Edible Sacramento - Summer 2007 - Errant Gourmet

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The new issue of Edible Sacramento will be coming out soon, so be sure to grab a Summer copy of it before it's gone! It's a great resource to learn the most about the Sacramento food scene in one magazine! Enjoy the sample article below.

I recently moved into a nice apartment off South Watt, which is a little bit scary to me when it comes to the restaurant scene. After nearly six years living in Davis, I had cushioned myself with the knowledge of where to grab a perfect cup of coffee or the best burger. Now I was in a place I had never dined, so like any errant gourmet, I rolled up my sleeves and went to explore my noshible options once again.

My first stop was Pho BAC Hoa Viet, a Vietnamese/Chinese restaurant off Bradshaw. As only Vietnamese customers seemed to dine at this little Denny’s-ish-looking eatery so close to the U.S. 50, I figured it was worth a shot.

The key to enjoying Hoa Viet is knowing what to order. Anything but drinks and pho (pronounced “fuh”) will not augur well for you. The chow mien was just bland with bits of unidentifiable veggies. The BBQ beef appetizer was decent, but nothing to write home about.

But the pho! All pho is made with rice noodles and served with sides of bean sprouts, basil, lemon, and jalapeƱos. Chili oil, barbecue sauce and other condiments are also at your disposal, so customization is a key aspect to your meal. I ordered pho with bits of rare steak, cooked flank, and tendons (you heard me). It was rich, meaty, warm, and huge. A large order can easily feed two people and the extra large could solve world hunger. I suggest you go for the small.

The avocado and coconut milkshake is heavenly. While it may sound a bit exotic and a bit strange, take a chance and try it. My praise may be effusive, but you’ll understand once you take a sip.

One thing you should note—the service here isn’t exactly great. Or good. Or friendly. The wait staff is here with very distinct purposes. To seat you, take your order, bring you your food, and process your check. No chit chat. No reciting of specials. It’s simply service. They’re busy too, so you may need to flag someone down to get attention.

Like any restaurant, it has its ups and downs, but in the end, you’re there for the food.

Pho BAC Hoa Viet
3110 Bradshaw Road, Sacramento, CA 95827


  1. I loveloveloveloveloveLOVE this place. They have 1 on Broadway and 1 on Madison at Auburn too.....
    I went to college in San jose, where there is Pho on every corner, and Pho hoa Viet rivals even "Pho Kot"<------say it fast, I dare ya!

    My husband, who "never prefers Asian food" (those are his words)requests Pho at least 1 time a month. Great for hangovers, sick days and days when you only have 4.95 to your name!

  2. That place is solid. The jackfruit, tri color and mango drinks are all good.

    I have have most of the differnt pho and they are all pretty good.

  3. Hay,

    I ain't no expert, but I think that service action is a standard. Do the waitstaff stand at attention near the register when not busy?


  4. I love pho! I agree that you pretty much have to hunt down wait staff in order to get a refill on your water, but it's so worth it. I usually get a big bowl of pho after a long day of snowboarding, heats me right up! There's a Pho place in West Seattle that serves cream puffs as a free appetizer. They do that to hook you on them, since they sell them for $1.50/3 puffs for dessert. Mmmm... now I want some!!

  5. I love their pho! It's an inexpensive comfort food. Their vermicelli noodles are tasty too. It's perfect in the summer when it's too warm for pho. The bowl comes with cool rice noodles and lettuce on the bottom, your choice of meat on top, and a tasty dressing on the side. The avocado-coconut shake sounds good. If you like durian, their durian shake is pretty good.

  6. I love that place too! I have had the meatball pho and the seafood pho. My server was very attentive..maybe I was there on a good day?


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