Miss Chu

· Tuesday February 8, 2011

I'm not averse to Asian soups - in fact, I'd be all over a tom yum right now - but pho has never really done it for me. I tried the place near Hunchbax (which everyone says is 'the one') and, against any shred of common sense, loaded up with coriander for the most authentic taste. Still, I got nothing. Just as I was beginning to feel like I wouldn't last a day in Saigon, word came through of a new beef soup in town - cooked by a woman they call 'The Queen'.

Turns out, Miss Nahji Chu has been winning over locals in Sydney for a couple of years now. Her Vietnamese tuckshop is known for bringing together traditional techniques and contemporary flavours. Apparently her vermicelli salads are so good they prompted Ben Lee to fly his private jet over to Darlinghurst for a sample. Last week Miss Chu expanded her operation, setting up a similar hawker-style eatery on Exhibition Street. The rice paper rolls will probably make your top three (sashimi tuna!) - and if you're after something a little more substantial let me tell you about the pho: It's wonderful, and like all good tuckshops, it's cheap as shit.