Back in college, we worked at a Mexican restaurant that served menudo, a tripe stew. It didn’t get ordered often, but when it did, cries of dismay would arise from the staff due to the soup’s feral, funky aromas filling the kitchen. So, despite being an adventurous eater and despite the endorsements from chefs like Anthony Bourdain, we never gave tripe or other offal a real shot. That all changed on our first visit to Pho Lucky, which specializes in Vietnam’s national dish. Hesitant diners can order their pho with just thinly sliced beef, but the real deal is the pho dac biet, with sliced beef, meatballs, tripe and tendon. In the interest of journalism, we ordered it, and were blown away. Not only was the soup not funky, but we loved the tripe’s unique, delicate texture. We’re not sure how soon you’ll find us ordering menudo, but we’ll go for another giant bowl of pho dac biet any day.
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