restaurant: Pho79

I don’t know what it is about Pho (actually pronounced fuh), but I’ve been beyond obsessed. My post for Project Food Blog Challenge #2 was all about Pho, but it started long before that challenge.

My first experience was in Boston, where thankfully we had a pro guiding us along. And then a more recent amazing bowl at Pho Nam in Madison, WI. If you live in Wisconsin, visit this restaurant – it opened a few weeks ago, but the Pho was amazing!

So I’ve decided, that much like Lynn’s BVSLA quest, I’m on a quest for the best pho in Minneapolis. Or maybe the world, I’m not going to close any doors. Let’s begin with Pho79, shall we?

Pho79 is a restaurant that clearly focuses more on the food than the decor. I love a fancy restaurant with contemporary bathrooms as much as the next person, but there are instances when it’s just not necessary. Slurping pho is a perfect example. Located on the popular “Eat Street” neighborhood (free parking!) of Minneapolis, authentic and ethnic restaurants populate the streets.

It wasn’t very busy, on a cloudy Thursday evening, but it was early in the night. The fact that one of the other tables brought the staff cupcakes from a local bakery spoke more to what we were in store for than the fact that it was quite empty at 6:00pm. The service was quick and the prices worth smiling about – $8/meal. (I took half of my pho home too)

The menu is extensive, and could be a bit overwhelming, but when it comes to Pho, I need only one page and tend to narrow it down pretty quickly. Tripe and soft tendon? No thanks! The taster has been sticking with Bún Rice Vermicelli Salads, in particular, #38, which is topped with grilled, marinated pork and jumbo shrimp. The pork was delicious and the shrimp? Calling them jumbo is a bit of an exaggeration, but still delicious. I was more focused on the pho, sticking wtih pho tai, sach which comes with well done flank and skirt steak.

I always add all of the bean sprouts, jalapeños and lemongrass leaves, along with a heavy squirt of sriracha. It makes for a fiery, salty, steaming bowl of what can only be described as the most comforting, yet exciting bowl of soups I’ve ever found. How does the Pho at Pho79 rank? Considering I have no Twin Cities restaurants to compare it to yet, it’s #1 and would require an extra-delicious bowl of Pho to beat it.

Have any Pho recommendations for me?


  1. says

    I have been wanting to try pho 79 and now for sure have to.
    My favorite in town has been at Ngon Bistro on University. It’s delicious and as a added bonus, the decor and is nice too. :)

  2. says

    And now you totally have me obsessed. We’ve scoped out a couple Vietnamese places in our area, but haven’t been yet. Yours looks so good!

  3. says

    Pho Quan on Nicollet is, I hear, the best. They ONLY serve pho and spring rolls. Unfortunately, no vegetarian pho for me, but my boyfriend swears by it! I can eat huge piles of their spring rolls, though!

    P.S. Order the small — the small is too large for my 6’3″ boyfriend to finish in one sitting!

  4. Katie says

    Emily- Dan and I have been waiting to try Pho Nam (seeing that it is just 1 mile from our condo). Thanks for confirming it for us!

  5. says

    i think quang it is my fav mpls pho and siagon in midway has my fav st paul pho. we went to ngon last weekend which was pretty good too, but not outstanding. they use all locally soruced proteins and farmer’s market veggies. let me know what you find!

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