We have soup cravings and head to one of our old favourites, Pho Bac Ha Duong Vietnamese Restaurant, Illawarra Road, Marrickville. This is our favourite place in Marrickville for Bun Thit Nuong but tonight is for soup.
Pho Bac Ha Duong has a tick in every box when it comes to a fine Vietnamese street food joint: condiment set on every table, tea without asking for it, and a beautifully dodgey interior, and exterior.
Miss Chicken picks the winner tonight, a fancy pants Bun Bo Hue, a spicy Hue style combination soup with thick vermicelli noodles. The broth was thin yet big on flavour with big beefy and fish sauce notes, love at first slurp. The noodles were like spaghetti, a nice change. Big meaty chunks of mystery. Fantastic. About $10.
One of our readers suggested we try Vietnamese sweet and sour soup, so we did, this one is the prawn version. I can't remember the exact name but I remember the taste: delicious. It is an excellent soup to share as there are no noodles and the flavour is quite strong and sweet, like a less-sour and less hot tom yum. The sweet and sour flavour is cut with some fresh herbs, okra and bean sprouts. Normally I'm not a bean sprout guy but in this soup they are magic.
The soup came with a good half dozen of so good-sized prawns, worth the extra couple of bucks at $16. A larger party sized version is available for $21.
Pho Bac Hia Duong as been a bit of a favourite of ours, but then again every Vietnamese restaurant in Marrickville is a favourite of ours. This place was three-quarters full on a cold Wednesday night.
Pho Bac Hai Duong is at 304 Illawarra Road, Marrickville.
BTW we saw a food court under construction on Marrickville Road, next to the Tavern, this could be good folks...