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Pho - Dish of the Month Minneapolis-St. Paul (Oct 2012)

Announcing the Dish of the Month for Minneapolis/St. Paul for October 2012: Pho

Link to Voting Thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/871238
Link to Nomination Thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/870914

The goal is to collectively try as many versions of pho as possible during the month of October! So let's start exploring and eating—report back with reviews and photos. Suggestions of places people ought to try are great, but the aim here is to be actively eating and reporting on current experiences.

Looking forward to seeing what people try! All types of pho are fair game!

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  1. Anyone try any pho yet? I'm looking forward to hearing reports!

    1. OK, I'll play. Pho seems to be surprisingly difficult to come by in downtown Mpls at lunch. I'd love to hear some good recommendations.

      I tried the pho at La Belle Crepe (on Nicollet Mall) last week. It was a to-go order. They prep the pho and give you a separate container of the cold garnishes as well as a tiny cup of hoisin mixed with sriracha (they also ask if you want hoisin and/or sriracha added before they close the container).

      I took the soup, walked a block to Angel Food Bakery to grab some bread to go with the soup (ended up with plain croissant), and headed another block up to my office. When I opened the soup, it was still almost too hot to eat.

      All in all, a good option especially considering the lack of numerous options downtown mentioned above. The broth wasn't spectacular, but it was fine. The beef was a paper-thin raw slice added just prior to closing the container and it surprisingly wasn't chewy from cooking in the broth for 10 minutes. Good, fresh shiitake mushrooms.

      In short, it isn't on the level of the oft-noted places around town, but if you're by Nicollet Mall and need a super-fast pho to go, this will satisfy your craving.

      1. I've been enjoying the pho at Pho 79 on Energy Park Drive in St. Paul. Very tasty!

        1. During the weekday lunchtime,I dine solo at Pho 79 energy park.They are the most generous of the garnish plate,and AZ's early career recommendation of a side order of their spicy chicken wings is true.If I go with family members,it's Quang all the way.True broth seasonings,and a fun lively atmosphere.Love their soup dumplings and the sea bass soup is worth a try too.I tried Ngon bistro's Pho this past summer and while it was great I'll take Quang over them anyday.You can also get down and dirty at Quangs slurping the broth/noodles,

          1. Well thanks to this thread, I tried my first ever Pho. Went with the ribeye version at Ngon and it was delicious. I had no idea what to do with the condiments, though, and would appreciate any instruction. And Ngon's side of the street is back open, for any of you who have been avoiding that part of town.

            I hope to stop by Pho 79 before the month is over, so I have some basis for comparison.

            1 Reply
            1. re: jaycooke

              Great to hear that you enjoyed your first-ever pho. I do pretty much the same as shikken with the condiments, but it's up to you. You can always get a small side-bowl, and experiment with the hoisin sauce, chili sauce, etc. with small amounts of broth before adding it to the whole thing.

              Looking forward to hearing what you think of Pho 79 (or other versions) that you try.