Jan 9, 2024 - Food and Drink

Bite Club: Phở gà at Friendship Kitchen

A photo of a bowl of noodle soup next to a cup of tea.

The perfect cure for a rainy day. Photo: Meira Gebel/Axios

Sometimes you need a bowl of steaming hot soup to get you through the dark, cold days of winter.

  • For me, that meant stopping by Friendship Kitchen last week for some phở gà — Vietnamese chicken soup bathed in a variety of herbs and spices including ginger, star anise and clove.

The menu: What I love most about Friendship Kitchen is how its menu caters to both meat lovers and vegetarian types — offering Vietnamese comfort foods (and their meatless variations) like garden rolls, shaken beef, banh mi and sticky garlic chicken wings.

  • The staple item here is the pho, where the bone broth is slow-cooked for 10 hours.

The bite: Love at first sip. The golden, clear broth was rich with silken fat and sweet lemongrass flavor — complemented by tender chicken, sweet onion, a squeeze of lime and crispy shallots on top.

The bottom line: Do yourself a favor and, rather than doing takeout, slurp to your delight at the counter of Friendship Kitchen's Kerns cafe. There's nothing better than enjoying pho when it's transported from ladle to bowl in a few seconds.

  • Plus: "U Got It Bad" by Usher and other early aughts R&B hits were playing when I was there.
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