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Make that 8 Courses of Beef

Make that 8 Courses of Beef
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  • Make that 8 Courses of Beef

    Post #1 - July 12th, 2004, 8:44 pm
    Post #1 - July 12th, 2004, 8:44 pm Post #1 - July 12th, 2004, 8:44 pm
    The Condiment Queen is a varied, voracious and especially multi-culti reader. And luckily for me, her reading habits dovetail nicely with my eating habits (which are varied, voracious and multi-culti). When she reads an Indian book, well, its off to da'bomb for us. When it's like now, reading a Vietnamese book, well it was not soon before we made it too Argyle.

    Not only did she have a hankering for Vietnamese, moments after we sat down at Nhu Hoa, our favorite combo Vietnamese-Laotian spot on Argyle, than she surprised me by stating she also had a hankering for the seven course of beef. Am I lucky or what. I'm no expert on 7 course of beef, having only had it once before on Argyle, but of the two, this was my favorite, if nothing else, the portions were bigger. Plus, I was spoiled, by the 8th course of beef.

    I have helped widely disseminate (I think [ed. you hope]) the notion that Nhu Hoa makes the best papaya salad in Chicago. Yesterday's 8th course, papaya salad and beef jerky, exceedingly hot, confirmed my belief. Irregularly hacked papaya, some not fully loose so that they were papaya shards not papaya shreds, way too much fish sauce, way, way too much hot peppers (but Julie of Nhu Hoa loves to reward those who ask for their papaya salad hot) and really way too much food as we had seven more courses to follow.

    Here they are, quickly, in the order they appeared: beef papaya salad, much different from the other papaya salad, tasting maybe a bit too much of perfume from a lavender like herb, the meat as soft as the jerky was hard; ground beef in la lot leaves, thin steak wrapped around pineapple. Both of these dishes are meant to be eaten with tons of accessories, lettuce, daikon, carrots, mint, basil, cilantro, you mix and match so much, no two bites taste quite the same; small meatballs presented in dishes about the size and shape as the condiment bowls at dim sum. Like all Vietnamese meatballs, these were a rubbery, but this delicious broth that bathed them well overcame that. Our favorite course, cubes of tenderloin, grilled (very well, it really picked up the grill flavor) on a bed of lettuce, cucumber and much better than usual tomatoes. Beef fondue, a plate of raw beef, flavored with ginger and a hot pot of onion scented broth. Finally, rice-beef soup, very Iron-Chefy, the way that it was both simple and artistic, the best congee, and actually, perhaps the 2nd best dish of the 7 (but they were all good).

    It's $14.95 and its one of the best deals in town, even if you skip the 8th course.

    Nhu Hoa
    1020 W. Argyle
    Chicago, IL
  • Post #2 - July 13th, 2004, 7:59 am
    Post #2 - July 13th, 2004, 7:59 am Post #2 - July 13th, 2004, 7:59 am
    Great post---one quick question--is that 14.95 for two people, or per person?
  • Post #3 - July 13th, 2004, 9:07 am
    Post #3 - July 13th, 2004, 9:07 am Post #3 - July 13th, 2004, 9:07 am
    since I happened to be reading along,

    I'll post the answer to that for rob -it's 14.95 for 1 person