Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Nam Phuong

Most second locations of the same restaurant are usually not as good as the original... But there are exceptions. Like this joint which I have been going to routinely since they opened a few years ago. This closer to town location never got much attention but the people in the know know they got a gem here. They are quietly putting out some tasty Viet vittles which is fine by me... We all know what happens when filthy hipsters infiltrate ethnic cuisine and the last thing I want to do is shit all over this beloved joint. The family multi-course dinner menus are some of the best tasting and best value in the entire city... Feeding 8 people for under $100 is fucking sick even though there is enough food for 10 people in that set. One time we got the 6 person $69 menu for 9 people and still took home leftovers, basically $10 per person- fucking ridiculous. Their fish sauce glazed wings are some of the best wings in this city (if not the best)... It would be a damn shame if the pouch doesn't get his fill of them dericious wangz on a regular basis. But on this recent visit, I passed on the wings and got some other tasty vittles for lunch... Take a gander.

Papaya Salad with Beef Jerky. Huge heaping of green papaya in perfectly julienne strips. It's a little dry as is but the sauce they give you on the side more than does the job, if it's not enough there's always fish sauce to squirt on it.

Pan Fried Cubed Rice Cake. This was on the small street food  section.. And it was da bomb. Ultra smooth and soft pan fried rice cakes with wonderfully crisped skin that you can't stop eating one after another. When you get to the semi scrambled egg part of it, the texture contrast becomes heavenly. Fuck, this may be my new favorite street food snack. This and the wings would totally complete me.

Bun Cha Gio. Simple and refreshing bowl of bun and super crispy cha gio. Great spring/summer dish when it's hot out. Don't forget to ask for extra nuoc cham to douse it in.

Bun Bo Hue. Pho has a place in my heart but too many pikers are ruining it for me, it's just not that special anymore. Ok, I won't say no to a great bowl of pho but... Now, this is my jam, yo, my trending dish for Q2 2015... The spicy beef noodle soup. A handful of places have this on their menu along Buford Hwy but not everyone is up to spec on this sick bowl of beef noods when done right. This version was pretty respectable. I asked for extra spicy and it still came out just mildly spicy. There is a shitload of stuff in there, I just wished they had more blood cakes in there. The noodles were spot on, thicker and rounder than the noods used in pho. The pork knuckles with the gelatinous skin is a must have, even though most whities will never gnaw on it. They even got the red cabbage on the side right, along with a little fish paste to add according to your taste. The broth was rich and complex, full of flavor. This was very decent bowl of beef noodle soup even if they didn't make it as spicy as requested.

This place still kicks ass on the food and the prices have pretty much remained the same. Almost anything you get here will be pretty damn tasty. Don't say I never liked anything. But my quest for the perfect bowl of Bun Bo Hue continues...


4051 Buford Hwy
Atlanta, GA
(404) 633-2400

Thursday, April 9, 2015


There's not much else to say about this great 'ZA spot... I lurv it. No words needed, just drink in the glorious picture show below...

Pump pump... Burp.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Le Fat

It's about time this place opened... It's only been like 2 years and Guy is still trying to grow a moustache. Maybe they were hoping that the memories of Yum Bunz  has finally been vanquished from the people's minds. They did a good job on the interior, not one item reminded you of it's former glory hole. It's so fresh and so clean clean. It really does have the 70's Vietnamese style vibe. The servers are in classic black and white garb. The host/manager(s) are suited up which states what kind of establishment this place wants to be perceived. It feels upscale-ish but it's casual and approachable. It wants to be a neighborhood spot but at the same time it wants to stand out with an air of sophistication. I know my one reader is prolly asking themselves what the fuck are you talking about Pouche-bag? Just get to the fucking food because that's all I really care about. As you wish my little buttercup...
The menu contains most of the classic hits found at many of the Viet restos along Buford Hwy, you got your pho, bun, com, noodles, shaking beef, a couple of nods to Chino, Thai and Frog grub as well as a hat tip from Miso. But the most interesting dish I was drooling over was the Bun Bo Hue, this is spicy beef noodle bowl that most people never heard of or done correctly, especially, in this town. I know of one place that does it pretty damn good and I ain't spilling da beans on that spot. I was dead set on this bowl... But to my dismay, he had taken it off the menu. Said it was too much work. Booooooo...shit. C'mon, bro, don't die on me... We're related, I'm sure of it, at least that's what all the whities always say about us. The one dish that I was really excited about and it was 86'd off the menu, I know most people wouldn't even give two shits about this, but this woulda, coulda been his superstar. But instead, not one but two servers were instructed to push the shaking beef over and over again... I had enough fucking shaking beef in this town, stop telling me how great the sizzling beef cubes are, I'm sure they are but I wanted something more "authentic"... Can that be found here? Let's take a ride on a fishing boat and see what's the catch of the day... 

