Pho Dong Huong – Great Food that WON’T Break the Bank

On a whim a few weeks ago, my friend Norma and I tried out Pho Dong Huong in Arvada for lunch. Becoming a trend to seek out fantastic Asian food, we figured we would try out this new place that Norma drives past often.

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Situated at 9050 W 58th Ave, Arvada, CO 80002, Pho Dong Huong is fairly easy to find. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Nov 2013

Nice and easy to find, Pho Dong Huong is situated right in Arvada, Colorado, complete with plenty of free parking. Inside, the atmosphere is warm and welcoming, with a friendly waitstaff and large windows allowing plenty of sunlight. The menu is impressive, listing numerous options for appetizers, lunches, mains, and more.

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Crab Rangoons at Pho Dong Huong in Arvada – one of the many appetizers listed on their menu.Kirsten Ebey, Nov 2013

Norma and I settled on the Crab Rangoons and Shrimp Spring Rolls for our appetizers.

Each came with their own sauce, and were appropriately proportioned. Get this –

not only were both apps delicious, they each cost less than $5 bucks. What?

Yeah, I know – unheard of.

Trust me – it gets better. 

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Vermicelli Noodle Bowls at Pho Dong Huong. Credit: Kirsten Ebey, Nov 2013. Click on the picture to be routed to their menu.

While there are a plethora of noodle bowls to choose from (as well as other dishes), we both had our hearts set on the Vermicelli Noodle Bowls. With a choice of beef, pork, chicken, shrimp and combination, it was really tough to choose. As pictured above, the beef was excellent and the mini eggs rolls added on top were such a cool bonus! The bowls were giant, and rang up under $8 each. Incredible. They were the type of meals you come across that even though your stomach absolutely cannot hold anything additional, you keep eating because the ingredients and flavors are so delicious. How is this possible under $10 per dish? Honestly, I couldn’t tell you. You’ll just have to try it out yourself.

Pho Dong Huong is seriously a hidden gem that you must check out for some legit Chinese food. Also, as described, the prices are amazing, so you won’t break the bank visiting! Check it out and let us know what you think.

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Ace Eat Serve- Asian Comfort Food & Ping Pong

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Ace Restaurant, situated at 501 E 17th Ave in Denver, CO. This shot doesn’t come close to doing the incredible porch justice, but you can make out the mist pretty well! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

You heard it right – Asian comfort food AND a dedicated Ping Pong (or Table Tennis) Hall reside at Ace Eat Serve Restaurant in Denver, CO. Add a bar and spacious outdoor patio with mist ducts along the rooftop edges, and you’ve got a feature-packed restaurant that’s perfect for numerous occasions such as hanging out, lunch with the family, or drinks after work.

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With so many faves, it’s so hard to choose just one! Or, two… or five. Click on the pic for Ace’s menu! Shawna Jones, pictured. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

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Pictured is the drink Ms. Shawna Jones ordered: Ace’s blackcherry soda and vodka. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

My friend, Shawna Jones, and I biked the 5 miles (roundtrip) to Ace on one of the hottest days we’ve had this summer, and sat out on the patio for lunch. First thing on our mind: cooling off. The falling mist was glorious, and checked that issue right off our list. Second thing on our mind: cocktails – that bike ride in the heat kind of wore us out, so in addition to water, we thought it best to order a tasty adult beverage.

While Shawna ordered a Vodka and ACE Blackcherry Soda (delicious, by the way- pictured right), I grabbed a Shiner Ruby, my favorite summer seasonal brewski that mixes grapefruit with ginger; also, what a great beer pairing for our upcoming feast.

The menu features a ton of Asian-style food favorites – dumplings, pork ramen, bibimbap, you name it. There are so many favorites listed that both Shawna and I ordered a total of five items to share – it’s THAT HARD TO CHOOSE. I had been to Ace one time previously and had an idea from that experience of what I just had to order: steamed vegetables (only $3 bucks for a heaping plateful of garlic- and ginger-infused, steamed veggies – that’s a steal!) and a Pork Bao Bun. Shawna ordered the Kalbi (Korean BBQ short beef ribs) and chicken dumplings. We both decided that since we were there, we really needed to just go for it, and ordered the vegetable potstickers as well – it was necessary. So, as mentioned earlier, a feast was had.

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Table sauces pictured: Black Bean Sauce (left) and Crisp Chili Oil (right). Click on the picture for a link to Ace’s Menu! Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

We waited probably about 20 minutes, which is such great timing. Although Ace‘s dishes appear to be so simple, each dish has crazy, complex flavor. Paired with their two signature table sauces, you can’t go wrong: the Crisp Chili Oil sauce (my favorite – I dump it on everything) consists of dried red chilies, sesame oil, and textured vegetable Protein while the Black Bean Sauce consists fermented soy beans, chilies, dark soy, and garlic (info gathered from Ace’s Official Website).

Pictured top, and clockwise: Veggie potstickers, steamed veggies, and Pork Bao Bun. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

Of everything we ordered, I honestly can’t pick a favorite – everything was amazing, and adding the Crisp Chili Oil sauce adds a whole new twist, bringing out flavors of the dish you would not otherwise notice as well as serving as a great enhancement for very lightly marinated, steamed veggies. If I had to guess though, I would think that the short ribs have found an irreplaceable spot in Shawna’s heart. In addition to the amazing food, the ambience is so incredible – there’s a very large hall within the restaurant dedicated for Ping Pong enthusiasts everywhere. On their website, you can view the rules of the game, as well as spot openings for when you and your friend can grab a table. The outside patio is perfect for these summer months, with the cool mist making it incredibly refreshing and comfortable to sit in the partial sun. The menu is built for all ages – kids menu, drink menu with happy hour specials, dessert menu, and juice bar in addition to the lunch and dinner menus, of course. There’s no way to peg what type of person to bring, and for what type of occasion – Ace Restaurant is so versatile yet welcoming that it’s the perfect location for business lunches as well as a stop during your night on the town.

Pictured above: Korean Short Ribs (left) and Chicken Dumplings (right). Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013

There are plenty of places to park on the street, as well as bike racks available (remember your Ulock!). An extra bonus is being able to see your bike from the patio!

I hope you have the opportunity to stop and check out this great place; Ace Eat Serve is such a cool place to eat and hang out, and I can’t wait to go for my third time! There are so many places to eat in Denver, but sometimes you just find places that really resonate with you – Ace is definitely one of them. Go check them out! NOW.

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The amazing menu of Ace Restaurant. Credit: Kirsten Ebey June 2013 Click the picture to be taken to Ace’s menu!

 

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