Hannah Gabel, Staff Writer
Despite there being numerous restaurant options around the Olympia/Lacey area, there are only a few that are regularly affordable and conveniently placed near Saint Martin’s. One that serves a great comfort food to combat the cold, rainy, Washington winter weather is Pho Vy, a quaint little Vietnamese restaurant that is often overlooked.
Next door to a donut shop, Pho Vy is located in a little store front that deceives the eye. The restaurant has been around for a very long time, owned and run by a small local family. Upon first entering, the restaurant does not look like much, with the occasional leaking ceiling tiles and a somewhat plain style. However, the food is far from disappointing.
Playing a track of various instrumentals, ranging from classical music to instrumental renditions of random songs, the restaurant gives off an almost humorous vibe. The walls have beautiful traditional works of art at each table depicting Vietnamese landscapes, and two TVs at far ends of the restaurant playing various television shows or sports. Usually the restaurant is fairly empty, which allows customers to sit wherever they prefer.
While the overall interior is not especially elegant, the simplicity makes it a great place to visit any time. There are no dress restrictions because of the relaxed style, and with fast, prompt service it makes a great stop to sit down or get takeout.
The Pho Vy is most known for their specialty soups and spring rolls, but offers a variety of other meals. They serve house noodles, stir fry dishes, pork chop dishes, beef stew, and many other traditional Vietnamese dishes as well. All of the dishes are reasonably priced, hardly going above $15, and all of the portions are fairly large.
The staff try to give you a relaxing and positive experience, as well as make sure you get the food that you want and are pleased with it. If you become a regular, they even begin to remember your orders. The cook is skilled in creating the best foods and the staff are friendly and welcoming. The food certainly does not let customers down and is very true and authentic to traditional Vietnamese dishes.
Not only are the meals affordable, but the restaurant is very close to campus, only about a five-minute drive away and also within walking distance. This restaurant is a great stop before or in-between classes because of the convenient distance and affordable food. The service is quick and friendly, and you won’t leave disappointed. The parking can pose a bit of a problem, as the strip mall it is located in has very limited spaces. It is best to pull around behind the restaurant and park in the larger lot they have behind the strip mall area.
This restaurant gives a nice experience that will leave you satisfied and wanting to return in the future. While it does not have the prettiest interior or set up, the food and options will draw you in. Pho Vy has an oddly charming vibe to it with its unique style and theme. “Don’t judge a book by its cover” rings true for this restaurant as, once it is discovered, you will want to continue returning. Pho Vy is located at 909 Sleater-Kinney Rd SE, Lacey, and is open all days of the week from 11 a.m.-8 p.m, its phone number is (360) 438-0195.