Review: Pho & Bun Vietnamese restaurant

With so many eateries to choose from in Chinatown, it’s hard to know which ones to go to. On the outside many of them look the same, but as Katherine Brook discovered during her dinner at Pho & Bun, it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Read on to find out what she thought.

Situated on Shaftesbury Avenue on the edge of Chinatown, Pho & Bun is a Vietnamese restaurant that serves traditional dishes like pho noodle soups (from £8.95), as well as more creative options such as their signature steamed bao burgers (£8.50). 

Having not eaten much Vietnamese food before, we began by seeking the help of the waiters, who were more than happy to take us through the different dishes, recommending their favourites as they went.

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To start, our fresh summer rolls with tiger prawns (£5.50) were served with a thick, sweet and homemade peanut sauce. We also ordered the chargrilled pork lollipops with shitake mushrooms (£6.50), while our plum-glazed BBQ spare ribs (£7.95) were so tender that the meat fell off the bone.

Eager to taste a variety of Vietnamese specialities, we chose three dishes to share for our main course: the traditional pho noodle soup (£10.95) had a deeply meaty and fragrant broth (the result of 24 hours of simmering) served with rare sliced beef short rib; the vermicelli rice noodle bowl (£10.95) was served with stir-fried lemongrass, beansprouts and beef rump steak; finally, we had to try one of the steamed bao burgers (pictured below), so we chose the crispy lemongrass chicken option with plum ginger sauce and chilli mayonnaise (£8.95). The steamed bun was soft and light, offering a delicious contrast in texture to the crispy and succulent chicken – we could have eaten lots more of these.

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Though we didn’t have room for dessert, the flan caramel (£3), which is served in a pool of Vietnamese-style iced coffee, was recommended to us. Or, there’s grilled banana with coconut banana ice cream (£3.50) and even a fried bao bun, filled with salted duck egg custard (£3.50).

Whether you’re popping in for lunch or dinner, Pho & Bun is perfect for a bite to eat, with food served fast and fresh. There’s also a great-value set menu available at lunch time, offering two courses for £9.95, while in the evening, guests can dine from a four-course set menu at £23.95, which also includes a drink. 

vieteat.co.uk/pho-bun   

76 Shaftesbury Ave, W1D 6ND
020-7287 3528 | [email protected]
Mon-Thur noon-11pm; Fri-Sat noon-11.30pm; Sun noon-10pm
Prices and times correct at time of publishing

 

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