Do Not Phở-sake Me, Oh My Darling
Brisket and rare beef phở at Simply Phở You
Last December, we listed some of the most fetching phở restaurant names around the country--Phở King, Phở Shizzle, and Beverly Hills' own 9021Phở among others. As we ate at Koreatown's Simply Phở You a week or so ago, we thought of a few more that, to our immediate knowledge, aren't actual restaurants yet--Phở Get About It, Phở-tography, Phở-ny Business, and Old Phở-ddy Duddy for starters. Some song-derived names popped up pretty easily too--If Not Phở You, Save The Last Dance Phở Me, and I Only Have Eyes Phở You.
There we were though, savoring a six-dollar bowl of rare beef and brisket phở. The broth had the sort of deep, warm huskiness we associate with long-simmered bones. The skin-thin sheets of brisket were perfectly chewy; the rare beef almost melted into the soup. We were surrounded by business lunchers. The suits were squirting Sriracha and hoisin all over their plates of sliced raw onion, swirling the ingredients together into an unholy-looking orange-violet mush, and picking away with chopsticks as they waited for their phở. Some ladies fresh from a shopping trip, their shoes ringed in a semi-circle of bags, were doing the same. Some variation on phở landed on every table, and even as we ate and enjoyed ours--slurping noodles, gnawing beef, sipping broth--we kept thinking about the restaurant's name--and rattling off handles for hypothetical phở joints.
While debates over the pronunciation of phở curiously rage on, those three letters tumble into a play on words as readily as a handful of sprouts and jalapeno coins falls into a steaming bowl of phở--as Simply Phở You and the names of many phở-centric restaurants prove. As if on cue, West Hollywood's UnPhởgettable opened two weeks ago.
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