Phở Thìn 13 Lò Đúc [Westminster, Little Saigon]

I love phở. So when I heard about a Northern-style specialist opening, I knew I had to check it out! Apparently this is related to a well-known restaurant in Vietnam? Allegedly.

I arrived roughly 45 minutes after opening on a Sunday, and I was 4th in line on the waitlist. Took about 10-15 minutes to be seated, but the menu is brief, and I was able to order quickly.

Looking around, the restaurant interior is nice and inviting, but I don’t know how long the white leather chairs will stay white; already I saw the side of one at a neighboring table covered in a streak of spilled sriracha! White leather chairs in a restaurant seems like a pretty aggressive aesthetic choice. They’re comfortable, but not likely to last long.

I ordered the #2 (Phở Tái lăn Truyền Thống) and a side of egg poached in broth (Chén hột gà). Iced or hot tea is free of charge, and I ordered hot.

I noticed that there is a jar of pickled garlic on the table along with the standard sriracha and hoisin sauces:

Food came quite quickly! Here’s what it looks like upon arrival:

So how does it taste? Quite good! I’m pretty sure this is my first experience with Northern-style phở, so I don’t have much of a comparative basis, but one can immediately see the difference with the bountiful green onions bathing in the broth. The aroma is quite different, too; I did not taste any anise; instead the broth is imbued with garlic and ginger.

The #2 is what Phở Thìn is known for, as the thinly-sliced beef has been quickly stir-fried with garlic before being added to the broth. The noodles were also tasty, and they’re of the wider, flatter variety. I did appreciate that this is a well-balanced bowl of phở – some places really overdo it with an obscene volume of noodles. This is NOT a large bowl, but it is a filling bowl of sensible portion size.

I love me some garlic, so I did add a copious amount of the pickled garlic condiment; it didn’t really need it, but as I just said, I love garlic! Broth was well-seasoned with salt and pepper, and I’d have been very satisfied with what had been served had I not been tempted by the big jar of pickled garlic on the table. I also added my poached egg and broth to the bowl, along with the bean sprouts, jalapeños, herbs and lime wedge.

Overall, I was thoroughly satisfied, and I am already making plans to return to try the phở đặc biệt.

Overall Rating: :star2::star2::star2::star2:

Phở Thìn 13 Lò Đúc
10451 Bolsa Ave #101
Westminster CA 92683
(714) 839-1014
8:00am - 9:00pm Daily


Good find. Thanks for the informative review. Have to check it out!

I also had a really good experience here! Delicious stuff, hopefully not too “bland” for those Orange County South Vietnamese palates.


I went back this morning to try the #1 Phở Đặc Biệt, and I again ordered the Chén Hột Gà along with a bowl of Chén Tái. Everything was super tasty, and I was quite happy with the tendon and fatty brisket in the phở. I will say, though, I did not taste as much ginger this time around, which was a slight disappointment.



I always thought that one of the distinguishing features of northern Pho was the use of chicken, as opposed to beef.

So a month later, and the white leather chairs are filthy and stained.

I gotta be honest, I have some hygiene and cleanliness concerns about this place. Other than the chairs becoming so filthy and yellowed, there was a young man in the open area behind the counter and in front of the kitchen who was clearly sick, coughing and sneezing constantly for the hour or so I was dining there – no face mask. After one particularly violent sneeze that left him doubled-over for a few minutes, I did see him amble towards the restroom ostensibly to wash his hands, but much of the time he was coughing and sneezing into his sleeve in between handling clean glasses and filling them with hot tea to be served, among other duties.

He really should not have been working in that condition, and especially not without a mask on!

I also have not needed to visit their restroom, but I’m also a bit apprehensive of doing so.

Forgot to post the picture from the other day…

#1 Phở Đặc Biệt + #10 Chén Hột Gà + #8 Chén Tái, same as last time:

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