When Phở Hòa on Shattuck closed down, a part of me collapsed. No more bò kho? Granted that I can only have a bite or two in one sitting, or Mom would be worried about bò kho giving me a fever, it’s still comforting to know that a bowl of this supertender beef stew is only a few minutes walk away, or simply that it exists at a restaurant. Many a times I have seen Vietnamese restos, especially those in Houston, advertise bò kho on their menu but claim that they’re out of it when you order. So I felt in quite a shock fearing that bò kho has left me alone for good.
Then Mudpie, also a bò kho fan, found Phở Hà. We went and asked to make sure they have it. It’s no Berkeley, Phở Hà is in San Jose, but we’ll take what we can get.
Their plastic bowls and utensils aren’t all that splendid. Their miến gà (cellophane noodle soup with chicken) is decent but their phở áp chảo (pan-fried rice noodle) is too overfilled with thick brown sauce to sing.
Nonetheless, we’ve come here for bò kho after all. And both Dad and Mudpie use up their whole loaf of crusty bread to wipe clean every last bit of that red, spice-ladened beefy juice. I’d say the trip ends well.
Address: Phở Hà (next to the Grand Century Mall)
951 McLaughlin Avenue
San Jose, CA 95122-2612