Savvy Cebuanos have long frequented American chef Jason Hyatt’s PHAT Pho (acronym for Pretty Hot And Tempting) for its namesake fragrant Vietnamese noodle soup, and now with the help of The Moment Group (the team behind other local favourites ‘Cue Modern Barbeque, Namnam and Burger Bar, Manilans can get their paws on his signature beefy broth too. This February the group’s co-founders Abba Napa, Eliza Antonino and Jon Syjuco unbolted the doors to an intimate, laidback space in Serendra that mirrors a Vietnamese street-food joint with bright neon signs, floor-to-ceiling blackboards and red metal barstools.
Staying true to the Cebu original and Hyatt’s flavours, the open kitchen plates up modernised takes on the classics, like grilled satay meats topped with dried shallots, banh mi (baguette sandwich) liberally smothered with chicken pâté, and goi cuon (fresh rice paper rolls) filled with crunchy vegetables and chilled shrimp. But no visit to this restaurant would be complete without sampling a bowl of Pho Special, which comes thick with Angus beef, meatballs, braised beef tendon, a coriander, cilantro and Thai basil garnish, and a selection of hoisin, fish and sriracha sauces to adjust the brew to your palate. So far, pho good!
G/F / Serendra / Bonifacio Global City / +63 2 804 1646 / 11am-11pm daily / facebook.com/PhatPhoMNL