One of my favorite (and cheap) places to eat, hands down. 777 Noodle House on University Avenue.
This place serves Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai and Cambodian food. You'd think it'd be "fusion," but it's far from. Fusion makes you think the place is trying to cater to a wider customer base and therefore serves all different cuisines, compromising the quality of all them. Like, if the name of a place includes the words Thai and Pizza, it wouldn't be wrong to approach with caution. Not the case here though. 777 Noodle House is L to the E-G-I-T.
Also, the people are the sweetest. Come a couple times, and you'll see what I mean. It's like going to a nail salon. The folks start recognizing you, remembering the people you bring and asking, "Why I don't see you in long time?" "Why you keep bringing different man?" Because I'm a reporter who works with different photographers. They're on a rotating schedule, okay? Please believe me.
Still, I love it. And, I love this. #2 on the menu.
The waitress told me it's a popular Cambodian dish. It definitely has the basic make up of Southeast Asian cuisine. Rice noodles, protein, fresh vegetables and delicious bone broth. And I mean BONE broth. One sip and you know no ramen packets were involved. Making this soup involved slow boiling pork bones for hours until the bones soften and the meat melts away like butter.
This is how good this dish is. The very bones that make the soup are so delicious the cooks go on ahead and throw part of that bone into your bowl!
It may be off-putting to a few folks, but that bone meat will be some of the best meat you've ever eaten. Buttery, light, soft...so good.
In fact, in my experience, many Asian people prefer meat still on the bones because typically it's a lot tenderer and more flavorful. #SayNayToFillet.
I would be remiss if I didn't mention the hot chili oil sauce here. They make it themselves. It's so good that months ago I asked to buy some, and for $5 they gave me about a half pint. The picture doesn't do it justice, but here's what to look for...
It doesn't look like much, but the flavor and spice will knock you out of your socks. If it wouldn't destroy my insides, I'd fill a trough with this stuff and dunk everything I eat in it before consumption.
So, if my message hasn't been clear, here it is in my best Candice cavewoman voice," 777 Noodle House...Good. Go. Eat. Now!"