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Final Pho CHAMPIONSHIP: Pho Thanh Lich vs. Brodard Chateau

Categories: Final Pho
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Pho Thanh Lich: Il capo di tutti capi of pho in Orange County, ready to face down ANY challenger
This is it--the final to our epic 16-team Final Pho. Dozens of pho bowls slurped to determine which is the best pho in Orange County. The championship match took place between the favorite, Pho Thanh Lich, and an unlikely finalist: Brodard Chateau. Now, the drama--or, rather, lack of.

"So we're all in agreement that Pho Thanh Lich is the winner?" Dave asked Edwin and I as we sat at Pho Thanh Lich.

We hadn't even placed our final order for the Westminster dive, yet we all agreed. It was a foregone conclusion; its competitor, Brodard Chateau, only made it into the final because it beat a weak field, then pulled off a massive upset in the semifinal by beating old warhorse Pho Nguyen Hue, which committed a John Capilari-esque choke. AHHHHH . . . anyhoo, we all agreed Brodard Chateau is a fine restaurant, but not for pho. Its pho is overpriced, underseasoned and ultimately forgettable. That, of course, isn't the case for Pho Thanh Lich. And just in case we were deluding ourselves, we brought in a guest judge: Fat Dude on a Diet blogger Niyaz Pirani.
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Dave: Not a picture of people taking pictures! Me: I like taking pictures of people taking pictures. Niyaz: Taking pictures.

You can read Edwin and Shuji's takes on Pho Thanh Lich below. Me? Here are two more reasons via photos why Pho Thanh Lich dominates its competition.

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Now THAT'S brisket

Look at that line of fat on that hunk of meat! It just oozed into my palate and my bowl. This cut alone beats about 60 percent of the phos in the county.

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Che: Good for what ails you

And all meals end with a complimentary bowl of che, a Vietnamese dessert. I originally thought it was a bowl of cream of potato soup--look at its murky color, that hunk of orange that looks like a carrot. All sweet potato, seaweed, mung bean and the unlikely sweets that make Vietnamese desserts among the best . . . but I'm fading here.

Niyaz agreed; Shuji agreed. No need to waste your time with Brodard Chateau. I'm out of gas; star anise has now overtaken oxygen in my system. Pho-get about it, it's pho-king good, I'm pho-ull of pho . . . and out of things to say.

WINNER, AND THE CERTIFIED BEST PHO IN AMERICA: Pho Thanh Lich. But boy, are we blessed with the damn soup. . . . Now, let the second-guessing begin!

Pho Thanh Lich, 14500 Brookhurst St., Westminster, (714) 531-5789.
Brodard Chateau, 9100 Trask Ave., Garden Grove, (714) 899-8273; brodard.net.

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ROUND 1 WINNERS:
Pho Dakao vs. Kim Loan: Pho Dakao
AnQi vs. Benley: Benley
Pho Thanh Lich vs. Pho Vinh Ky 2: Pho Thanh Lich
Pho Kimmy vs. Pho Quang Trung: Pho Quang Trung
Pho Hien Vuong vs. Pho Nguyen Hue: Pho Nguyen Hue
Brodard Chateau vs. S Vietnamese Fine Dining: Brodard Chateau
Pho Thang Long vs. Quan Hop: Quan Hop
Pho 79 vs. Pho 86: Pho 86

ROUND 2 WINNERS:
Pho Dakao Vs. Pho Nguyen Hue: Pho Nguyen Hue
Benley vs Brodard Chateau: Brodard Chateau
Pho Thanh Lich vs. Quan Hop: Pho Thanh Lich
Pho 86 vs. Pho Quang Trung: Pho Quang Trung

SEMI-FINAL WINNERS:

Pho Nguyen Hue vs. Brodard Chateau: Brodard Chateau
Pho Thanh Lich vs. Pho Quang Trung: Pho Thanh Lich
My Voice Nation Help
20 comments
MeMet
MeMet

I truly do agree with you - Now, a growing number of doctors admit that weed treatment program is cost-effective in a number of sicknesses--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Semi di Cannabis

The Iceman
The Iceman

Pho 94 all the way!!!!  - Anaheim

Stlouisn23
Stlouisn23

Yall need revisit 79 and order the "see wat" to accompany your bowl of pho...now thats a meal of a champ!

Occomm
Occomm

I don't see a Vietnamese guy in the picture.  What do they know about Pho?  Pho should be judge by Edwin or Gustavo.  Unless their last name is Nguyen or Tran, they can make this judgement.  Next time, get me to do the judging for you.  I've been eating this stuff for 45 years of my life.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

That's pretty dumb of you to say.

David
David

Gustavo,

A lot of people are biased, especially Vietnamese people. They think what they like is the best and what other like sucks. I'm Viet and I personally do not like Pho Kimmy or Pho 79. I like Thanh Lich myself as well.

Handsup01
Handsup01

Next year you guys need to put Bamboo Bistro in the mix.  who knew you could find perfect pho in Newport Beach?

Danlu
Danlu

Pho Kimmy is the best. Those dudes don't know how to eat Pho !!.

Pho Real
Pho Real

I second that.  Pho Kimmy is my favorite.  I used to like Pho LTT, but that was years ago; they have gone downhill since (their banh cuon is still OK).  I have to do a blind taste between Thanh Lich and Kimmy.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

Sure we do!

Daniel
Daniel

Sounds like 1. You had an off day from Pho Kimmy and 2. You compared it to a pho ga place, which doesn't make sense, as they are completely different dishes.

Niyazpirani
Niyazpirani

... also, thanks guys - dave, gustavo, edwin - for having me and wifey out. i've been eating chicken soup all week, might have to switch that up with chicken pho soon. =) see you guys soon.

Dwayne
Dwayne

Call them the Butler Chateau

20ftJesus
20ftJesus

You guys are all a bunch of idiots, except for Niyaz -- geez dude, you don't look like the same person anymore.

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

Wow, long time no hear! How was your trip back home to Planet Pendejo?

Kat Nguyen
Kat Nguyen

Whaaaaa? Pho Thanh Lich??? As in the same one that used to be in the ol' Pizza Hut? I didn't see that one coming. Hafta say though, I went back to my beloved Pho 79 on Hazard and found the broth to be a tad on the sweet side, blech. Hopefully that was a fluke. Very fun to read guys, thanks for the trip down memory lane for lil ol me. Still eating til my pants hurt (just in LA now)... Cheers! Kat (Gluttonista). ;p P.S. Add Pho Lu to the hat next year. ;p

JB
JB

As Bill Raftery would say...Pho Thanh Lich takin' it to the TIN!!!

Mr. Rosewater
Mr. Rosewater

A lot of work to reaffirm a verdict you'd already delivered in a previous "Best Of," but it's often important to verify a panegyric's worthiness--it's the same reason no one sleeps with a beautiful girl once. Glad you guys had fun. Bring on the tacos!

gustavoarellano
gustavoarellano

Hey, I thought Pho Nguyen Hue or Dakao would've taken Thanh Lich down—but upsets are upsets, and results are results. Now, let me get around to planning a taco tourney...

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