We were recently invited to dine at Twenty Pho Seven located on Russell St in the CBD. Yes you read right! It’s a play on words for a twenty four seven pho place! For those of you who may not know what pho is, it is a Vietnamese bowl of soup noodles. Being Vietnamese myself, I have had many bowls of pho in my lifetime, through my family cooking it up at home, at authentic local Vietnamese restaurants, and even in Vietnam when I went on a family trip many years ago. So it’s safe to say that I had high expectations on the pho at this place!
Our first observation when we arrived outside was that it was a perfect location for a 24 hour restaurant. It was in the heart of it all and I could really see people showing up in the wee early hours of the morning after a night out partying in the city for a hearty bowl of pho for the soul. It provides a great alternative to greasy fast food. Why wouldn’t anyone want some soup noodles to cure a hangover? We also loved that on the feature wall, there was Bruce Lee holding a bowl of pho.
We were warmly greeted by Taeeun who provided us with some menus and talked us through the options. We started off with a couple of cocktail bubble cups. I ordered the Whisky Business and Davin ordered the Good Morning Vietnam. I’ve always loved whisky sours but this one was probably more on the very sour side. The Good Morning Vietnam cocktail however was really good! It was a unique take on the traditional Vietnamese coffee and we loved it.
For entrees we ordered the Bo la lot Beef Skewers which is beef in betel leaf skewers served with nuts and nuoc mam sauce. This was super tasty! The beef was flavoured really well. We also got the Nem Nuong rice paper rolls. The rice paper rolls were huge and the ingredients were really fresh. The Nem Nuong was not salty at all which can often be the case.
Our highlight entree dish however was the Hanoi honey glazed fried chicken. Oh. My. Gosh. It was SO good! They came out piping hot, the skin was super crispy and yet the chicken was so moist inside. In fact when I took a bite, I think some of the moisture from the chicken dribbled out onto the table. Oops. The flavours were also spot on, it was sweet, tangy and really appetising.
For mains I of course had to order my usual pho of choice which was also their best seller, pho with sliced beef. Given I had already ordered pho, Davin decided to opt for the Bun Bo Hue which is a spicy noodle soup. The bun bo hue was probably not as flavoured as the soup base tasted a bit watered down. However the pho was really good. The soup base of the pho was flavoured really well and I loved that they provided extra pickled onions on the table. My only comment was that the sliced beef was more on the tough side, ordinarily we love our beef on the rarer side. However other than that it was a pretty decent bowl of pho!
Overall it was a great experience and a place we would definitely come back again when we’re in the CBD and craving those deliciously fried chicken wings and a hearty bowl of pho!
Twenty Pho Seven
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 138 Russell St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: +61 3 9654 2024