Soft Shell BLT Bun. A lil piece of Miso found here along with their duck bun. Sounded delicious on paper... C'mon, it's soft shell crab in a transportable vessel right to your facehole with no utensils needed. What's not to love? Well, the soft shell crab was crispy and tasty, but the bun was cold and the BLT lacked any oomph, the sambal mayo shoulda given you that kick of flavor but it was pretty muted.

Papaya Salad. Green papaya, apple, mango, crispy shallot, peanut brittle, Thai pepper vinaigrette. There are so many different versions of this salad, it really depends on what area of SE Asia you're in (Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam). They're all a little bit different but since a Thai pepper vinaigrette was used, I assume this was more Thai. If I see papaya salad on any menu, it's gonna be in my dirty mouth. It's a fancier version of the common people's papaya salad. Instead of plain crushed peanuts, they use a peanut brittle. I tasted more green apple than papaya because it was julienne so thin that the flavor got lost in there. I prefer it to be more spicy which this was not and coulda used more fish sauce and dried shrimp was sorely needed but I assume the crispy shallot was an approachable substitution for that crunch factor. I mean, we don't want to scare anybody away with them crazy weird Asian ingredients that still moves in your mouth. It's a refreshing summer salad but it needs a little more kick to the taste buds for me. The prawn chips are cute, cooking them is even more fun... If you never had cook them, get you a box and just toss in the hard translucent little disks into a fryer and it puffs and grows to like 10 times their original size... I wish I could only be that lucky. I love the giant prawn chips that fries up to the size of a dinner plate. Fun fun fun.

Drunken Noodles. I thought I was drunk when this came out... This was a bit too dark for drunken noodles, then it hit me, this was totally beef chowfun! I can't believe he put a Cantonese dish on here disguised as another, I friggin love it. This was not so good as a drunken noodle but for a beef chowfun it was pretty tasty for intown. I still remember the look on Guy's face when he came out and asked how it was, I said, Dude, this is totally beef chowfun... And his stunned face was like, "It is?". Who are you trying to kid here? We both know it's beef chowfun but I swear I won't say a word to the gwai lo's... Ooops, I did it again. It's ok, no one reads this shit anyways. You're all clear. 

Pho. Don't even think about seeing raw slices of meat or internal organs in this pho... But you will find some velvety smooth meatballs and tender thick cut brisket and flank in the bowl. The broth was too light and it needed more complexity and spices, it didn't wow me, but the meatballs were pretty good. I thought they were made in house but they were not. Still a decent bowl of noodle soup intown, but if you're looking for more authentic ingredients like tripe, intestine, blood cake, raw meat, Buford Hwy ain't that far away. 

Wonton Soup. That is the biggest soup spoon I have ever seen. It's like the spoon the three blind Stygian witches used in their cauldron from The Clash of the Titans. The dish that is the most Chinese in here is actually the most authentic. Has nothing to do with Guy's background or anything... I think he's actually an Eskimo, such a big boned, stocky fella, don't forget cuddly and oh so sexy. Did I say that out loud, nevermind. The wontons have the proper ratio of pork and shrimp filling. The wonton skin and filler were cooked spot on, not too soft and not too toothy, just right and pretty good flavor. The clear broth was a little too light, it needed more umami but really no major complaints. Nine bucks for a refreshing bowl of wonton soup is kinda steep but you have to consider your environment. This got me all thinking about the best bowl of wonton noodle soup I had ever had in the entire world... Mak's in Hong Kong, it's pricey at $32HK a bowl but it's really like $4USD. Hell, I remember when it was only $3USD back in the day. That was some deal, you can't beat that with a chopstick. 

I like the place, it has a niche over here on the west side. Something a little different than your standard tacos and burgers found in this area. And a definite upgrade from the previous misconception. It's more Vietnamese/Chinese than Vietnamese/French. The use of quality ingredients shows in the end product even though it has it price... But at least they're cheaper than Gu's Dumps (dreadful). I could see myself coming back here, but not until the Bun Bo Hue is back on the menu and maybe a banh mi appearance(?)... Le Pouch is putting you on notice, Le Fat. Don't fail me again, Chino.

