For a basic fragrant broth on the Eastside, march to Pho Café, a soviet bloc boxy Vietnamese restaurant where a stark nameless exterior, known to passersby as the number of the unit in the lot, 2841, provokes Orwellian imagery, which is confirmed by the utilitarian white crockery set off by the even whiter interior.
It is this cloud I seem to find myself floating in often when seeking comfort away from a fussy world and fussy food. Usually alone with a book, I order the freshly prepared steak and tendon noodle broth for an iron hit, pairing it with a sugar beating from a battery charging glass bottled Coca-Cola. A splash of red from the label initiates rebellion, along with the red chairs and the chili sauce neatly positioned on a dragon patterned red plate, to break up the retina sweating neutrals swimming around me. The food is ordered and then delivered promptly and although always busy, there is never a long wait for a seat: a conveyor belted service with plenty of smiles, adding to the cool proletariat vibe circulating around the room.
‘No frills’ means cheaper prices and casual dining, where you can eat alone, spy, observe or slurp noodles with a lover for a late night Communist style tryst.
So, throw down your dollars (this is a cash only establishment) and toy with your agenda as to when you will next come back, because the food is, well, unpretentiously good.
Pho Cafe | Restaurants (Vietnamese) | Beef noodle soup US$ 7.50
2841 W Sunset Blvd | +12134130888
11:00 – 00:00 daily