An authentic taste of vietnamese cuisine

An authentic taste of vietnamese cuisine

When I walked into Pho Lotus, I wasn’t expecting to be overwhelmed, but I ended up tasting authentic Vietnamese cuisine at a reasonable price, accompanied by wonderful service and hospitality.

I found the ambiance of the restaurant to be very pleasant; the walls are covered with beautiful murals of lakes and there are potted plants all around the restaurant. The establishment, located at the Chino Promenade, follows COVID-19 precautions to a T by requiring their staff to wear masks and sanitizing their menus and equipment. There had been an option for outdoor dining, but we took our food to-go.

As an appetizer, I ordered two shrimp spring rolls for $3.25. The spring rolls were crisp and well made, unlike other spring rolls I’ve had which were soggy or had filling spilling out of the wrapper. The shrimp was tender, well seasoned, and sliced thin, making the spring roll easier to eat. The savory and nutty peanut dipping sauce was not overpowering and complimented the spring rolls well.

I also ordered the fillet mignon pho ($14.40). The noodles were al dente and the broth was rich and flavorful. There was also an assortment of priced add-ons you could get, including but not limited to extra fillet mignon (+$7.50), shrimp (+$7.50), and beef balls (+$6.30). I did not get any add-ons, but they would be a good option if a party of four or five came to eat. The dish was not incredibly expensive, and I even had enough to share the pho with my family since the portions are more suitable for large parties of up to four people. 

The second dish I ordered was the rice noodles in beef broth ($9.60). The broth was saltier than the fillet mignon pho which made the soup more flavorful and had a meaty, umami flavor. The rice noodles were delicious and did not have a flour-like aftertaste that can happen when noodles are undercooked. The assortment of vegetables in the dish provided a good break from the rich meat and the starch of the rice noodles. Overall, this dish was very flavorful and suitable for the cold weather.

Lastly, I had a brown sugar grass jelly drink ($7.20). There were add-ons such as boba ($0.60) and extra grass jelly ($0.60) neither of which I tried in the drink. The drink was not overly sweet, and the grass jelly was fragrant and not medicinal like other grass jellies I’ve tasted in the past. The brown sugar syrup was sweet without being overpowering, which made it a great drink to accompany the savory meal.

Pho Lotus is the perfect restaurant for quick takeout or a satisfying lunch. The prices and portions are well balanced, and there is something for everyone.  Due to the comfortable and inviting atmosphere of Pho Lotus, coupled with the flavorful food, this restaurant definitely warrants a return.