Pho Kim Penh Xe Lua is a 24/7 Vietnamese pho place.
The Olympic hangover also left me with a nasty cold so I decided to try some Vietnamese penicillin. I did a postal code search on Dine Here and to my surprise, this was the closest pho place to my house. I was expecting shabby and was not disappointed. The restaurant was clean however and the chairs were comfortable and looked relatively new.
The soup options are laid out based on "difficulty" which is interesting starting with beginner and so on. I'm not a big fan of tendon or congealed blood (not sure if that was even on the menu) so I just stuck with my usual rare beef and brisket which serves me well. Everything was pretty much what you'd expect from Vancouver pho with a tasty broth, tender meat and a decent sized side dish of sprouts and basil. The bowl broth level did seem a little low but it didn't bother me because I don't eat it all anyways.
The staff was really friendly and at 7 dollars for a large bowl, the price was pretty standard. I would return especially if I have a late night craving since its open 24 hours.
I work in the area and I am a regular at this place. The servers are all nice. The one lady who I think may be one of the owners or something is very friendly and polite. She's always very nice to me when I see her and we have a chat every now and then. The food comes out fast too. Within a couple minutes of ordering, your food will be set in front of you. This is perfect for me so I don't have to wait around and worry about how much time I have to get back to work.
It's paid parking on the street since it's along West Broadway at Cambie. There is some parking in the back behind the restaurant which I believe is also paid. The restaurant itself isn't bad. If you go to a lot of smaller ma and pa type Asian restaurants, sharing tables is a common thing. The place is cash only but there are banks all within walking distance (ATM in London Drugs, TD, CIBC, RBC, Vancity). This place can get really busy between 12pm and 1pm to the point where you will be rubbing elbows with the stranger next to you. Even when the restaurant has open space, the servers will normally try to direct you to a particular table to compensate for the upcoming rush of patrons. Other than that, the place is relatively clean so I don't feel grossed out while I eat.
Now, I may not be a pho expert but I think as long as you haven't had pho everyday of your entire life, you will find this place to be pretty good. My friend who is Vietnamese, HATES this place but I love it. I ordered the #9 which is just a simple pho with steak flank. The meat to noodle ratio is great - usually you can get a piece of meat per spoonful of noodles. Their spring rolls are crispy and taste pretty good. The salad rolls are good too. My gf has had the chicken pho and it was okay. Beef is definitely preferred at this place. I've brought several friends/coworkers to this place and they like it too. One friend who I believe can be very critical of his food likes this place too. He ordered some kind of meatball pho with Vietnamese ham and said it was pretty good. Don't know if this matters to anyone, but he also ordered a Vietnamese coffee and said it was way too strong.
The value is pretty good. If I want something that's cheap and healthier than some of the other options in the area, I'll come here. After tax it's $6.75 for a small sized bowl. I think the small and large bowls are the standard sizes you'd find at any other pho place. The big thing for me is the meat/noodle ratio. At many places, it's always too few pieces of meat for your noodles. In those cases I feel like I might as well have just opened a pack of ramen or something. So as mentioned before, I think this place gives you the perfect balance.
If you're in the area or by the Canada Line and want to get your pho fix, this place would be a good fit.
For my best friend and I, this is the place we meet up to catch up and have a good comforting bowl of pho. We share the salad rolls which are really big and the peanut sauce is to die for. My bff orders #7 (mix of steak, tripe, brisket) and I order #1 -- eye round steak (I'm not so adventurous). I've been so many times I don't even know the number any more, but they are pretty consistent. Sometimes the pho tastes better than other times, sometimes I get more steak than other times, but all in all you know what you're going to get. The coconut juice is a treat as well if you want to shell out the 3.50 for it.
The pricing is fairly standard and lemme tell you, when you're coming home from a good night downtown... nothing tastes better... just don't slip on their amazingly slippery floors with your heels. I've almost wiped out in skate shoes so mind your feet.
The decor is typical to any pho place... there is none. There is no rhyme or reason to it, and it does look pretty hole in the wall dingy, but it's kind of part of the charm. The service is pretty good and they recognize you when you come back.
If you're looking for a pho place to satisfy your late night craving, this is the place. It does get busy at night though, so expect to wait if you're going in the after hours setting. If you're not, there is usually parking out back for a small fee (it use to be free) and they have 4 spots (6 - 11) that are free, but NARROW... might get door dings from parking there.
The boyfriend and I decided to grab a quick and cheap dinner. I wanted to give this place a try. We walked in to a more than half empty dining area and almost immediately, I thought I should have chosen a better pick. But I gave it a chance and we sat. In addition to the tea, we asked for water. Bad mistake, water tasted unclean and horrible.
I ordered a dry vermicelli bowl with springrolls and grilled meatball and he, the lemongrass chicken on rice. I have to say, the food was pretty good, I don't think it was "outstanding" (food rating), but it was better than average IMHO.
Service was okay, nothing to write home about. The ambiance was even less to rave about. They are in desparate need of some spring cleaning and major de-cluttering. Like I said in the review title, it's dirty and dingy. But hey, it's a 24hr joint - I guess that's expected.
Went here for lunch. The decor is below average, could definitely use some updating. Have a good assortment of pho, small $5.99, large 6.99. Service was very fast. Had the beef brisket/flank pho. The meat all looked the same to me, but it was tasty. Pho was delicious. Good sized portions. Will return.
Went here late last night.
The service was fast,howver,she added all the springrolls to two plates(there were 9 of us) so we had to split em up.
