Friday, 4 September 2020

Pho Real @ The Starling : Legit Vietnamese Food


Recently when I went up to the food court at The Starling, I noticed that Pho Real updated their menu. 

Image source : Pho Real FB
I must say that it is visually pleasing, so much nicer compared to the initial one.

Image source : Pho Real FB
Gone were the spring & summer rolls and steamed Hue-style rice cake. I noted three new additions to the menu - the Charbroiled Chicken & Beef and Grilled Prawns & Imperial Spring Roll (these are from the Dry Noodle Salad category) and Basil & Lime Chicken Salad.


I decided to try the two new items.


The Charbroiled Chicken & Beef was what I used to enjoy back when they operated Du Viet.


This one is a tad pale in comparison in terms of flavor (including the peanut dressing, please bring back the old recipe!) but you get ample  portions of protein to make up for it.


The caramel custard was complimentary and it made my day.


The Grilled Prawns & Imperial Spring Roll left me wanting due to the small portion of proteins. Besides it was served with just the peanut sauce which I felt needed some tweaking. I used to enjoy the peanut sauce during the Du Viet days.


From the Rice section, I am in favor of all three, my favorite being the Charbroiled Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken Chop (I have not tried the pork yet).


On this occasion, I added some vegetables as I felt I needed more greens hah..hah...


I love the chicken chop as the flavors really pop with the aromatic marinades.


My next favorite is the Beef Brisket Stew with White Radish.


The stew is hearty, with generous chunks of tender beef and yes, that's chili you see in the bowl. This stew is a little bit spicy hot, just slightly.


In spite of my misgivings about the set meals, I gave it another go when ordering the Braised Spicy Lemongrass Chicken. I drew the same conclusion about the extras although there was an improvement to the caramel custard.


This time I got the leg portion of chicken and though it was quite oily, the spicy lemongrass chicken was tasty due to the  aromatic and delicious spice paste. 

But let me tell you what are the BEST things here.


If you can only visit Pho Real just once, then you must order either the Hanoi Beef Pho or the Hue Spicy Beef Noodle. I have not tried the Dry-Style Beef Noodle but I trust that it is good too.

My top pick is the Hanoi Beef Pho


Go for the Special if you want the whole works - beef fillet, brisket, balls and tendon. 


It's a very generous bowl of pho and the broth has a robust beefy taste complemented by spices and herbs. I'll tell you that it is better than the one downstairs hah..hah...

My other favorite when I am in the mood for a spicy tangy soup is the Hue Spicy Beef Noodle (Special).


It was while waiting for my order last Saturday when I decided to check my phone only to be greeted by this shocking sad news.


WHAT??? NO!!!! NO!!!! Yeah, that's how I felt. Like a punch to my heart. I had watched Black Panther twice back in 2018. I felt like my heart just crashed heavily on the floor.

I actually lost my appetite there and then. That was how affected I was.


But life goes on. So I ate this amazing bowl of Hue Spicy Beef Noodle with a broken heart (drama betul Madam ni). 


The broth was tangy and spicy and savory and my appetite was revived somewhat. And yes, this one is also better than the one downstairs.

Then I went downstairs to Starbucks for a Mocha Frappuccino (with extra shot of espresso because they don't do whisky) when I saw this.


I'm sorry, but I think this is unbecoming behavior. The child should not be allowed to stand on the counter for hygiene reasons. The mum was simply oblivious to all this. Sorry again for being crabby.


By the way, Judy's Hakka Lei Cha & Cuisines has called it a day.

18 comments:

  1. They could have done a better job with that fried egg. For a while, I thought that you did it yourself. LOL!!! Pho looks good!

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    1. The pho is the best I have tasted so far.

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  2. sounds like pho real lives up to the promise of its name :D oh no, i never did try judy's hakka lei cha, and i love lei cha, it's certainly my favourite hakka dish, and not just because it's guilt-free!

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    1. It's a pity because Judy's lei cha was very good. I loved it and now I'll have to look for lei cha elsewhere.

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  3. Very hearty beef brisket. Wish for bigger prawns myself too. Hehe.

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    1. Three small prawns definitely not enough. Six would be better hee..hee..

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  4. I am drooling over the Hanoi Beef Pho. Wish I could taste it. Its dangerous for the child to be leaning on the glass show case. It could easily break under his weight.

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    1. I am glad I can get good beef pho near me.

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  5. Oh, really better than the one downstairs? Then I must make it a point to eat at the food court instead of the downstairs eatery. I agree with you that the grown-up who is with the child should be given a stern talking to. The staff should have reminded the grown up gently to ask the child not to do this. Yes, so sad about black panther star. he was only 43.

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    1. I believe the staff standing next to her wanted to tell her but did not find the courage. Besides she was constantly fiddling with her phone. That's what I observed lah. Yes, terribly sad. He was still young and had so much potential in his career.

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  6. It's such sad news...I just can't imagine anyone else portraying the role of Black Panther as he did it so well. :'( You have a right to be irritable...I am too when I witness such unbecoming behaviour (and I've seen quite a few cases myself). Sometimes I tak boleh tahan and feel like telling the mother/parents off but know I can't as that would be crossing the line. Of all the incidents I've seen, the one I disliked tbe most was when I witnessed once the children playing with the covers on the sushi conveyor belt by lifting the covers to look at the sushi and placing them back. I've even seen them putting the covers over their faces (those that they've taken and on their table). That really spoiled my meal. I hope the sushi covers get washed before they're used again! >_<

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    1. It's amazing how he kept his illness private that even the people in Hollywood were just as shocked. And to think how he endured filming Black Panther while ill (think all those fight scenes and stunts) and made another two movies after that.

      Oh yah, I have seen my fair share of bad parenting. It's astounding how the parents can just let their children misbehave. I can't imagine what sort of people they will become when they grow up.

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  7. Didn't know that vietnamese food could have so many varieties. Did you try the lime chicken salad, sounds refreshing and tasty to me. Is the water supply back already? I read about the news of KL water cut in facebook. Does this happen frequently? It must have beenso unconvenient for you guys.

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    1. I am sure there are many more varieties that we have not seen. I did not try the chicken salad because I feel it might not be filling enough for me. The water cuts in KL/PJ do happen frequently enough. I hope that after this incident the government will impose harsher penalties to punish people who contaminate our water sources. It was very inconvenient and frustrating.

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  8. The beef pho looks hearty...my kinda pho! The kid's guardian should be responsible in making sure the kid behave. I felt annoyed with such ignorance frm the kid's parent who are adults. So inconsiderate.

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    1. I see this kind of parents' tidak apa attitude quite frequently when I am out shopping. Haiz...

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  9. Wow! the Vietnamese food looks good. I personally will try the Bun cha as that is my fav meal in Hanoi :) Beef Pho would be next. The last time you mentioned the noodle dish at Champs i went an tried it and it was good. Sad that it has closed down...I will make a trip for the Bun Cha for sure soon. So far for me to drive to Starling just for a meal but will make an exception this time....I would've made it a point to tell the mother/guardian to tell her son to behave. No such nonsense for me :)

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