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Off the Menu

An Un-Pho-Gettable Experience Awaits

By Kyle Galdeira Photos By Lawrence Tabudlo
May 12, 2013

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With great-tasting food and stellar customer service served up at every visit, customers at Pho Mai Han are continually bowled over by the enjoyable experience coupled with flavorful pho and Vietnamese-inspired fare.

Pho Mai Han opened its doors last June in Waipahu’s Westgate Center, and in the months since, diners have enjoyed innovative offerings that fuse cooking techniques and flavor profiles from around the Pacific Rim. Owner and Chef Mai Han blends traditional Vietnamese cuisine with popular local and Asian flavors such as those found in Japanese and Filipino cooking.

“I really like to cook and share my food with other people as well,” Han says. “I always want to find out what people like best.

When customers tell me what they want to see on the menu, I’ll consider adding those items.”

Han first learned to cook at age 10 alongside her mother in Vietnam. The budding entrepreneur moved to Hawaii in 1992 and kept alive the hope of opening her own restaurant while honing her craft as a cook.

Pho Mai Han is known for authentic home-style cooking. She encourages both new customers and those that may not have been to the restaurant to come and try her food, as the menu is continually freshened with new offerings.

Customers rave about Seafood Pho ($7.50 for medium, $8.50 for large and $11.50 for extra large), which includes shrimp, calamari and fish cake. Pho has become famous, especially in the Islands, due to its flavorful broth coupled with a wide array of ingredients such as beef brisket, meat balls, chicken and tofu. Each bowl of piping hot soup also includes a hearty portion of rice noodles along with basil leaves, bean sprouts and green peppers, which diners may add at their discretion.

Prior to reaching for one’s favorite pho dish, Pho Mai Han offers a host of tasty appetizers from which to choose such as Deep Fried Calamari ($7.50) and BBQ Rolls with Pork or Chicken ($6 for two rolls). In addition to Vietnamese sandwich selections, the restaurant also serves up local-style plates including Special Combination Plate ($10) with BBQ Pork Chops, Short Ribs and Spring Rolls and stir-fried selections such as Lemon Grass Tofu ($8.50) over rice.

The clean and inviting sit-down eatery offers a warm, friendly atmosphere for diners. Han can always be found interacting with customers, ensuring that the experience is a memorable one.

“I’m always trying to please my customers so they’ll want to come back again and again,” Han says. “When they come eat, we provide them with excellent service.”

For a limited time, diners can save big on their favorite menu items at Pho Mai Han. From May 15 to 21, customers may purchase $24 worth of menu items including drinks for just $12 via Hot Deals Hawaii. The special offer is valid for one year and applies to dine-in orders only.

Pho Mai Han

Westgate Center
94-366 Pupupani St. Ste. 102, Waipahu
676-1910
Open daily, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.