By Daniel Paris

Many feel hesitant to patronize a restaurant simply because they don’t know how to pronounce the ethnic names of the menu items, even if the translation is next to the choice. Think of a Vietnamese restaurant as a comfort food diner where the food is full of flavor with the added benefit of fresh, healthy ingredients infused with light sauces instead of sitting in one-note gravies.

When I feel a sore throat coming on, my first impulse is to head to Pho Vu for a steaming bowl of Pho (pronounce Fa) with its deep-flavored broth including a choice of thinly-sliced steak, chicken, dense pork meatballs, seafood or tofu. All are accompanied by sprigs of fresh Thai basil, thinly-sliced jalapeno and fresh bean sprouts. You mix these into the broth according to your desired level of heat. Finish off with a squirt or two of Sriracha and hoisin sauce.

During the endless desert summer, I often order fresh spring rolls. A filling of cold vermicelli noodles, shrimp, pork, thinly-sliced carrots, cucumber, and mint wrapped in a see-through thin rice paper wrapper. An order of two makes for a satisfying light lunch or dinner.


The next time you need a fix of wings, I suggest you try the Vietnamese crispy chicken version with spicy salt, onion, and garlic and a spicy lime and vinegar dipping sauce. You will be hooked.

Other highlights include the Bún dishes which are your choice of grilled and chilled lightly-sauced beef, chicken, pork or tofu with shredded carrots, onions, cilantro, sliced cucumber, and greens served on a bed of vermicelli noodles all dressed in the classic light, sweet and sour sauce. It makes for a great summer salad.

When you are in a hurry, call ahead for a classic meal-in-a-bun Bahn Mi sandwich. With pickled red onion, carrots, mint, cilantro and your choice of pork, beef, or chicken all served in a soft Vietnamese bread roll.

All these foods hold up well for take-out orders which is what Pho Vu is doing at this time. Prices are very reasonable and the food is high quality. Give it a try and mix up your take-out routine.

Pho Vu
34260 Monterey Avenue
Palm Desert, CA 92211
Monday – Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Pho Vu
79630 Hwy. 111
La Quinta, CA 92253
Monday – Sunday 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.