The weather in Orange County has finally cooled down, and what could be better than getting a bowl of Bún bò Huế? Fortunately, I work near Westminster, an area nicknamed “Little Saigon” because the area is made up of primarily Vietnamese restaurants and residents. One of the most popular restaurant to have Bún bò Huế is a place called Bún bò Huế So 1.
What is Bún bò Huế?
It is a popular Vietnamese soup containing rice vermicelli (bún) and beef (bò), and Huế is a city in central Vietnam associated with the cooking style of the former royal court.The dish has a balance of spicy, sour, salty and sweet flavors and the predominant flavor is that of lemon grass. Compared to phở,the noodles are thicker and rounder.
Bún bò Huế So 1.is definitely a hole-in-the-wall place, not for the faint of heart. When you walk in, you’ll get a big whiff of fishsauce or whatever that smell is. Don’t be alarmed. Sit down, order, eat. Eventually, the strong Asian food smell dissipates while you’re eating.
My coworker ordered the traditional Bún bò Huế special combo, which contained beef, Vietnamese style pork sausage, pig feet, blood cake, and the noodles in the broth. I am not a fan of blood cake, so I chose #25, which had the beef, tendon, and pig feet. To many people who aren’t used to eating ethnic Asian food, both dishes may seem too “exotic”, but this restaurant does serve other variations of the soup.
Bún bò is commonly served with lime wedges, cilantro sprigs, diced green onions, thinly sliced banana blossom, mint, basil, or Vietnamese coriander (rau ram), and raw bean sprouts. Chili sauce is added to the soup according to taste.
The large bowl came to $9 per person, which included tax and tip. It definitely hit the spot on a cold, rainy day.
Bún bò Huế So 1 is located at 15450 Brookhurst St in Westminster, CA 92683.
They are closed on Thursdays.