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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Houston
Food
Feel
Price
9.0
7.0
$10
Vietnamese
Casual restaurant

Hours
Daily 8:00am–8:00pm

Bar None
Credit cards Visa, MC
Reservations Not accepted

Bellaire Chinatown
11209 Bellaire Blvd.
Houston, TX
(281) 879-9940
Pho Danh II
Great pho and bun bo Hue from the cleanest corner of Hong Kong Mall 4

Pho Danh II is buried in the side of Hong Kong Mall 4, which houses several of the city’s most underwhelming pho houses. But this restaurant stands out so much from the rest of the mall, it’s shocking. And not just because of the pho—if it weren’t mostly liquid, you could probably eat it off the floor it’s so clean in here. Even the kitchen looks like it’s swept and buffed hourly.

Whereas most pho places have rice plates, spring rolls, and egg rolls, the Danh doesn’t deviate much from its eponymous achievement. You can actually distinguish each flavor in this broth. It has a strong beefiness, with a base built on onions, yet a licoricey, bright anise shows up, too. We admit we find Pho Binh’s just a bit more sublime, but Danh has got its meat beat. These ones come freshly sliced, and only slightly cooked before broth immersion. The accoutrements are vastly improved, as well, each leaf looking hand-picked, the basil a vivid green.

Pho Danh II also does a wonderful bun bo Hue, flavored with lemongrass and shrimp paste, so that the broth transports you from the garden to the sea and back again. It’s teeming with flavor-importing pigs’ feet and cooked blood, congealed into tofu-textured, mildly ferrous cubes to comfort and energize, in the good old-fashioned Hue.

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