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Love For Pho

I was just coming out of a bout of food poisoning and was looking for some flavourful, regular food again. Although at the same time didn’t want to rock the boat with something complicated for my empty stomach that has only been eating soda crackers and raw fruit.

So we thought something warming like soup would be a good idea. We decided to make it Vietnamese, visiting one of my partner’s go to spots on Kingsway, in East Vancouver.

I remember he called it by a different name, but today the sign above the door read “Love for pho”. This was Vietnamese noodle soup made Chinese style.

The restaurant even looked like a Chinese one with red lanterns and Chinese New Year decorations still up.

The menu is a double sided laminated sheet, covering plenty of options and their variations. My partner got his usual Bún Bo Hué, spicy beef noodle soup with vermicelli, instead of the typical thick noodles (the way he prefers it). Beef Brisket, Ham, Pork Hock, and Pork Blood in a Hot and Sour Soup.

This was definitely one of the most flavourful versions I have ever had. Full bodied with a tangy spice, given more textural interest with the chewy skin of the pork hoc, and more depth of flavour from the pork blood cubes.

I was torn between what I should get for my healing body versus what I wanted to try. The safe choice would have been the house beef noodle soup with a clear broth.

But my drive to try something different and my current fixation of crab soup steered me towards their Bún Riêu. Crab Paste, Shrimp Paste, Ground Pork, Egg, Tomatoes, Pork Hock, and Pork Blood with Thin Vermicelli in Soup. You could taste the butteriness of the crab in the broth. Similarly the pork hoc here added a gelatinous texture I enjoyed gnawing off of the bones, and the blood gave things a umami rich twist. I also like to load up on the side of beansprouts for a fresh crisp, alongside the thin shreds of raw slaw sprinkled over top. The first few sips and bites were the best. But the one toned taste did wear on and the broth got thinner as it did.

Luckily there was a caddy of sauces at each table to fully utilize. Not just the usual Vietnamese brown sauce or squeezable chilli one, but chilli oil and Chinese style Chili crunch. This was a wonderful flavouring agent for the pork blood.

We also tried their Cold Cut Banh Mi, after I learned that it does include pate. Although I should have asked for a double, as I barely got in any of the rich and gamey flavour that I love. It would have also helped to add some moisture to the dry notes from the crusty bread. Or some tangy mayo to help brighten up the pork slices would have helped as well. Similarly there weren’t enough vegetables to balance out the meat. And I don’t believe they were pickled so there was no acidity to round out the sandwich.

In conclusion, a delicious meal from a step above your everyday corner Vietnamese restaurant. I can and would recommend them.

Love For Pho
3524 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC V5R 5X4
(604) 568-8884

1 thought on “Love For Pho”

  1. “Love For Pho” offers a unique fusion of Vietnamese and Chinese flavors in East Vancouver. Their Bún Bo Hué and Bún Riêu noodle soups are rich and flavorful, with the addition of pork hock and pork blood adding depth. While their Cold Cut Banh Mi could use more pate and vegetables, the overall dining experience is satisfying and recommended for those seeking comforting and delicious Vietnamese cuisine.

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