It isn’t actually that hard to find Pho around Boston - especially not in Chinatown. But while Pho spots may abound, quality does not always follow. We’ve tested far too many DIY Vietnamese cafes to not know the good from the bad. We know what we want when it gets chilly in Beantown. So when we’re downtown, we know just where to head for hot soups with a flare.
Xinh Xinh is a local favorite, with some of the most authentic Vietnamese food in Chinatown. The portions are enormous, the white meat chicken is tasty and fresh, and the heaps of veggies can easily be shared by several. It’s a teeny bit pricier than other Pho restaurants, but we dig paying for quality and quantity. Their atmosphere is no frills, but you were there for the wall murals anyway.
Pho Hoa Restaurant, cousin to the Dorcester location of the same name and part of a nationwide franchise, might feel a bit like a chain (because well, it is). But don’t be fooled by their corporate facade. Their fruit shakes are yummy, their spring rolls are fresh, and their Pho selection has made its way across the US for a reason. The staff is unusually helpful and charming for Chinatown, so if Xinh Xinh is too crowded, try PH as a solid backup plan.
Dong Khanh is another sure bet if you’re in the area on a busy night. Not the best spot for vegetarians as their veggie broth is actually made with chicken, but meat eaters, dig in! Everyone can enjoy their noodles, however, and their bubble tea might be worth the trip alone. If you’ve never had fresh sugar cane juice, this is also the place to start.