With the plethora of Vietnamese restaurants in Melbourne, you could be forgiven for wondering 'why am I waiting for a table here'? But once you've finally sat down, and Wat da Pho's speedy service delivers a steaming bowl of fresh pho to your table, you'll understand the popularity of this place.
For under $10 you get a good-sized bowl of Pho (MSG free, which is a big plus), with your choice of noodles, various beef options or chicken or vegetarian.
It's not all about the Pho though. Wat da Pho also offers its own version of other Vietnamese staples including spring rolls and rice paper rolls in a variety of flavours, and 'Da sticks' – chargrilled skewers of either honey sesame chicken, caramelised pork, lemongrass beef or lemongrass tofu.
Although only a small restaurant, it's not lacking in atmosphere. Long communal tables or private tables as well as streetside dining outdoors encourage lingering catch-ups with friends.
While the 'pho' might be more authentic in Richmond or Footscray, this part of town has been lacking good, cheap, fresh and simple dine-in or takeout options for some time. Wat da Pho is one of the first of a recent spate of restaurants along Clarendon Street that have started to fill this gap for hungry locals.