Ha Noi Pho

Posted on 2011-03-23 22:16

4312 Innes Rd, Unit 1
Map (Not on Google Streetview yet)

This new restaurant is in the multi-unit strip mall on the south-west corner of Innes Road and Lanthier Drive, at the edge of the Loblaws parking lot. They are opened for lunch and dinner. There is also take-out, although their menu is online only. Their website has a few nice pictures, and there is an interesting link to a table of allergens in their various dishes. Allergens and Sensitivities (pdf)

Hours: Sunday to Thursday, 11 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday, 11 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.


revisiting after two years

Well, this place is still alive and kicking after two years since my last visit. This time, I ordered some take-out for me and my wife. She had the vermicelli, while I had the old standard rare beef. First, a couple deep fried spring rolls went down very nicely, even after the 15 minute ride home and 10 minutes getting in the door and unpackaging.

Maybe we were just very hungry, but she really enjoyed the vermicelli, and the broth was....actually excellent. The beef was rare, the broth was tasty, not quite enough basil, but all the other expected trimmings were present. Will definitely be back, and in less than two years this time.

Rating: 8.5 (mostly for awesome broth and rolls that were fresh)

Variety for Innes Road

Innes Road isn't much of a strip for variety in eating, at least along the section from Trim road stretching to Blackburn Hamlet. I can count on the fingers of one hand the restaurants that are not grill-style Kelsey's type places.

So I was happy to see this place open up. I met a friend there at around 6pm mid-week. I was expecting there to be a bored looking waiter leaning on the wall, but much to my surprise the place was bustling. There were only 3 two-person tables left. The decor was tasteful, modern with Asian influence. It is more a Vietnamese restaurant then a "pho" restaurant - there are no plastic chopstick holders on the tables, and you only get tea if you ask for it.

The menu is diverse enough, if not the pho section which had half a dozen types described in only broad terms (as to not scare people away perhaps). More on this later. They also had the rice and vermicelli dishes, appetizers, a few desserts and specialty drinks like the Vietnamese drip coffee. I had the pho served with vegetables and mushrooms (with beef broth). I must say the broth was pretty tasty, reasonably deep flavour. The vegetables were a bit of a let down though, mostly "western" stuff like broccoli, cauliflower, and regular button mushrooms. There was a few tiny bits of bok choy, although it really would have been better with more "chinese" vegetables. Not sure if this was the close proximity to Loblaws, or a dumbing down of the dish to the tastes of Orleans residents.

Anyway, the salad rolls were just OK - mostly noodles and not terribly delicate wraps although the shrimp in mine were good enough. The peanut sauce was also weak - too watered down. The hot sauce was also not very hot. I don't want to sound overly negative though - it was clean and nice, and I'm mostly about the broth which was good.

The service was cheerful and reasonably fast given how busy it was. Two sizes for the soup - small ($7.50) and regular ($8.50). They take credit cards as well as debit.

Rating: 7.5