Sherman's Food Adventures: Pho Garden

Pho Garden

I gotta say, I really love Pho. The combination of slow-cooked beef broth, rice noodles and an abundance of meat really hits the spot, especially in colder weather. Honestly, I could probably eat more than one bowl at a time, including the soup! But I need to be careful what I wish for. Before my visit to San Francisco, I had heard about this place that had a really big bowl of Pho for $22.00. When I say big, it's a massive understatement. Imagine 2lbs of noodles, 2lbs of meat and soup, all in a really honking huge bowl which is specifically made for Pho Garden. The challenge is that if you could finish it within 1 hour, it's on the house. I'm not trying to play hero here, there is no bleeping way I could finish such a monstrosity. For me, it's more of the novelty than anything. It's a food adventure of epic proportions.

Of course, I had just finished up eating at Sol Food out in San Rafael; thus I wasn't really in the mood for more eats. In fact, I'd already been to Bakesale Betty and Cheeseboard Pizza! However, I'm dedicated to my craft and this was the only time I could squeeze in the massive bowl of Pho. Sal said she would only watch me eat the Pho. She was in no mood for more eating, especially since we had a reservation for Chapeau! in less than 3 hours. Before it even began, I told the server that I gave up because there is no way I'd be able to eat 4lbs+ of food, even on a good day. She seemed a bit taken aback and it didn't seem to register with her. Finally, I told Sal to grab a bowl so she could try some of the Pho. However, this is not really allowed because it's suppose to be for one person only, even if you do not intend to finish it. Think of it. A bowl of Pho that could feed a family of 4 or more, that costs only $22.00. It's actually a pretty good value. You can see why they don't really want you to share.

Even though I was not in the least hungry, the Chinese in me took over and I finished all the meat. I ate some of the noodles and drank some of the broth. Honestly, the Pho was not bad contrary to other reviews I've read. Of course I've had better; but it was more than acceptable. The meats were tender and the broth was not overly salty. The only complaint is that the noodles were a bit soft. In terms of the Pho of Fame, I'm not sure how someone could finish the whole bowl. They must've been real hungry!

The Good:
- It's clean
- The food ain't bad (contrary to other reviews)
- A $22.00 bowl of Pho!

The Bad:
- There is indeed better Pho elsewhere

Pho Garden on Urbanspoon


Anita said...

HAHAH..."The Chinese in me took over". I was ROFL when I read that! And it's so true that "it" kicks in when you can't finish something you ordered or for whatever damned reason. But holy cow, that bowl of pho is huge! :D

Sherman said...

LOL. Yup, I guess you get it Anita! That bowl of Pho was ridiculously large!

KimHo said...

I am with Anita on this one! Man, how many additional Kgs you gained after this trip??? I don't believe I would have been to eat so much... O_O

Sherman said...

No idea Kim, I ask myself the same question. I'm nuts. No other explanation.

Chris said...

You make me smile/laugh Sherman. As I started reading this post I kept thinking..I hope goes where I want it too. And you did, Epic!! Even if you didn't finish it.

Kevin said...

Dammmmm.....pho for days.

Sherman said...

Kev, Pho for a week!

david m said...

dude, it's very weird to write about ~decent pho in the richmond, anything at fisheman's wharf, popeye's, burger bar, mitchell's & buy rite. i'm surprised cioppino's didn't make it in there. next time, get to some good stuff, and don't let your friends take you around to all these tour guide places.

that said, good score on brenda's, though already annoyingly well known (esp to asian foodies), it's the sort of thing that you canucks can't find up there, thus, noteworthy.

ca'roline said...

ohh wow i'm sorry but i'm wondering if you have any idea where i can buy one of those hugeeeeeeeeeeeeee bowls? i've been looking all over for it. does pho garden sell them? :P