Restaurant Review: I Love Pho 264

Location: 264 Victoria St, Richmond
Phone: 03 9427 7749
Cuisine: Vietnamese
Overall Impression: 6/10

Boxing Day sales were upon us. It had been a tiring but productive day. J, with my help, (looking for sizes was a nightmare!) managed to get a sexy, well-fitting black suit for 40% off the RRP. We had also successfully “net-worked” randomly with another couple over pre-dinner drinks at a trendy bar in Southbank. This was particularly victorious on my part because I was born socially awkward. I’m not sure what happened but somewhere between finishing the first half of my glass of wine to heading off for dinner, we had exchanged business cards. It was reason to celebrate!
Not wanting to stuff our faces for the umpteenth time this week, we decided to have a light dinner to celebrate. Having heard of the aptly named “I Love Pho” (a sentiment I share) from food blogging circles, we decided to make our way there.
The place was buzzing with Pho-lovers.
Prawn and pork rice paper rolls
As customary in every Vietnamese restaurant that J and I have been to, we decided to start the meal with Pork and Prawn rice paper rolls. We were glad we did. These were the best that we have ever had. The beautifully thin and delicate rice paper encased fresh herbs and ingredients. The sauce was of particular note. It was incredibly scrumptious when eaten with the rice paper rolls. It had the perfect hint of spice from a chilli sauce that had been added right up the top. It was a great appetiser and a wonderful start to our meal.
Rice noodle soup: sliced beef and brisket
Rice noodle soup: shredded chicken
Both the Pho dishes were lovely. The broth was a lot more delicate and subtle in flavour in comparison to your run of the mill Vietnamese pho. The flavours appeared to be far less intense to our “local” Vietnamese eatery, Codo. That said, the broth tasted a lot more real (i.e. made of real chicken and beef stock as opposed to laden with MSG). It was certainly pleasant to eat.

Although slightly overrated, the appeal of I Love Pho is certainly easy to see. With a clear focus on rice noodle soups, it looks like a lot of heart and soul has gone into the food, making it a notch above the rest.
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