Denver Food Culture Expands

Far.East.CenterSome of these are authentic Vietnamese restaurants who’s owners are a family. The restaurant is their livelihood and center of life. Its a passion for these people to share their culture and the food their family eats on a daily basis.  Now I am not saying they eat soup every day. The menu includes a selection of noodle bowls, rice bowls, plates and rolls; spring rolls goof, not a roll you get from Denny’s.  And what in the world are you doing eating at Denny’s, Applebee’s,  McDonald’s and the rest of those chain restaurants when we have such a growing diversification of food right here?

Denver is turning into a foodie city.  With the influx of people moving into Denver we have seen an explosion of culture and with culture comes food.  For those of us who moved to Denver some time ago, finding ethnic food was a drive through neighborhoods and lucking across an Indian establishment, Peruvian food, Ethiopian, or going to the Highlands for what was left of the Italian neighborhoods, or driving to South Federal Blvd where the Far East Center is located.  Other than those few areas we were starved for culture.  Well all of that has changed.

I know most of you are saying to yourself, “This guy hasn’t said Mexican food is cultural.” Ok people… really?  We are in the West and Mexican food is always readily available. There are food carts all over downtown Denver.  You can find food trucks all over the city.  The Highlands and Federal Blvd have always had the deepest concentration of Mexican cuisine.  From your “white people” Mexican, to your small family cantina’s where you get to eat what that family makes for itself every day.  That is the way it should always be.  If you don’t like that maybe you need to go to Hacienda Colorado.

Now onto Pho…

 

Pho Sure In Central Denver

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Pho 95 Noodle House, 1401 S. Federal Blvd, Denver, CO 80219

Now onto the point of this Vietnamese Pho article; what local media has stated; what locals have actually said; and what I experienced. But first let’s set the ground rules for this article and future Pho articles, because I am going to experience each and every Pho establishment on these top ten lists and provide you with honest opinions.  First let’s go through these top ten lists i will be using.

Westword, our local, part of the Voice Media Group conglomerate, who always has a top ten list for every thing and anything they feel is trendy and hip in every city they are located.  In this case its their Denver’s ten best spots for pho. Be aware that Westword is a “pay to play” business. So buyer beware if you want an excellent restaurant review than its time to pay up.  Your payment will solidify a positive to amazing review and even more to be placed in the front of the magazine and social media platforms.

Foursquare, who runs their own national media guide built from ” location intelligence to build meaningful consumer experiences and business solutions.”  Hey their words not mine.  The positive with Foursquare is that you get personal opinions. Here is Foursquare’s The 15 Best Places for Pho in Denver.  This is the list I will start with as it seems to be more trusted.

Pho 95 Noodle House was the on the top of the list with Foursquare so that is where myself and a buddie began. Below you can get a feel for what a large bowl looks like. And can you see from by buddies eyes he is pretty excited.

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My buddy is pretty crazy on Pho and a super critic so when the waiter dropped off his heaping bowl of broth, rice noodles, and meats (triple for him) he bent over the bowl, closed his eyes, and inhaled.  From there all I saw was this goofy ass smile on his face… He had found heaven.

As my buddy added three types of protein to his Pho I added two with veggies.  I’m not a sniffer like he is so i used my spoon, dunked it in the broth, and guided that package to my mouth.  The result… Hmmmmmm baby.  It was light, full of flavors, and ready for some bamboo shoot.   I’m a Sriracha guy, so no matter what, when that orange filled bottle is in front of me I always add it to my food. So that sauce addition just peaked the broth for me.

With some time for us to take a few bites our waiter and one of the owners came over to say hello and see if we were enjoying ourselves.  Wow were they friendly and most of all funny.  We asked about the Pho King Challenge and the whole conversation turned into endless laughs.  Now if you want to do this challenge you will have to go to the 2 day notification by calling 303-797-9535 and make sure you go to the Centennial Streets at Southglenn location. This challenge does not happen on the Federal Blvd location.

The addition of my meats (beef and chicken) with the veggies was more than filling.  If you decided for the trifecta I think you would be equally as happy. Lets just say any way you choose to go with your Pho 95 will be excellent. Just make sure you bring some good friends with you and plan on a couple of hours to have some beers, order the spring rolls and spare ribs; they are to die for.

So get the Pho out of here and go get some!