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Where to Find Best Asian Soups?

thanksgang Apr 27, 2010 06:56 AM

Watching Man vs. Food the other night and saw a place serving huge bowls of Pho? or Ramen soup. They looked unbelieavable - loades with veggies, great noodles and thin meat slices. Where can I find this kind of soup in the Boston to Boston North area? Thanks!

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  1. l
    lexpatti Apr 27, 2010 07:44 AM

    Yo will find lots of great asian rest. in the Lowell area:
    Pho 88 is just off Rt. 3 in Drumhill (Lowell) for awesome pho
    Tepthida is closer to downtown and fantastic cambodian soups - best tom yum soup ever!

    South East Asia used to be one of my favs but I haven't been in a while:

    My all time addiction is in Billerica & Framingham - Sichuan Gourmet - they have a fantastic wonton soup with chili (as well as others);

    Lowell has quite a few places that do a wonderful job with that pho, we love pho 88.

    East Asia Restaurant
    868 Broadway, Somerville, MA 02144

    Sichuan Gourmet
    502 Boston Rd, Billerica, MA 01821

    Pho 88
    1270 Westford St, Lowell, MA 01851

    6 Replies
    1. re: lexpatti
      tatsu Apr 27, 2010 10:38 AM

      It's a little out of your way, and not a noodle soup, but one my favorites is the White Hot & Sour Seafood Soup for 2 at Sichuan's Garden, on Waverly Oaks Rd in Waltham.

      I've had White Hot and Sour at Taiwanese places before, (most recently a vegan one at Formosa Taipei) but this is special. It's loaded with crabmeat, white fish, shrimp and scallops. Almost a meal unto itself.

      The rest of the menu is unremarkable (and not very Sichuan), but I will go just for that. It's a big big space, larger than Changsho in Cambridge. Pretty popular around lunch I suspect. The buffet is also open at dinner, which is popular with the older Belmont/Waltham crowd.

      It's just one of those suburban Chinese places that you would drive by a million times and never think to go in. I just had a hunch it would be worth it. And it is, by a hair.

      But the soup is amazing.

      Sichuan's Garden
      411 Waverley Oaks Rd, Waltham, MA 02452

      1. re: tatsu
        Aromatherapy Apr 27, 2010 11:27 AM

        Good hounding. I always wondered (idly) about that place. Could one person put away an order, or is it vast?

        1. re: tatsu
          hargau Apr 27, 2010 05:08 PM

          Interesting. Ive been to that SIchuan garden in waltham and never had anything very remarkable. Tried menu, takeout, buffet over the past 10-15 years..

          1. re: hargau
            tatsu Apr 27, 2010 07:19 PM

            I completely agree about it being unremarkable, but the White Hot and Sour Seafood Soup just suckerpunched me. The last time that happened I was coming home from college and stopped on 80 in the middle of Pennsylvania. I ate fried chicken from a cumberland farms gas station I think. It was AMAZING, I'll never forget it. Turns out that they were these Amish chickens and the manager really really knew how to fry. (The same chickens I would eat more than a decade later at Tori Shin in NYC, the best yakitori place in the US, if not the world!)

            Just try the soup and tell me what you think.

            The soup is for two, so I guess it's about a quart, which makes sense, you get about 6-8 servings. It's pretty big! That and some rice for one, you could be all set. But it will take-home just fine I believe. It's served in a sort of hot pot with flanges and set in a ceramic bowl. I like to call it the "chinese canteen-tureen" ha ha.

            1. re: tatsu
              tatsu Apr 27, 2010 08:04 PM

              I should also add the last time I was there, I custom ordered vegetarian tofu black bean chow foon, which they did for me pretty well actually. I will often custom order dishes at chinese places that I suspect are holding back for the typical clientele.

              You should check out the website, it's hilarious:

              Make sure you got the volume up and click a few links. Ridic

              1. re: tatsu
                StriperGuy Apr 28, 2010 12:52 AM

                Most excellent craptacular web site. I particularly like vertigo inducing pictures that wiggle back and forth when you drag the mouse around.

      2. okra Apr 27, 2010 08:18 AM

        Puts in a vote for Ken's Ramen House..

        Ken's Noodle House
        1095 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

        1 Reply
        1. re: okra
          teezeetoo Apr 27, 2010 08:33 AM

          try dorchester for great vietnamese soup including pho and can chua - sunrise cafe on dorchester avenue is my favorite

        2. barleywino Apr 27, 2010 09:20 AM

          ask for the "birthday noodle soup" (not on the menu) at Jo Jo Taipei (assuming it hasn't changed since the chef left for Formosa Taipei)

          JoJo Tai Pei Restaurant
          103 Brighton Ave, Boston, MA 02134

          2 Replies
          1. re: barleywino
            StriperGuy Apr 27, 2010 11:32 AM

            Shangri-La, Belmont, has several excellent noodle soups and in fact most of the good Chinese places in town have one good noodle soup or another.

            149 Belmont St, Belmont, MA 02478

            1. re: StriperGuy
              thanksgang Apr 27, 2010 11:40 AM

              You guys are the best! I'll work my way through the list! Thank You

          2. b
            blink617 Apr 27, 2010 03:27 PM

            It's not pho or ramen, but I had some great soup at House of Tibet Kitchen in Somerville a few weeks ago with daikon, chicken, carrots and some homemade pasta that was kind of like mini-gnocchi. They usually have a few different kinds of soup on the menu.

