Cheap Eats 2008: Pho 88

Why go: The big tureens of long-simmered beef soup, the so-called Vietnamese penicillin, with its fragrant aromatics and subtle spices. At its best, the broth here is richer, darker, and more full-bodied than that found at other pho parlors.

What to get: Numbers 3 and 5, which include a variety of meats—beef tendon, fatty brisket—that add yet more richness to an already full-bodied soup; mango bubble tea.

Best for: A quick eat-in pick-me-up or a simple carryout meal with the power to revive the tired.

Insider tip: Though Westerners are not inclined to eat pho in the morning the way Vietnamese do, the broth is at its best early in the day; it pays to come early (Pho 88 opens at 10) and stash your takeout order in the fridge for later.

Open daily for lunch and dinner.

See all Cheap Eats 2008 restaurants 

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.