Ok, maybe I'll be back to try that rotisserie half chicken... I can't resist a damn good chicken. I wonder if they would flash fry that chippy for me (it does look flash fried in some recent pics)... If so, that would be sick.

935 Marietta St
Ste A
Atlanta, GA 30318

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Gu's Dumplings

As the wise Yogurt once said, "Merchandising, merchandising, where the real money from the sequel is made. Gu's Dumplings T-shirt, Gu's Dumplings hats, Gu's Dumplings coffee mugs, Gu's Dumplings-the Coloring Book,Gu's Dumplings -the Lunch box, Gu's Dumplings-the Breakfast Cereal, Gu's Dumplings-the Flame Thrower."

This is what happens when FOBs get a ton of attention and constantly get their dick sucked by the non-tribe gentile pedestrians... A nerd that now thinks they're a jock. Did they not see McDreamy in "Can't Buy Me Love"? Donald Miller can mow a mean lawn like a motherfucker but he can't cook Szechuan grub worth a shit. Seems like their purple helmet got too much blood flow from all the praise and decided to try to implant themselves into the cool kids clic. While that is all fine and dandy... We all know how that story will end. But there is hope for the dork to become the cool kid if they stick to their roots... And it doesn't hurt to learn the African Anteater Ritual dance, either. Gu's Bistro cooked like a rockstar and I loved their food because it wasn't dumb down but can the new hipster Gu's Dumplings hold it's own? Judging by the lines, it says yes... Judging by the demographics, fuck no. The whole merchandising is so fucking pathetic cause it makes them look desperate but I still have wet dreams about their bistro grub on a weekly basis. Even though this menu is a fraction of the size of the original, I was still curious to see if the quality is still there. But there is that issue with the new Kung Pao Chicken on the menu, though... George likes his chicken spicy! C'mon, it can't be that bad, could it? ...Let's feed the pouch.

Dan Dan Noodles. If you look at this in the right angle and squint your eyes (unless you're Asian), it almost looks like a skid mark in a pair of underpants. Even the new smoking hot redheaded Wendy's is like, "Where's the motherfuckin' beef, yo?" Nine bucks for some room temp egg noodles and a teaspoon of flavorless meat granulars. Now, I know how Henry Hill felt when he tried to ordered some spaghetti with marinara sauce and he got egg noodles and ketchup...An average nobody like the pouch. Why is there a red pepper next to it on the menu? If this was spicy than I will be a monkey's uncle... Which I'm not. Maybe a nephew or inbred first cousin primate. Just don't watch The Lost Boys while eating this... Only. Noodles. Michael. 

Zhong Style Pork Dumplings. C'mon, the place is name after dumplings, you would think they would excel in this arena. But no, they only have two options, pork or veggie at a dollar a piece, slight discount on full order which is still a rip off. These don't look like their Zhong dumps from before, they look like Panda Express potstickers.. With some reddish tinted juice masquerading as their sweet and spicy sauce squirted on it. Where's the spoonful of garlic that makes this dish? Even the filling of pork was unseasoned and clumpy. I mean there was nothing in that pork mix, just ground pork and nothing else. How can you call your place a dumpling joint when you really only have one type? It's like Baskin Robbins serving only vanilla or chocolate and calling it an ice cream parlor. I am stumped and so are these gluten flaps. This makes me sad.

Chongqing Spicy Chicken. "Very SPICY" my ass. Over fried and dried little min pin turd nuggets with some weak ass dried red chili pepper and the Szechuan peppercorns was basically non-existent. Good luck finding those peppercorns in this small take out bowl, I found 4 and 1 of them was garlic. The spicy heat level was comparable to the Fiery Doritos Locos taco. For $15, this measly little portion didn't even come with rice... That's an extra American Capitalism at its finest dollar, pweez. This was a shameful experiment of when hipsters interfere with Szechaun grub that belongs in the underbelly of Buford Hwy. This dish even shamed my family's honor... And we don't even have any.

Spicy Dried Eggplant. Ok, we can always count on them to deliver the goods on this dish right? Not when being cool hipsters are involved. I remember when these were done right, the inside was cooked through but yet toothy as oppose to mushy innards when deep fried which these were. The uniform batter coating on the outside says it all. If these were wok fried the batter would not be as perfectly fried uniformly all the way around including all the nooks and crannies. I don't know if they didn't have time to execute it correctly since they were in the weeds with a huge line waiting and said fuck it, just deep fry those fuckers, no one will know the difference. Motherfuckers, wrong... The pouch knows the difference. Spicy these were not, more like the heat you find in mozzarella sticks from the marinara sauce. Where the hell is the mind numbing Szechuan peppercorns? It's like a ongoing theme with all the dishes that suppose to have them. Don't fucking die on me, ese... And stop fucking dumbing it down. This $13 disappointment was a swift kick in the nads to all the true fans.

