Within ten minute of staring at my phone and avoiding human interaction, the waitress came plodding along with a large black/red bowl and a side-plate with semi-fresh herbs. I took my photos and attacked, hesitation rife in my stomach.
Spooning in my first mouthfuls was underwhelming. There was a beef flavour but overall the taste was quite watered down with no aromatics pushing through. Along with the two kinds of noodles, the oddly textured beef pieces (some tender, some chewy), the plate of bruised herbs and a smattering of bean sprouts, I found the bowl grew tired the further I explored.
One of those Pho bowls where you leave more than half the broth even after attacking it with all sorts of condiments like a rabid heart resuscitator trying to pump life into it, but alas, to no avail.
These recommendations are just personal opinions based on my palate, things change, chefs get fired or replaced, places open-close, relocate, so take it all with a pinch of MSG and discover your own gems too. But please do try a few of these, they have been researched exhaustively.
"Sadness is tempered by umami, grief by the motion of slurping, hope restored by the ladling of glistening, fatty broth"