Thursday, December 15, 2011

Tropigirl is Out to Lunch (Lunch review #2)

I tell my husband I want to start having some lunch adventures and maybe go out to eat something we've never had before.

His immediate reaction is "Gross!"


"I never said it had to be anything weird or disgusting! Why would you even think that?"

To which he replies, "Well, it's going to be.  I've already tasted everything that's good, so, all that's left to try is the gross stuff!"

(Heavy sigh) Sometimes his man-logic leaves me speechless.

For our first adventure I choose Pho Hung.  This is a restaurant in my neighborhood that I've driven past every day on my way to and from work.  I've worked at the same place for 16 years.  I work 5 days a week.  Now, you can do the math if you want, but, the point is, that's a great many times to drive by a place and not ever stop to find out what it has to offer.

A bit of preliminary research teaches me two things:
First, I've been pronouncing pho wrong all these years.  It's not Foe, but, rather Fuh (as in Duh).
Second, pho is nothing to be afraid of.  It's just Vietnamese beef/noodle soup.  Ok, so many versions do contain tendon & tripe and that scares me a little, but, they do have a "Beginners Menu" that has a pho with only beef brisket.  I decide to play it safe and order that as well as the egg rolls.
Tim has no desire to try pho and goes with a lunch plate with teryaki chicken, rice, broccoli, egg roll and a bowl of seafood broth.

The pho is served piping hot.  It has rice noodles, lots of brisket, and the broth is full of green onion, cilantro, and lemongrass.  It also comes with a side dish of sprouts, basil, jalapeno, and lime that you can add to taste.  While I didn't care for the meat (it just tasted too gamey, like deer or elk) the broth and noodles were delicious.  It wasn't spicy at all, but, I can easily see why so many people wrote in their reviews that it was a great cure for their cold symptoms.  I ordered the large bowl, which was MASSIVE and was only able to eat about half.  The egg rolls were also piping hot (I loathe when restaurants serve me luke-warm food) nice and crispy with a great filling of chicken, shrimp, and veggies.

Tim said his meal was only average and not something he's likely to order again.  Looking around, (it's lunchtime and the place is packed) I don't see a single other person eating a plate lunch.  Just huge bowls of pho on every table.  I can only assume (with 18 or 19 varieties) that this must be their signature dish and Tim & I envision huge vats of the stuff back in the kitchen simmering away.

Even though Tim ate every bite of his lunch, I know he's still hungry, so I tell him we can stop anywhere he wants before we head home, and I'll gladly buy him anything.  I also thank him for being such a good sport and for going along with me on the lunch adventure.

So, we end up stopping at another little neighborhood eatery that Tim's more comfortable with.

Although I'm sure it will be as a solo diner, I can definitely see myself going back another time for more egg rolls and another bowl (small) of pho.

Maybe next time I'll feel like trying one of the tripe/tendon versions.   Maybe.

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From the time I was in grade school, I knew I wanted to travel to tropical destinations. I grew up loving blue oceans, palm trees, tropical flowers, and anything coconut scented. Finally, at age 34, I managed to take my first tropical trip. (Bahamas) I was hooked! Since then, every spare penny has been saved for the next vacation... every spare moment has been spent planning the next vacation... and the moments after that have been spent talking about and documenting that vacation. To date, I have been to Hawaii 8 times, the Bahamas 4 times, Las Vegas 6 times, New York (right after Sept 11th) Alaska and the Baja Penninsula. I decided to start this blog to document all my continuing adventures....let's hope there are many!