Just a stone’s throw away from the hotel we were staying at in Ho Chi Minh City, sits cosy little pho joint, Mama Pho Restaurant. The seemingly cafe-style establishment serves up pho as well as other local delights but how it differs from those you get from the streets is a massive variety of pho types, as well as sides.
Mama Pho has a stellar pho-centric menu, featuring not only different flavours of the classic soup-based pho. Here is where you’ll find unique pho-based creations such as their Crispy Pan-Fried Pho, Rolled Pho and even Wok-Fried Pho.
You won’t find many locals dining here given its higher price point, but here’s why we think that Mama Pho is worth a visit regardless.
In a bustling city like Ho Chi Minh City that bustles even more at night, places to find food in the wee hours of the morning is never a difficult feat. And Pho Ha, a cosy little pho-focused eatery in District 1 just a short walk from where we stayed, proved to be a solid go-to to satiate our pho cravings from as late (or early) as 1am.
This late-night spot is a bit of an institution in Saigon. Before the arrival of Bitexco tower across the road, the street that Pho Ha sits on used to be packed with late night pho outlets serving Saigon’s later night revellers.
Having been around for the past 20 years, these folks know how to serve up a proper bowl of pho, so skip your McDonald’s and head over to Pho Ha for a delicious late-night bite instead.
A popular pit stop among the Vietnamese locals, Nhu Lan Bakery houses several food stalls in one. The establishment functions as a banh mi kiosk, a proper sit-down Vietnamese eatery as well as a delicatessen and meat grocer.
Every morning from as early as 5am, throngs of locals park their scooters right outside the eatery, grabbing themselves a quick bite before going about their day. Curious, and pining for a taste of what locals deem delicious, we decided to pay the humble eatery a visit.
They serve everything under the sun, from tasty, proper bowls of pho bo, to a massive selection of banh mi toppings and even some other local delicacies not commonly found elsewhere.
To only have a single bowl of pho during a vacation to Vietnam is a downright atrocity. The popular street food is the core staple of Vietnamese cuisine and is literally what going to Vietnam’s all about—for us anyway.
Stumbling upon a rather unassuming eatery by the street going by the name Pho Hai Trieu, we were lured in by the bold aromas of simmering meat broth and freshly stir-fried delights, as well as a team of friendly wait staff who were eager to sit us down.
Specialising in an assortment of chicken dishes, pho and hearty soups, this humble eatery may not seem like much at first, but it really does impress with its wide array of menu offerings—especially their chicken dishes.
Walking down the streets of Ho Chi Minh City, one might find it a challenge to identify exactly which pho stall is truly the best especially with the sheer amount of street-side stalls, food stands and restaurants selling it.
But perhaps one of the best and most highly recommended pho places in Ho Chi Minh City to visit is Pho Phuong 25 in District 1. Having heard so much praise being sung by both locals and tourists, we did not hesitate to pay this humble corner stall a visit—we were far from disappointed.
For a truly authentic and out-of-this-world beef pho experience when in Ho Chi Minh City, you really have to drop by Pho Phuong 25.