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$170 pho bowl served in HCMC’s tallest building

A restaurant inside Landmark 81, HCMC’s tallest building, is serving pho noodle soup that costs VND4 million (US$168) per person with expensive ingredients such as gold leaf, wagyu beef, and truffle mushroom.

Six years ago, a bowl of pho that costs US$100 at Anan Saigon, the first restaurant in Ho Chi Minh City to receive a Michelin star, gained international attention.

$170 pho bowl, HCMC, tallest building, Landmark 81, pho noodle soup, expensive ingredients, Michelin star

A bowl of pho that costs VND4 million (US$168) is combined with expensive ingredients such as gold leaf, wagyu beef, and truffle mushroom at Oriental Pearl Restaurant in Landmark 81 building, downtown HCMC.

At that time, it was the most expensive pho in Vietnam. However, it was overthrown by the new version launched by Oriental Pearl Restaurant on the 66th floor of Landmark 81 building earlier this month.

Chef Le Trung of Oriental Pearl Restaurant said his pho bowl used high-quality ingredients like wagyu beef, gold leaf, foie gras, truffle mushrooms and simmered spare ribs.

Wagyu beef has a rich, buttery taste which makes this meat one of the world's most revered delicacies.

Trung said the beef meat was thinly sliced into a rectangular shape while the truffle mushrooms, originating from Australia, sold at VND45 million per kilogram.

Each bowl of pho uses about 10 grams of thinly sliced truffles.

The highlight of the bowl of pho is gold leaf, which has no nutritional value, and is placed on the side of the bowl.

Trung said that gold leaf was used by many chefs at restaurants around the world to decorate dishes. Finally, the foie gras increases in fat, and the ribs are simmered in the broth.

"During the process of inventing this bowl of pho, my colleagues and culinary director sat down to choose high-quality but delicious ingredients and keep the spirit of Vietnamese pho," said chef Trung.

"The soul of Vietnamese pho in the upgraded version lies in the broth, which plays the role of blending all the flavors of the ingredients."

The chef keeps the traditional way of cooking pho wit bones, oxtail, encrusted ribs and chicken bones, simmering for 48 hours. The chef uses familiar spices including ginger, anise, and cinnamon.

The dish is served with deep-fried dough sticks, herbs, garlic vinegar and chili sauce.

Luu Ngoc Thuy from the Mekong Delta province of Soc Trang said that this was the first time she has enjoyed pho at the restaurant on the 66th floor.

Before visiting, she didn’t know that the $168 bowl of pho had gone viral on social media. Only when she looked at the menu and saw that the restaurant had a new noodle dish with "a lot of interesting ingredients," did she order it.

"The broth is light, bone-sweet and not as fatty as some pho dishes I've enjoyed. I've eaten wagyu beef A5 in Japan and found the quality of beef in this bowl of pho quite similar," Thuy said.

Jaron Guggenheim, culinary manager at the hotel, said the restaurant was initially limited to serve only three bowls per day but now it is serving 10 a day after grabbing media attention.

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Source: VnExpress

$170 pho bowl, HCMC, tallest building, Landmark 81, pho noodle soup, expensive ingredients, Michelin star
 
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