ITK 02.13.20

Timmy Ha loves pho. So it’s fortunate that the Marina High School graduate works at a restaurant specializing in the staple Vietnamese broth.

Ha is a server at Pho Fresh, the newly opened shop in the former Plates Com Tam space on Fremont Boulevard in Seaside. As the name suggests, they do one thing. “We strive for something simple, fast and easy,” Ha says. “I like it.”

But the restaurant’s pho challenge might not be so fast or easy. Finish six pounds of beef, noodles and broth – in 30 minutes, that is – and winners get a shirt, some fame and the meal for free. It’s something Ha has yet to see.

Weekly: Why do a pho challenge?

Ha: It’s fun. The price is $25 – that’s if you lose. But it’s definitely doable.

Define doable.

Two pounds of noodles, one pound of beef. Three pounds of broth – wow, that’s a lot. But it won’t be like you’re having bad pho. I haven’t seen it yet, but I want to witness it.

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You should try it.

Whoa – Yeah, I think I would try it. But I’d make sure I’m really, really hungry.

What do Plates regulars think?

They ask for things we used to have, but we just want to serve good soup. The most common questions we get are, “Do you have a vegetarian option?” or “Do you have chicken?” Traditionally, Vietnamese enjoy beef. We want to listen to the customer, but we want to keep it simple.

Do you ever get tired of pho, being around it so much?

No! For me, I enjoy eating pho on my break. The saucer – pour hoisin and Sriracha, squeeze the lime into that. I like a side of white onion with vinegar. All those different flavors all at once, what’s not to like about that?

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(1) comment

Sarah Jones

Still looking for good Pho in this county, I can’t wait to try

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