It’s always refreshing to find an elegant restaurant in Boston that throws the rules out the door and embraces its individuality. This is the case at Pho Republique, on Washington Street in the South End, where wooden picnic tables and giant Buddhas replace the typical white linen tablecloths and waiters in penguin suits seen at other fine dining establishments. The decor is like something out of Legends of the Hidden Temple mixed with a Japanese Buddhist shrine, and just entering the building is an adventure. But the interesting decor isn’t what keeps the crowds coming back to this South End staple for quirky cocktails and absolutely delicious pan-Asian food.
We frequently state that we’d like our last meal on earth to be Pho’s crispy sashimi tuna rolls, ideal for true lovers of raw fish. Dipped in Pho’s tangy soy sauce it’s pure ecstasy. However if you’re not one for eating foods of the uncooked variety, we have to declare that Pho’s Pad Thai is one of the best in Boston. Whether it’s made with chicken or shrimp, Pho knows how to make those flavors more vibrant and delicious than anyone. Speaking of vibrant, Pho Republique features a pretty lively bar scene filled with everyone from young hipsters to businessmen. So if it’s interesting people and exquisite food you’re searching for, make sure Pho is a stop on your map.