Friday, June 26, 2015
Banh Mi Goodness found at Pho Van Fresh
Having fun lunch plans today with Sonya, we met Downtown at Pho Van Fresh, a casual Vietnamese eatery specializing in, you guessed it, Vietnamese street food such as pho, bowls and banh mis. It was great to see the space was large enough to accommodate a hefty lunch crowd, so in we went to enjoy a leisurely meal during prime-time lunch hour.
Located in the heart of the Pearl District in Downtown Portland, Pho Van Fresh is conveniently located on the corner of NW Glisan and 10th Avenue. As already mentioned, their dining space is quite extensive, and I've heard from other locals that this restaurant used to be occupied by another place called Silk, which was quite popular. Rumored to have the same owners but now a different name and ambiance, I think the current set-up works really well.
The dining style here is very casual, as I like it, in which you order up front and then your food is brought to your table. Sonya and I sat outside in the shade where we continued to enjoy great service and the benefits of dining al fresco.
As soon as I noticed the banh mis on the menu, I was totally sold and had to go with my top choice - the pork. Sonya ordered a rice bowl, which was generous in size and boasted overall nice flavor both in the protein and the starch.
Pork 3-ways Banh Mi - Boasting three different types of preparations of pork including pork belly, hand pulled pork and a homemade mortadella pork, this sandwich was all sorts of yummy. Despite sounding very meaty, in actuality it was pretty light--topped with lots of fresh vegetables such as a traditional carrot, cilantro and onion medley. The bread itself deserves an individual nod, as it was perfectly toasted, airy and held up well to all the above-mentioned ingredients.
Service and Cost:
Although we came in during prime time lunch hour, all orders seemed to be expedited very quickly and we received our food in 10 short minutes. After that, I'm happy to say that someone came by to check on us and we always felt well taken care of - including when it came to busing our plates.
Costs are inexpensive and offer a great run for your money at just $6.95 for a large banh mi and $8.75 for Sonya's rice bowl. We'll definitely be back for more!
Pho Van Fresh - 1012 NW Glisan Street, Portland OR 97209