Monday, October 7, 2013

Pho Ann, Cabramatta

If there's one thing I know about Cabramatta (in relation to food of course!), it's that they do have their fair share of best kept secrets. Pho Ann is one of those places. While there are barely any coverage about this pho joint on Urbanspoon and even Google, it still gets incredibly busy during the weekend peak lunchtimes. Although the address said that it's on John Street, it's actually located on the further end of the Belvedere Arcade alleyway across from Cafe Nho. Pho Ann is a relatively newer establishment having only been around for about 5 years or less (I remember seeing the opening deals during my uni years) compared to the long standing Vietnamese eateries like Pho Tau Bay, Pho 54, Pho Viet, Pho Minh, Tan Viet and Bau Truong which have all been around for decades. 

It's easy to confuse yourself between this establishment and the much more famous An Restaurant in Bankstown from the similar names to the way the pho is made. The main difference is the price. While Bankstown's An Restaurant serves up a small bowl of Pho Tai for $13.00 and a large bowl for $14.00, Pho Ann does the same but for $8.50 - small and $11.00 - large. If you want a bowl of Pho Dac Biet (Combination Noodle Soup), you can get a small bowl for $9.50 and a large bowl for $12.00. That is the most expensive item on this menu.
While most Vietnamese restaurants serve a variety of different food from fresh spring rolls to bun bo hue and egg noodle dishes; Pho Ann concentrates on pho noodles with its limited food menu displaying only beef noodle soups (Pho Bo), chicken noodle soups (Pho Ga) and a selection of drinks.

In all of my visits at Pho Ann, I often have the waiter asking if I would like to have my bean sprouts cooked or fresh. Decisions decisions!!! Definitely something I don't encounter at any other Vietnamese restaurant but it's good to know that you get those options.

Personally, I like them fresh

As part of Good Food Month, the restaurants in Cabramatta and the Canley region are showcasing their signature dishes. Pho Ann's signature is their Pho Bo Dac Biet (Combination Beef Noodle Soup). That is pretty damn special when there is so much competition in the area. Pho Ann's version uses a generous combination of various meats from their pho-focused menu including rare beef, cooked beef, brisket beef, tendon, tripe and even thick slices of spicy beef name a few! The broth was rich that it was quite hard to finish the entire bowl. It wasn't too sweet so I did had to rely on the usual condiments like the lemon and mint. The noodles that Pho Ann restaurant uses was slightly thinner than what I often see at most Vietnamese restaurants around Sydney. It gets you incredibly full but it satisfies the pho cravings. 

Pho Bo Dac Biet - small ($9.50)

Food porn!

I also tried the Pho Tai (rare beef) on another visit here. Again, the broth was rich and the serving size was generous for a small bowl. I loved how soft and tender the beef was once it was cooked in the broth. Add the usual crunchy onions, coriander, spring onion, Vietnamese mint and a dab of lemon and you got yourself a yummy, fragrant bowl of beef pho. Oh yesss! 

Pho Tai - small ($8.50)

As usual, I always like to have a cold, refreshing soya-bean milk to drink on the side. This version however seemed to be a bit more milky than how I usually enjoyed. 

I wouldn't jump the gun and pronounce this as the best pho in Sydney (yet) because there is still so many other pho joints that I haven't tried yet including Pho Viet and the many Vietnamese restaurants at Flemington and Marrickville. My parents reckon it's one of their favourites which is saying something because they can be a bit elitist with pho. Plus the service was friendly in all of my visits. It may be one of Cabramatta's best kept secrets but it sure gets people lining up outside the door on a very hot day. I even had to share my table with a couple of strangers in one of my visits because all the other tables were full. Judging from my visits at Pho Ann so far, I would say that it does satisfy my tastebuds with the tender and flavoursome meat. It's also nice to see an uncomplicated menu where all you need to choose is what bowl of pho, beef or chicken, suits you on the day. Will certainly return again soon to try one of the many other pho bowls yummm!

Pho Ann Restaurant
Shop 10-12/70-72 John Street Cabramatta NSW (enter via Belvedere Arcade between Subway and Tan Ky Noodle House)
(02) 9723 2529
Pho Ann on Urbanspoon


  1. Pho for everyone! Pho tai! Oh yes indeed!


  2. Dong Ba in Cabramatta has the best pho for me ^^. It's specialises in Bun Bo Hue, but their Special Rare Beef Pho trumps all !

    1. dong ba is a fave for my family as well :). haven't tried the pho yet tho so should b interesting.

  3. Hmmm i haven't been to Pho Ann either but thanks for the tip! Will have to check out their pho dac biet asap!

  4. have tried this a while ago and yeah have to say it's pretty good! pho tau bay still holds my #1

    1. haha my folks finally gave pho tau bay a go and they loved it especially the meat! pho ann is still one of their faves in the cabra area

  5. mm~~ I love my bean sprouts cooked! It's nice to know they will ask :)
    gah, summer is coming up - must get my pho dose before the heat comes at me and i need to wait another year before a pho fix! :P

    - Cassie

  6. I haven't been to Pho Ann, but I feel a visit coming on in my near future.

  7. Please understand that ''Pho An'' in Cabramatta, and "Pho Ann" (Ann) in Bankstown. They are quite similar to each other. But I like both :)