SF: Pot de Pho open - Anyone tried the organic free-range chicken, Kobe beef bone or vegan pho with house-made rice noodles?
They also have a few other Vietnamese dishes other than pho like ...
- CARI VIT $10
CURRIED DUCK & LEMON-GRASS MARINATED DUCK LEG, LONG BEANS, EGGPLANT
- THIT KHO TRUNG $11.50
BRAISED ORGANIC PORK, COCONUT JUICE, QUAIL EGG, PICKLED BEAN SPROUTS AND GREEN GARLIC CHIVE
- BANH KHOAI MIEN TRUNG $8
VIETNAMESE RICE FLOUR CREPE STUFFED WITH SHRIMP, BABY CALAMARI, BEAN SPROUTS, OUR SPECIAL ORGANIC SOY BEAN SAUCE
-CHE CHUOI CHIEN $6
FRIED BABY BANANA WRAPPED IN SINGAPORE PASTRY SHEET WITH TAPIOCA SAUCE
Menu is in link to website in the place record.
Pot de Pho
3300 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94118
Yes. I tried Pot de Pho on Tuesday, December 11 for lunch. My mom and I shared an appetizer made with grounded beef wrapped in leaf, beef pho, and caramelized fish in iron skillet. It was relatively empty with about four tables occupied.
Overall, I didn't think it was anything to write home about. My family is Chinese from Vietnam so I might be biased. It's one of those restaurants that is catered to the American palate.
The beef appetizer - It's like a meatball wrapped in a leaf marinated with spices. I might have tasted some toasted rice in it. I wouldn't order it again.
The pho - The noodles are a bit different from the standard pho restaurant. They're a little chewier and a little thicker. The broth was okay but I prefer a bowl of pho at Golden Flower any day. The plus side of this bowl is that there's no MSG and that it tries to use organic ingredients.
The caramelized fish - This dish came out in a little wok with basa fillets in sauce. This dish was slightly sweet,a little spicy, and ton of garlic. The sauce was great on rice.
The whole meal with tax was a little over $34.
I agree. I went last week and had a bowl of beef pho. It was okay. The beef was already in the broth and was far from rare, although it was flavorful. The surroundings are elegant and pleasant. And I think the dinner menu is the same prices as lunch.
My small bowl cost $8.75, so with a tip this was over $11 for an unexceptional lunch with no drinks or sides. Unless you're seeking some of their more unusual dishes, PPQ might be a better choice.
Another better choice might be Pho Tudo at 1000 Clement Street at 11th Avenue - a larger, satisfying portion for the same price, better broth...served hot. (bean sprouts and herbs, jalapeno slices on the side)
We had dinner at Pot de Pho on Monday evening; ordering the rare beef pho, the Thit Kho Trung with a side of rice, and tea. The noodles were silky and delicious, the beef was well-done but tender, and the broth was lukewarm. I think it sat on the side until the braised pork dish was ready to be served... portions are slight. The broth was flat and bland. The hot sauce is housemade instead of the usual bottled siracha and that adds interest.
While I didn't taste the braised pork dish, it looked interesting with the quail egg and the DH said it was tender like adobo (?) - that's an unqualified opinion.
I'm assuming this post was in response to what I posed...Golden Flower is my favorite place to go for only pho in San Francisco. I have other Vietnamese restaurants that I go to for different Vietnamese dishes.
As to the unborn chicken egg in chicken based pho, I "think" Turtle Tower on Geary Blvd. or in TL has this (it comes with the intestine combo and I think that they only give you one or two egg sadly). I've only had the chicken pho with intestines once because the intestines were pretty chewy like it was overcooked or something and kind of made me sick to my stomach.
We went last week and really liked it - but weren't blown away. The caramelized fish was our favorite - really nice sauce and presentation - we'd go back just for that. We also had the chicken pho (love that this is an option here) - it has a very nice flavor, homemade noodles and generally tasted a little better and fresher than I'd had before. It may be the best pho restaurant I've been to - but, I guess I walked out realizing that there isn't a huge difference between good pho (i.e. Zao) and great pho.
I had dinner there last Friday. I ordered the rare beef pho and imperial roll. The beef was tender and the fresh rice noodles were good. But I didn't care for the broth. I was expecting something better, more fragrant. The bean sprouts were in the broth already and we got a lemon instead of the usual lime. The imperial rolls were small and only four tiny pieces to an order.
I would go back to try the vegan pho.
