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Nice Bun!


Tucked on the cusp of the Junction (well away from Chinatown) is a blessing for those who like good bun: Pho Mi Tri Ky, a Vietnamese diamond-in-the-rough that's a cut above the rest.

Vietnamese restaurants throughout the city typically follow a formulaic menu - and Pho Mi Tri Ky is no different. However, while the details look the same on paper, the execution separates this one from the rest, at least when it comes to Bun.

Bun is a simple but satisfying dish that is composed of vermicelli noodles, fresh and pickled veggies, and grilled meat. Favoured with sauces like Nuac Cham and Hoisin, Bun at its best is subtle yet addictive, refreshing yet filling. Unfortunately, though, the dish is rarely given the respect it deserves.

Common crimes include soggy vegetables soaked in a pool of vinegary, watery sauce, and meat that is fatty, tough, and sparse. But Pho Mi Tri Ky allows none of this.

I ordered my favourite (with grilled pork, shredded pork, and a spring roll) and was soon delighted by their improvment on what Pho Hung has taught me to accept. Rather than a fast-food alternative, this bowl of goodness was something special. The careful presentation, quality of ingredients, proper preparation and extensive yet delicate flavours indicated that the dish was created with pride. The waitress, reinforcing this notion, insisted on giving us a lesson in how to eat the dish, shyly but earnestly noting "mmm, it's good." Free iced tea (in place of the usual steaming hot pots due to the blisteringly warm temperature outside) was an additional considerate touch.

You wouldn't expect this slightly shifty streetcorner to house the expertise, pride, or warmth that we were shown. It's a nice surprise - and definitely worth a follow-up visit.

Pho Mi Tri Ky, 394 Pacific Ave West, 416 766 5327


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