            House of Tibet Kitchen
            235 Holland St, Somerville, MA 02144

            1 Reply
            1. re: blink617
              greenzebra Apr 27, 2010 05:24 PM

              I just had the thantuk (Tibetan soup with tofu, noodles, snow peas, scallion) from House of Tibet Kitchen for dinner tonight, and it was excellent.

              House of Tibet Kitchen
              235 Holland St, Somerville, MA 02144

            2. 9
              9lives Apr 27, 2010 04:08 PM

              Xinh Xinh, Vietnamese in Chinatown, makes a lot of good soups but 1 of my favorites is Bun Rieu..crab roe and tomatoes, veggies, noodles in a light broth. .worth a try

              Xinh Xinh
              7 Beach St, Boston, MA 02111

              1. s
                smtucker Apr 27, 2010 04:28 PM

                Over the past few months, I have eaten a lot of Asian soups. Favorites have been the Seaweed Soup and Duck Pho at Pho N' Rice [Somerville]. I have also really enjoyed the Pork Chop Noodles and Hot/Sour Soup at Qingdao Garden [Cambridge.]

                Now I need to try some of the recommendations from this thread.

                Qingdao Garden Restaurant
                2382 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA 02140

                1 Reply
                1. re: smtucker
                  EATTV Apr 27, 2010 04:41 PM

                  Pho Satay Dong Khanh Chinatown
                  Khao Soi @ Khao Sarn Brookline
                  Ramen @ Ken's Ramen Brighton
                  Tom Yum Goong @ S&I Thai Allston
                  Noodle Alcove hand pulled noodles RIP

                  Khao Sarn
                  250 Harvard St, Brookline, MA 02446

                  Dong Khanh
                  81 Harrison Ave, Boston, MA 02111

                  S&I To Go
                  168A Brighton Ave, Allston, MA 02134

                2. digga Apr 27, 2010 05:56 PM

                  Jangpong (spicy seafood soup with noodles) at Buk Kyung, Union Sq., Somerville gets my vote.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: digga
                    StriperGuy Apr 28, 2010 12:54 AM

                    One of the places on Harvard Street (Color or Hanmaru) supposedly has some excellent spicy Korean soups.

                    Also Toraya in Arlington had a killer beef soba.

                    And the soups at the Pho Viet in the (former) Super88 food court in Allston are pretty decent.

                    Toraya Restaurant
                    890 Massachusetts Ave, Arlington, MA 02476

                    Pho Viet
                    1095 Commonwealth Ave, Boston, MA 02215

                    Hanmaru Restaurant
                    168 Harvard Ave, Allston, MA 02134

                  2. BostonZest Apr 28, 2010 05:48 AM

                    Just had a great bowl of Pho Ga at Pho Basil on Mass Ave across from Berklee College of Music. Great service, wonderful menu. DC had the spicy eggplant with tofu and loved it. I was skeptical when I saw that they do both Vietnamese and Thai menus but they do a great Pho. This is in our neighborhood and I should have listened to the first hounds who tried it.


                    Pho Basil Restaurant
                    177A Massachusetts Ave, Boston, MA 02115

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: BostonZest
                      y2000k Apr 28, 2010 08:38 AM

                      Thanks for the review. Sounds like Pho Basil would be a better choice than Pho & I. I walk by Pho Basil all the time when heading to Symphony Hall, but never ventured in.

                      Pho & I Restaurant
                      267 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02115

                      Pho Basil Restaurant
                      177A Massachusetts Ave, Boston, MA 02115

                    2. n
                      nasilemak Apr 28, 2010 11:46 AM

                      Prawn Mee and Curry Mee Yong Tau Foo at Penang are very good.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: nasilemak
                        y2000k Apr 28, 2010 12:43 PM

                        Speaking of Penang, I love their Seafood Tom Yum Noodle soup. I *have* to order it every time (as a result, I never got to try anything else on their menu, except roti canai)!

                      2. c
                        cgandolfo Apr 30, 2010 06:30 AM

                        Pho #1 in Woburn on Main St (right across from the Lanna Thai Diner cart) was absolutely delicious and the prices can't be beaten.

                        I hear that Green Basil, also on Main St. in Woburn, is supposed to be good as well.

                        Pho is so delicious, yum!

                        1. s
                          SJason Nov 26, 2013 10:51 AM

                          I am resurrecting this thread because it is soup season and I recently had two soups that I absolutely loved. The first one was the JoJo Ma-la Vegetarian pot. Delightfully spicy and flavorful with lots of interesting things, not all of which I could identify. There were pieces of fried tofu, chunks of taro (I think) and "meatballs" that I think were made of vegetable protein. Also, bok choy, mushrooms, big slivers of ginger and two kinds of noodles - glass noodles and rice (?) noodles tied in bite size bundles. Those bundles are visually appealing AND practical as they solve the sliding off the spoon problem.

                          The second soup was the Kimchi Chigae at Buk Kyung in Allston. Spicy and flavorful. It hit the spot on a cold day.

                          1. e
                            Edokko Nov 26, 2013 04:54 PM

                            Since this thread is being refreshed, let me add Yume Wo Katare in Porter Square for Jiro-style ramen and Kaju Tofu House in Allston for sundubu chigae.

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