I was also there last Friday and had the exact same impressions. The ingredients in the pho are good, but the broth was bland and disappointing. The chicken pho (pho ga) had better flavors than the regular pho. The spring rolls were fresh and good, but way too small. The papaya salad had decent flavors, but the papaya was too soggy and limp.
I also don't like the small servings of basil, hoisin sauce, sriracha and bean sprouts. I do want to give the place one more try and sample the rice plates.
Hi, just a quick note--we just ate here and everything was good/very good. BUT the portions were very chintzy--chicken in the pho was very skimpy, just a few bites, the rice crepe was less than half the average size, and the fresh vegetarian imperial rolls were two TINY rolls, like small egg rolls. I'm not used to this at pho places in the Richmond, usually it's the opposite. But we did find the food VERY tasty.
A friend and I had lunch at Pot de Pho today. I had the pho ga (chicken) and the papaya salad; my friend had beef pho with rare and well-done steak and the gan bo salad (thinly sliced beef tendon on a pile of organic sliced onions with spicy sauce). Both pho broths were intense, but without the overpowering anise flavor that some pho joints produce. The quality of the chicken meat in my pho was really nice, perfectly cooked and tender, and my friend said the beef in hers, although it was not rare, was tender and delicate. The onions were chopped more finely than usual and I think had been cooked a little before being added to the broth, making the flavor less biting. It seemed much less salty than most pho. The papaya salad was nice, crisp and not limp as an earlier poster reported, so they may be working the bugs out of the menu. The gan bo salad was not very successful -- raw onions, incredibly chewy tendon, and strong housemade sriracha sauce already put on in the kitchen, made a difficult combination to love. The menu recommends it with all of the pho -- I'm not sure why.
Service was excellent and friendly, and the room is lovely and light, contemporary Vietnamese with a few traditional touches such as the antique noodle cart in the corner. Pho comes to the table with bean sprouts already added and with a small plate of condiments; sauces in a tiny ceramic dish instead of the ubiquitous rooster squirt bottle; cloth napkins instead of a holder full of paper ones.
I finally got around to trying Pot de Pho last night. My boyfriend and I ordered the vegan pho (2 large bowls, $10/bowl). I make homemade (vegan) pho, and it takes about an hour or so. I've always enjoyed Golden Era's vegan pho, but Pot de Pho is closer to my house, so I was psyched to try it.
Our server brought us little dishes of (maybe?) house-made sauces. One tasted like siracha and the other other like a peanut/hoisin blend. She also brought us two small plates of pepper slices, onion, basil, and a lime wedge. About 10 min. later, our pho arrived.
The broth tasted mainly of veggie broth. It was clear and pretty flavorless, with no star anise or cinnamon or shallots or anything added. The noodles were very fresh, and the veggies (carrots, turnips, a few mushrooms, and bean sprouts) were well cooked. We found a few pieces of tofu, too.
Overall, I'd place this pho at the bottom of my list. It didn't excite my tastebuds, even after adding the complimentary side of sauces. In addition, we ordered the chocolate lavender custard, which had lots of vanilla seeds in it, but not much else.
The service was ok. The best part of the evening was the tables (great height for soup eating/drinking; not too short!) and chairs (soft and high backs).
Pot de Pho just reopened with an (according to our server, this was our first visit) revamped menu. I think this place is worth another try. On the evening we went, the broth for the pho ga was flavorful and rich, with lovely little (nontraditional) bits of finely slivered kefir lime leaves and plenty of chicken, along with their house-made noodles and condiments. I appreciated their rationale for adding the bean sprouts in advance (maintaining the temperature of the broth) as I'm not terribly fond of them when they're overly crunchy and cool down the broth.
We also tried a papaya salad, which wasn't my favorite version as it was a bit one-dimensional, and the fish in caramel sauce, which was not at all cloying and quite delicious.
Those who cannot get around a $5 bowl of pho will never like this place, but I am willing to give another try to a chef who takes pains to use organic veggies and free-range/sustainable proteins, who makes his own condiments, and who makes his customers so welcome. Plus the room is beautiful and offers a reasonable wine/beer list, which makes Pot de Pho a nice spot for a group dinner when you want a little ambience. They even feature a special Anderson Valley Brewing Co. beer styled after bia hoi that went very well with the food and would be worth seeking out if they ever decide on distributing it.
This didn't strike me as a Mijita-type, watered down place, more of a place where a passionate chef is trying to find a way to share his vision.