Vietnam Net goes phoking mad. There’s a round up of some of the ‘best’ pho shacks in Saigon and the streets you can find them in. Somewhat frustratingly, there’s a distinct lack of address numbers. There’s also some historical pondering on the humble beef noodle soup.
Lastly, there’s a wee look at the ongoing spread of the Pho 24 chain of soupshacks. When I first blogged about Pho 24 – a little over a year ago – there was one branch and I honestly didn’t expect to like it, but I did and I still do. In fact I still haven’t tasted better in Saigon. There are now over 20 franchise outlets the length of Vietnam and one in Indonesia. In the future Pho 24 "will serve customers 24/7". Does anyone know if that’s legal in Vietnam? Can you open 24/7 in Vietnam? Ly Quoc Trung, the beef and the brawn behind Pho 24, also wants "the model to develop worldwide".
Good luck to them. What they do, they do very well indeed. Pho does seem to have taken on some kinda mythic quality for Vietnam and Vietnamese people over the years. But would you rate it as the best dish in the gloriously vast Vietnamese culinary cannon? Good as it is, I wouldn’t.