The pho arrived with a big sticky ball of noodles in the middle of the bowl,which means to me that they portion all the noodles out,and let them sit iin the bowl,then add the soup.Not exactly the freshest way of doing it.
Overall,it is what it is,a vitnamese greasy spoon.
Take it for its face value,and there will be no dissapointments.
I don't have a car to go to those oh-so-authentic places on kingsway so I have to go other places closer to home to satisfy my love of Pho.
I like this place's pho, its flavorful, and well executed. Their condiments are fresh and they include a slice of jalapeno, which few places do and it makes a big difference.
I am a bit disappointed with their portion size. They are SO cheap on the meat and their noodles too. Come on guys.
Still, I like it and go back, despite their hideous decor and the cheapness of the portions.
I always come here for late night pho. It's a bit dirty inside, but the pho tastes great. The place is pretty packed during the late hours. There's sometimes a couple of stray bums outside, so try to get in and out quick.
Despite dining here many times, I can never pronounce or remember the name of this place. In my mind it's just xing xing xing lui :P
I eat lunch here often. I can never remember the name but who cares. The taste of the Pho soup is always exactly the same: good and comforting. I'm not a Pho expert but it hits the spot especially on those rainy cold days. The service is friendly and fast. They always serve tea as well. Unfortunately, the decor is brutally tacky and the place kind of dirty looking but it's one of them hole-n-the-walls and it's cheap. The Banh Mi sandwiches are decent. Cash only.
i just recently started coming here and can only comment on the pho.
I was quite impressed with the pho and the meat. usually the places i go to is missing something to make it a good pho. this place has it all to me. the soup, the meat, the noodles were all great and my standards are quite high. service is a little lacking in initiative but otehrwise they are very polite. the decor is HORRIBLE and table setting is horrible as well but otherwise is it a neat little place that i enjoy going.
We like Vietnamese noodles and we keep walking by this place whenever we go to Peaceful restaurant nearby. This time we decided to come here for dinner. Unfortunately, the service was not good and there were issues with the food. The fried roll that we ordered had some obvious non-food pieces found inside it. The server seldomly acknowledged us in any way; even when taking our order, we can see that she didn't want to be there. I tried waving her down twice for the bill and she would see me but never acknowledged me so I had no idea if she was going to come back to our table. It wasn't until the man from the kitchen (owner?) asked her to give us our bill 5 minutes later that she came by with the bill. We won't be back. Those are the reasons behind my food and service ratings. Value was about the same as all other similar restaurants so I rated it with an average score. I have to give the ambiance a below average rating because the restaurant was not particularly clean, the furniture is old and the menus looked like they were many years old. Prices were written in ink and a lot of it was smudged or faded off and I couldn't read it.
Pho Kim Penh is my favorite pho noodle house. I have not found another place near the Broadway corridor that serves better pho.
I am a regular customer and dine in at least twice a week if not more.
I recommend this place for great pho, speedy service, excellent pricing and their long hours.
Many reviewers fault the restaurant for their ambiance which is a little shabby. However it's the noodles I keep coming back for. I want good food and this place delivers, ambiance be damned.
The pho soup broth is always tasty, though the noodles and meats are a bit hit-and-miss sometimes, overall pretty solid stuff. The curry chicken stew with baguette is delicious (though the addition of one slice of yam is kind of confounding); the baguettes are usually warm and fresh, and the subs are delicious. The spring rolls can be hit-and-miss, and the salad rolls are kind of strangely chewy. The avacado shakes are wonderful.
The ambience is non-existent, service is just there (not great or bad), but it's a 24-hour joint serving delicious hot noodle soup, and a godsend for anybody who finishes work at 10/11pm and can't be bothered to go home to cook. Great place for what it is.
The banh mi (Vietnamese sub) is absolutely killer here, everytime I bite into their pork sub I feel like I'm tasting it for the first time. Amazing, amazing value, especially at $3.50 or so.
Pho is solid, as are the noodles. Spring rolls are greasy and tasty, salad rolls are weak but still decent enough to order once in awhile.
Service is always friendly here, although the nighttime server doesn't bother giving you a hot tea like the daytime crew. She is friendly but usually a bit stressed out.
As a working chef, however, this place is a godsend at 1 in the morning on a Wed. when my hot food options are normally limited to food poisoning at 7-11. Always solid, always tasty.
This is the best place to satisfy your late night pho cravings! Though its not longer officially 24/7, their hours are from like 9am to 7am, or something ridiculously long like that. The decor is pretty sketchy, with the neon lights giving you a headache at times, but you'll probably be staring at your noodles most of the time anyways, so no worries there. The pho is tasty, has good portions of meat, and is oh-so-economical. I can eat quite a bit, and their large is usually pretty filling. For the truly ravenous, the extra large is sure to satisfy! Give this place a try!
Cheap & speedy, but not exactly a place I'd recommend to anyone. I found the noodles to be a little too thin & slightly overcooked, and the broth was a little too seasoned & salty with a slightly sweet after taste. They're not too precise with the order, either. I ordered #14, and got only a couple of pieces of steak and lots of tiny pieces of flank and tendon floating in it. My friend ordered the pho with only steak and still got quite a few pieces of tripe in it. The spring rolls were over-fried and served all cut up like re-fried leftovers. Not the most appetizing.
But all in all, I didn't expect much more than this, so whatever. it's fine.
Because the rating of others were good.
I might had too high expectation.
I ordered a house special pho.
The soup were not bad, but too salty and no cilantro.
In addition, the restraunt smell bad and not clean.