Portland >Food & Dining > Silk By Pho Van Vietnamese
1012 NW Glisan St, Portland, OR | Directions 9720945.526421 -122.681350
Mon-Sat 11am-3pm, 5pm-10pm
Neighborhoods: Pearl, Neighbors West - Northwest
When simple, fresh ingredients are brought together, such as ginger and lemongrass or garlic and turmeric, the resulting flavor becomes larger than the sum of its parts. The dishes coming out of Silk's kitchen are evidence of this, as is the front of house, where plates of traditional Vietnamese cuisine are paired with a sleek, modern dining room. The outcome is an exalted approach to ordinarily humble recipes.
Probably Portland’s most high-end pho experience, this is the Pho Van empire’s schmancier spot—your pho comes with side of posh decor and snazzy Pearl people. And during their daily Silky Hour (not making that up), it’s only $4.
Unfriendly unwelcoming... don't go – If I could choose a minus rating I would. Two of my friends and I stopped for happy hour in the Silk bar on May 4th, Wednesday evening. The bartender was unsmiling, unwelcoming and just plain rude. The drinks were good but we certainly felt that we were imposing on him. The place was completely empty and I understand why. Stay away, they don't want your business or need it apparently. The dining room was completely deserted as well. The one star covers the drink, everything else was horrendous....
Where's the beef? Are they re-serving leftovers? – My wife and I ate at Silk last night. I ordered a lemongrass beef noodle dish that was the chef's special. We had already been to another place for appetizers so we weren't starving. I ate half of my dish and took the rest of it home for leftovers. Our server removed my dish to the kitchen, wrapped it up and brought us a take-away box.
In re-heating the dish tonight, I discovered that all of the lemongrass beef was missing - all I had been given was a box of pho noodles and veggies. I did not pick off the top of my bowl, but ate from one side of the dish to the middle, so I know exactly how much food, including the meat, I had leftover. The beef had obviously been removed by our server. All of it.
It's entirely possible the beef was re-used by the restaurant, although I will never know for sure. I don't ever plan to return to Silk again. I called to speak to the manager, but he was not there. I do plan to follow up with my complaint. There are plenty of Vietnamese restaurants in Portland to choose from besides this dishonest place.
Loved this restaurant – I really enjoyed dinner at this restaurant. Thought the food was innovative, with exquisite flavours. Friendly helpful service. We had a really enjoyable evening here.
what a waste of a brunch – I was visiting Portland for the holidays and come the morning of January 1st, a friend and i had set out to find some brunch. another friend had caught glimpse of us walking by and called us in to Silk. i saw that it was Vietnamese and was instantly down for the idea. see, I live in Seattle, a city full of fantastic pho, and had been craving it since being down in Portland. My excitement quickly turned into disappointment. Silk's service was less than impressionable. i'd get better service at a teriyaki take out store. i looked through the menu and found the pho, offered only in one outrageously overpriced bowl (considering that Silk has confirmed their high use of MSG - which is disgusting on a whole different level) and the pho noodles were mushy and soggy. not good at all. at one point, i had to get up to get my own refill since no one had bothered checking in on the table. i left Silk and never looked back. I've never been more disappointed with a pho experience.
Beware of High Use of MSG – My family and I enjoy many different types of Asian food and eat out regularly. Our young two-year-old daughter loves Asian flavors in general, although we usually stick to a few of our high-quality favorites so that we know what we are getting. With one of our favorites closed, we decided to try Silk, which was nearby. We regret our decision dearly. Our daughter ate food from the various dishes we had ordered, and particularly enjoyed a soup with chicken broth. Shortly after eating, she broke out in hives all over her body, which came and went for a couple of days. She has had no previous incident of food allergies, and has been exposed to an extremely wide variety of foods. A doctor explained to us that hives are a common result of ingesting a relatively large portion of MSG, especially in children. It was explained that our daughter does not have a food allergy, but experienced a reaction to a poison. Whether we react strongly to MSG or not, we are still ingesting poison into our bodies. When we called Silk to ask about their use of MSG, we were told that it is used in nearly all of their dishes, and in very high amounts in their broth (I credit them in at least being honest). As people concerned with what we put into our bodies (as most of us are), we were shocked to learn that an establishment that is regarded as high-quality (and has prices to match) uses MSG throughout their food. We ignorantly thought we stayed away from cheap Asian restaurants to avoid ingesting MSG. We suggested to Silk that they add a small disclaimer at the bottom of their menu that most (if not all) of their food contains MSG. There are many people who can not tolerate MSG in any amount and it actually can be life-threatening for some people who suffer from asthma and severe allergies. And while I know we can always ask about the presence of MSG in food, some staff may not be well-informed and some may simply not be inclined to be honest about such things. Food that tastes great -- even Vietnamese food -- does not need to contain MSG. It is a cheaper and faster way to produce certain results, but at a restaurant such as Silk, it is purely a way for them to make their profit margin higher at a cheaper cost to them. I ask you to think twice before supporting this restaurant and challenge the owners to think about their food practices.
Not as good as it was! – Am not quite sure it happens, but why when a restaurant is good, can they not keep up the quality and be consistent? The broth in the Pho was NOT good and the noodles used to be wonderful and they were tough...We haven't gone back, but may try it one last time...
Horrible Service – My boyfriend and I stopped in to have lunch because we love Pho. It was a late lunch and they were busy but not slammed. We waited for a few minutes to be seated - no one spoke to us. So we thought it wouldn’t be a big deal if we just sat down. We were finally spoken to about 10 minutes later and the lady asked if we seated ourselves - yes. She then walked away and no one spoke to us for 10 more minutes. Then another lady brought us 2 waters. We said thank you and received an eye roll! Finally my boyfriend and I had enough and left. I have never been treated so badly at a restaurant!!!
Never going Back! Great Service guys!
Consistent and elegant – This is the most consistent restaurant I've been to In Portland. They serve their version of the most asked for Vietnamese dishes. Although it may not be "authentic", they have added a "twist" to several dishes that are very clever. It is a beautiful place with pleasant, helpful staff. They also use the best quality ingredients. My only complaint is not being served enough mint and cilantro.
Fantastic lunches... – Perhaps my favorite restaurant in Portland. Everything I have tried so far has been terrific. I've eaten there more than any other restuarant in Portland and have yet to be disappointed. This last week I went twice for lunch and was pleased both times. The only small complaint is that sometimes the entrees come out before the apps, but as I was dining with small children in tow they did say that they tell the kitchen to bring it up as soon as possible when kids are involved so not a big deal and it did keep the kids happy. Highly recommended. If I could I'd eat there all the time....
something in my food – We found a little insect which I can't name but starts with a "c" in our salad and they only offered to buy the one meal not mine as well. I'm not sure what else is scurrying around in the kitchen.
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