What a way to spend a Monday evening!
After a whole day of house cleaning and re-organising my wardrobe, changing over the Winter clothes for the Spring, I was tired but pleased that I had used my day off very productively and managed to burn off some calories from working the vacuum – that I was ready for our ‘Food Safari’ adventures with Hubby in the evening with our fellow Food Safari hunters/organisers – Lambo and Maz.
Tonight was ‘Pho Night’ and Miss Maz, whose is from a Vietnamese background, has been telling me forever about this ‘best Pho place!’ and that I just had to go try it out. (A rave review from a Vietnamese native who has sampled Pho in Vietnam and also makes it So having our Monday evening set aside, Hubby and I was looking forward to this place where it was so highly spoken about ….especially from someone who knows and loves her Pho!
After several ‘adventurous’ incidents on route to Bankstown – we thank God that we made it there in one piece, as we were craving for a large hot bowl of Pho!
Parking was very handy as there was a large parking lot next door to ‘An Pho’ and later discover that whilst we did drive quite a long way to get there, to actually consume a bowl of Pho was probably the same amount of time to walk to and from the car park… VERY FAST! ( So just a hint readers: This place is not for you to dwell and hang around if you know what I mean – especially during the ‘peak’ lunch times! )
We had so much anticipation on eating here – as Lambo and Maz kept raving on how good it was and that this drive out on a Monday night was well worth every litre of petrol! ( Which I might add made Lambo do all sorts of crazy driving getting us there, such as making a right turn but ignoring the speeding on coming traffic – argh!)
As we turned onto the street where the restaurant was, I noticed a large building with a brightly lit restaurant which had a sign outside reading ‘ Pho An ~ So Far So Good’ I thought to myself ‘ How cheesy is that!’ to my amusement, that Maz exclaimed ‘ Oh thats where we are eating!’ ”Oh ~ ” I thought…. and giggled inside.
Upon entering, I noticed that there was two doors – ‘Entry’ on the left and ‘Exit’ on the right. ‘Wow ~ how organised’ I thought.
Next thing we knew, we were escorted to our table and had the waiter shadow behind us and from the corner of my eye, I saw that his PDA was ready and finger in hand – poised. He was ready.
Having already discussed in the car on our way over, we were organised and decided what we had wanted to eat. Maz said that they are fast and serving nothing much other than Pho ( pronounced ‘ Fur ‘ ) in it’s specialty and acclaimed ‘secret’ soup, ‘Traditional Northern Style Vietnamese special rice noodle soup’ we just had to decide whether I wanted the ‘small ‘ or ‘large’ size and which part of the ‘beef’ I had wanted in it…
I went for the ‘original’ which was just the rare beef which I liked to cook in the hot broth to keep the flavours and tenderness of the meat. My Hubby went for the ‘duc bit’ which contained ‘no duck’ but just the ‘special’ beef bits – such as: brisket, beef roll, flank and tripe. Very special indeed. He also of course added in his favourite Vietnamese cold drink/dessert : Three Colour Bean Sweet in a Parfait Glass with shaved ice. I personally love this drink too – always reminds me of happy childhood days, especially with the tri-coloured syrup over the ‘igloo-sque’ ice crush with the squiggly green chendol and red jelly swimming in the coconut milk. Happy times!
What was also renowned here at ‘An’ apart from their delcious and simply addictive soup (urban myths saids their secret ingredient is of a ‘herb’ of an addictive kind which Amesterdam would have approved….) but what I was also amused upon my visit was the efficiency of this place. Food and service is made at LIGHTNING speed – worthy of a good ‘F1′ pit stop for all you F1 fans out there..
After ordering and seeing our speedy waiter tap it all in his PDA, my Hubby turns to get the camera out of his bag and after only fiddling the aperture and settings, he turns back to find that his large bowl of ‘Duc Bit’ or known as ‘ Beef Combination’ noodles and all our orders has arrived steaming hot to the table! Amazing! This is why they are also called ‘ McPho !’
Snapping our food quickly before our soup goes cold ( My pet hates: Luke warm coffee and luke warm soups – hence I wanted to dig in as soon as I can and dunk my rare beef straight below the steaming hot broth.)
Our slurping and silence was the indication how good the noodles were and the soup was – as advised I first taste the soup without adding the addition sauces to sample it as a ‘pho purist’. It was very flavoursome and hits the comfort spot square bang in the middle! *Sigh* Nothing like a bowl of Pho on a Monday night with friends…. and adding more of the hoisin and chilli sauce to adjust the taste of my soup with a squeeze of lime, I was in a ‘happy place’ ( Wondered if the ‘special happy herb’ had anything to do with this natural high….)
Thanks also to Lamb, who suggested that I MUST try dipping the beef with the self made Sate sauce. It was just so sublime – the rich tang of the chilli with the mellowing chilli oil was just a perfect condiment with the slices of ‘just cooked’ beef. I was in love!
Best still – this stuff was on sale for about $3.00 a jar at the counter!
Overall, the Pho An experience which I could say was enjoyed with a smile and a tummy full of noodles. It was indeed well worth the drive and God forbid an addiction to An’s … for it is a LONG drive from the North to here!
Sharing is not allowed at this joint – ( no pun intended) but as we discussed it would be possible to share a large bowl of Pho between friends, you will find that this will cost you an extra $3.00 for a bowl. Unless of course you are super close with your friends and family and do it cheap communal style… or just avoid being cheap and get your own bowl!
Free parking lot next door – plenty during the time when we were there on a Monday night. Not too sure if it is during the day!
Pho An Restaurant
27 Greenfield Parade