>> Just Pho | Eat the World NYC

01 October 2019

Just Pho

VIETNAM 🇻🇳

With only a small ripple, the city's newest entry into a lackluster pho (and Vietnamese) landscape recently opened in the shadow of Madison Square Garden. The promise of "just pho" is almost accurate, as the menu concentrates on four versions of the noodle soup, cooked in the Northern Vietnamese style which you might find in Hanoi.

While the fourth option is a shredded chicken pho gà xé, the first three focus on either cooked or raw beef and a combination of the two. This seems to be the focus of their energy and a natural first order. The bowl below is pho bò tái ($11 for small (shown) and $13 for large), their signature "raw" beef pho which probably translates better as rare despite what it says on the menu.


The thin strips of beef will cook themselves in the bowl, arriving slightly pink but quickly changing to brown. As you will find in Hanoi, the broth does not arrive super complex and full of different savory, sweet, and/or funky elements as a bowl in Saigon might. The soup base is simple and savory, with hints of anise and cinnamon and possibly cloves.

This might be initially off putting to fans of pho, but know that it is intentional, as is the lack of herbs served alongside a bowl. Instead, thinly sliced green onion and cilantro is added before serving. Take a few sips when it arrives piping hot, but then grab the condiments at the side to suit your needs. This is the real magic, as their house made vinegar-garlic-chili sauce (toi ngam giam) is just waiting to do tricks for you.

Flat and wide northern style noodles.

Once the pungency levels are to your tastes, add a squirt of sriracha for the necessary kick and pick up the wide noodles found in northern-style phos. With all of these little things done right, and the background of actual Vietnamese being spoken between the staff, it almost feels like you are not in New York for a moment.

They also do hot Vietnamese-style coffees and an iced green tea lemonade (trà chanh, $3) that is really outstanding. Just Pho is a great addition to the city!

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Just Pho Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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