and fresh meat. Clean bean sprouts and mint a plus". The only thing TT has going for it is pho ga w/o bean sprouts or "mint". TT is probably not the appropriate recommendation.

      1 Reply
      1. re: TomG
        Melanie Wong Jun 27, 2006 02:27 AM

        Yes, and I think the Larkin location closes at 6:30 or 7pm.

      2. Atomica Jun 27, 2006 01:14 AM

        I was surprised at Turtle Tower's pho. I'm not a pho expert, but the pho I've had and liked has had a very complex, almost anise-y broth. Turtle Tower's broth was very, very light compared with what I'm used to. While I liked it, I prefer the dark, complex broth. Maybe I didn't order the correct thing?

        2 Replies
        1. re: Atomica
          Melanie Wong Jun 27, 2006 01:53 AM

          Some pho places make a darker beef broth that's more heavily seasoned with star anise, carmelized onions, etc. Turtle Tower's stock is not like that, it has the taste of bones and meat unmucked up by sugar or spices. I don't find it light, it's quite intensely meaty to me. Whether you like it or not is a matter of taste. I used to like the darker, spiced style, but have changed in recent years to the more direct flavors that Turtle Tower, Pho Ao Sen, and Pho Y serve and can't tolerate the other now.

          That said, I like the chicken version (pho ga) better at Turtle Tower than the beef (pho bo). Here's a link to my last post on it -


          1. re: Melanie Wong
            jograma Jun 27, 2006 02:49 AM

            Turtle Tower is a Hanoi-style restaurant, something we see far less of in this country than the Saigon style. In the South, in Saigon, they take their pho spicier and with mung beans, mint, etc. IN the north it comes unadorned and the purity and essence of the broth is the goal. Both the pho bo and the pho ga at Turtle Tower are very good, but it just happens to be not what many people expect, as Melanie pointed out.

        2. t
          TomG Jun 27, 2006 01:04 AM

          Bodega Bistro, same noodles and you get sprouts and basil.

          1. g
            goodfoot Jun 27, 2006 01:03 AM

            Our favorite pho is on 19th and Irving at PPQ. Fresh and delicious.

            1. s
              spork Jun 27, 2006 12:58 AM

              turtle tower. turtle tower. turtle tower.

              but you're not getting sprouts and basil. just lemon and jalapenos.

              1. rabaja Jun 26, 2006 11:32 PM

                Turtle Tower, hands down. No mint, though. And not sure what you mean by "hard" noodles...

                1 Reply
                1. re: rabaja
                  Melanie Wong Jun 26, 2006 11:38 PM

                  Turtle Tower uses fresh rice noodles that are chewy and delightfully slippery. They won't be hard and firm. It is my favorite pho ga in the City.

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