Le Colonial has been quietly serving pho in midtown for the last twenty years, but here's why we're paying attention right now: Ron Wingwee Hsu's new super deluxe version of the Vietnamese dish is made with an impossibly silky broth and crowned with rare foie ($19).
We asked Hsu to walk us through it:
① Raw beef. "I wanted to use beef that would be tender when it was very rare," says Hsu, who builds the dish on a single slice of raw filet mignon, instead of sinewy brisket. When the hot broth hits the meat, it cooks it just a little, but stays nice and rare.
② Noodles. Hsu uses fresh rice noodles, rather than the dehydrated kind, dipping them in boiling water for just about 30 seconds so they retain their texture.
③ Foie gras. A delicately scored piece of Hudson Valley foie gras, deeply caramelized on one side, is still rare and juicy in the middle. "After coloring the foie on one side, the other side gets just a quick kiss--we don't want to overcook it."
④ Oxtail broth. A silky, gently spiced broth is poured at the table. Hsu uses a mix of gelatin-rich oxtail bones and veal shin bones simmered for nearly 10 hours. He infuses it with his own five spice mix.
⑤ Extras. At the table, there's fresh lime, hoisin and Sriracha so you can tinker with your pho until it's perfect.
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