Last time I visited Pho Tam out in Whalley, I noticed that there was another Pho restaurant a couple of stores down. I found it a bit strange since Pho Tam is probably one of the most solid Pho restaurants I've been to. Wouldn't it be hard to compete? It's like trying to open up a clothing store right next to Walmart. How can you compete with bigger, cheaper and better (well, that might be contentious; but you get the point)? For me, I just had to try it out. This time around, I just made sure I didn't circle too many times around the block. Apparently, the cops mistaken me for something else since I drive a black SUV.
Joining me for lunch today is Sexi Mexi. Yes, she is Mexican and she loves Pho! I wonder what would happen if we combined the 2 cuisines? How about refried bean pho??? Uh, maybe not. Well, I did order the Shrimp Salad Roll and it does resemble a burrito. Alright, I'm grasping at straws here. Although it was fresh and crisp, the salad roll would have benefited from more shrimp as you could see in the picture. As per usual, I got the Pho Tai, Nam, Gan, Sach, which is essentially the everything but the kitchen sink pho. Topped by a reasonable amount of tripe, flank, tendon and rare steak, the noodles were still a bit chewy (which is a good thing). However, I thought the broth was a tad on the weaker side. I did detect beef flavour with some spice; yet overall, it did not stand out. It wasn't bad; but Pho Tam is better.
One of the rare times, I got to see someone eating Chicken Pho. Sexi Mexi went for the chicken meatball pho and it did seem quite a bit lighter than my meat ladened bowl. I don't know about you; but I associate Pho with beef and this chicken thing seems a bit wrong to me. Noodles looked good though. And this brings up a good point. Everything was decent, if not pretty good. Yet, is that good enough when 2 stores down is Pho Tam, where you can get bigger and better value. Well, they both co-exist in the same strip mall, so I guess it's all good.
- Inexpensive (like most Pho places)
- Decent bowl of pho
- Soup was a bit weak
- Lemon wedge instead of lime (I know, I'm being picky)