It’s difficult to create a restaurant voice that will be heard above the million other Vietnamese noodle soup restaurants throughout Edmonton, but Phonatics truly deserves the recognition. Here’s to some of the best pho broth (if not the best) I’ve had this side of the globe.
Phonatics has been around on the north side of Edmonton for quite a while now and has only recently undergone a transition to new ownership. The restaurant itself, though, has barely changed. The new owners pay tribute to the original soup recipe and have even retained some of the same employees.
If the only difference, then, is the ownership, how is this restaurant any different from its predecessor?
The fact of the matter is that the ownership is Phonatics’ turning point. I’ve heard and read a lot of reviews about the old owners and their approach to (or disregard for) customer service. The new owners plan to change this.
It’s a heartening task. Any good restaurant knows that it doesn’t matter how good the food is if customer service is lacking. Phonatics might have excellent noodle soup, but I’m more likely to go to Pho Hoan Pasteur if I have to wade through a sea of rudeness and contempt just to eat some pho.
Luckily, at Phonatics, this is no longer the case.
We started with spring rolls (fantastic when dipped in fish sauce mixed with a splash of chili) and ordered the vermicelli (bun) bowl with chicken, pork, beef, and shrimp, as well as the pho with rare beef and flank.
There are times when the soup broth you’re sipping on can be extremely thin, watery, and generally tasteless. Phonatics’ broth was on a different level: so full and flavourful and rich that I was mildly shocked. I’ve never had such rich soup broth at a pho restaurant before! As I continued to sip on my soup (which I sometimes don’t even bother drinking), I began to regret ordering a small. I couldn’t get enough.
The rare beef was great; the flank was tender and flaky. I nabbed a piece of grilled beef from Taner’s bun bowl and reveled in the smoky taste.
Phonatics delivered us a more-than-satisfactory meal for less than $30 and they did so with a smile. I’ve no doubt that I’ll be returning to this north side gem frequently in the future and I strongly encourage that you do the same. I hope you enjoy their mind-blowing soup as much as I did!
13138 137 Avenue
Edmonton, AB T6V 1G7