Pho Street is a quick service restaurant which first opened in December 2013 and serves authentic Vietnamese pho and street food. It is headed by Chef Hà Vị Cang Kenny, who is from Ho Chi Minh City and has more than a decade of experience in Vietnamese cuisine.
A brand-new revamped menu has recently been introduced from June 2015, with some interesting new offerings and also some tweaks to their existing dishes.
I was invited for a food tasting session (thanks to the Select Group for the invite!), so some of the food pictures in this post may be at reduced portions (at my request), as I did the tasting alone that day and I wanted to try a variety of dishes but didn’t want to waste food (in case I couldn’t finish).
Passionfruit & Basil Mojito – this was a bit sweet but still quite a nice drink (non-alcoholic) to cool you down on a hot and humid day.
Fresh Summer Rolls with Prawn, Pork Belly and Fresh Herbs (2 pcs) – In Vietnamese cuisine, typically I prefer the fried version of their spring rolls over this one as usually the rice paper wrapping is too thick and chewy! However, the version served here has a thinner rice paper skin, plus it was mainly full of greens, with prawns and a slice of pork belly which wasn’t fatty. Dip it into the chef’s special sauce and overall I thought it was quite a refreshing and healthy appetiser.
Vietnamese Snack Platter (Crispy Fried Pork Roll, Roasted Chicken Skewer, Vietnamese Crabcake) – I liked the presentation of this dish!! Note that the normal serving has 2 pieces of each food item but as mentioned earlier, I wanted to save room in my stomach to try other dishes, so the photo below is of a reduced portion.
The fried pork roll was indeed crispy and the somewhat translucent chilli dip is an accompaniment to this tasty spring roll. The opaque chiili sauce is to be used for both the crabcake and chicken skewer. I liked the crabcake and found it to be a flavourful mixture of pork and crab meat. As for the roasted chicken skewer, this was marinated with lemongrass and a chilli paste but it tasted rather “healthy” to me (i.e. I think I’m too used to satay and yakitori and prefer my skewered meats to be a little charred! LOL…). In addition, I felt that the pickles, which accompanied this dish, weren’t sour enough!
Crispy Chicken Mid-Wings served with Caramelised Sweet Dip (3 pcs) – This was still nice and crisp even after letting it sit there for a while. I could taste a salt and pepper seasoning in the batter but found the coating on the chicken to be a little too thick and a little salty, but I must say that the dip goes well with the wings. Families with young children will probably like this dish.
Sesame Rice Crackers with Fragrant Minced Meat and Spices Dip – It was my first time trying this dish and it was yummy! In my opinion, this would be a perfect side dish to go with beer!! ^_^
The sesame rice crackers were crispy and fragrant and the minced meat was flavoured with a lovely blend of spices and chilli. The dip on its own was very tasty and it would actually go very well with rice or noodles (thinking along the lines of bak chor mee) but too bad there is no such combination on the menu and this meat dip is only available with the crackers. It’s most definitely something that I would order again!
How do you eat it? Use the spoon to scoop the minced meat onto the rice cracker and pop it into your mouth! :p
Beef lovers should try the Pho Beef Combination which consists of beef slices, balls, shank, tendon and tripe. I was getting quite full from eating all the appetisers, so I asked for a smaller portion with lesser noodles (actual serving size will be much more than that shown in the picture below). The meat was tender and the soup broth was light and flavourful and you can taste the beef essence in it! Squeeze the lime into the soup to give a different dimension to the overall flavour. Don’t forget to dip the beef into their special chilli sauce if you want an extra “kick” to this soupy dish!
Dry Rice Vermicelli with Roasted Pork and Spring Roll – Again, I asked for lesser noodles but the pork chop is of the actual serving size and this dish also comes with one fried spring roll which is cut into two halves. The noodles are served with a crunchy mix of vegetables, pickled carrots and radish, a sweet sour sauce and topped with crushed peanuts. Do ensure that you mix the ingredients well, otherwise you may end up like me as I ate a slice of pork before mixing everything up and found the meat to be too salty. Once you have mixed all the ingredients well and eat the pork in the same mouthful as the noodles, then it won’t be that salty. I would have preferred the pork to be grilled but this had been roasted in a combi oven and thus lacked that smoky grilled flavour which I like. Overall, it was still quite a nice main course and the sweet sour sauce made it very appetising.
For those of you who like bread – the restaurant also serves Banh Mi, which is a toasted sandwich of crusty bread stuffed with meats, mayonnaise, pickled carrot & radish, cucumber, chilli and fresh cilantro. Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough room in my stomach, so I didn’t try it.
Cream of Mung Bean with Coconut Sauce & Crushed Peanuts – Wow…I’ve never had this dessert before and it was quite refreshing! The only dessert that I’m familiar with that uses mung beans is tau suan, so this was quite an interesting dessert to me! Note the cup shown is of a reduced portion size as I was already quite stuffed from the meal. The dessert was smooth, creamy, not too sweet and not too thick, so you can actually drink it with a straw. There was also shaved water chestnut bits and crushed peanuts in it and these gave an added texture and flavour to the dessert. Mmm…it was quite a nice ending to the meal! ^_^
Generally the food was quite nice and at affordable prices! However, I felt that some of their dishes, which have roasted meat in them, could taste even better if the meat was grilled instead of oven-roasted.
Pho Street @ Westgate
3 Gateway Drive, #B2-K6/K7
Nearest MRT: Jurong East
Pho Street @ Bedok Mall
311 New Upper Changi Road, #B1-40
Nearest MRT: Bedok
Opening Hours for both outlets: Daily: 11:00am – 10:00pm (Last order: 9:30pm)