I thought it was a good sign that mom and pop were in the tiny kitchen whipping up the tasty spicy vittles. I expected no less from them to deliver the goods found at their Bistro. But I was wrong. It's no surprise that when you open up a food shack in the ultra trendy hipster KSM, things must change to accommodate the demographics. I don't know if their heart is in the right place or just got bamboozled by fools into opening a food stall way out of their element. You may gain a few new one time customers out of curiosity but you also may have lost the long time supporters on the first bite. Maybe they will get better with time but I doubt it, this model was all planned out way in advance. That's $50 and an hour of my life that I will never get back. The specimens sampled were so underwhelming that there is no need to try anything else, I already know what it will taste like. Wait, is that Chicken and Broccoli on the menu? Yep, they will be a success. One can only hope that Mongolian Beef and Crab Rangoon will be on the menu soon enough. Sigh...

99 Krog Street NE, Suite M
Atlanta, GA 30307

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Penn Station

Why does the pouch keep doing stupid shit over and over again? Like an anonymous commenter once said, "Comments like that speak volumes about your intellect." He was spot on, I am not a smart man but I know what shitty food is. And speaking of which... I present to you these two fine specimens of  hellacious bliss. This sub shop must be the slowest fucking sandwich shop in the world. The first time I came here it took over 30 minutes to make a sub, this visit was a little better at 24 minutes for two cold cut sandos. These fuckers didn't have to cook a thing and it still took the same amount of time it takes me to do my taxes to make two fucking sandwiches. And this place was dead at the time, maybe three customers at best. How is this place gonna stay in business with making four subs per hour? Let's go to the videotape...

Italian. Smoked ham, hard salami, pepperoni, provolone, lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, banana peppers, olive oil & red wine vinegar, salt & pepper, oregano, mayo. First off, what is the deal with the bread here? It's like one of those half baked baguettes you buy at Kroger and finish baking at home. But it looks like they forgot the second part to finish baking at the store. The deli meats are real thin, you can almost slit your wrists with these. The filler is pretty much standard issue, not much flavor but the undercooked bread leaves you with an almost raw flour after taste. The bread is probably the most important thing to a sub, it's the vessel where you transport all the meaty goodness into your facehole... And this was not it. God, I am such an fucking dillweed for coming back here. 

Dagwood. Smoked ham, salami, pepperoni, oven-roasted turkey, slow-roasted, corned beef, provolone, swiss, lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, peppers, pickles, spicy-brown mustard, mayo. I don't fucking play if it's a custom job. This create your own sub gives you the option to put whatever the fuck you want in there. So, I just told them yes to all... This was the crap in the bowl of sandwiches. Too bad this was the end result... The 3 slices of cherry tomatoes should be on the highlight reel. With everything on the menu in this sub, you would think it would be more beastly. I was looking on the menu for a can of Fix-A-Flat because this thing was flatter than a 8 year old girl. I tried to make it look plump for this glamour shot but this bitch wasn't having it. Must be that time of the month. Speaking of which, I had no choice but to go down on this vagwich. This thing was pretty much flavorless even with the meat flaps smacking me on the face with every bite. That weird undercooked bread really killed this.

I really hoped they have changed for the better since the beginning but this sub shop really sucks ass. How can Publix put out a very respectable sub and this place can't is beyond me, they fucking specialize in subs for crying out loud. Shit, come to think of it, Publix does make some kick ass fried chicken and subs. Don't go full retard like me, keep walking past this place if you want your bowels intact.

2566 Briarcliff Rd NE
Suite 102
Atlanta, GA 30329
(404) 500-4294

Tuesday, March 31, 2015


This Indo-Pak mashup joint has been here for what seems like forever. Ok, maybe not forever since I remember eating at the Long Dong Silver's that was there before it. I have been here a handful of times over the years. It's pretty cheap and filling and I enjoyed it mostly from what I remembered... Except for that time it gave me an epic bout of IBS. Well, drinking hard liquor and eating curry isn't exactly what the doctor ordered when you're sick, so it may have been my fault but prolly not. It's been years since I have been back, looks like now is the time for the pouch to make a revisit. I hope they are still using the non-environmentally friendly styrofoam china.
Walked in and bam! The huge pile of styrofoam cups and plates are stacked 10 onions high, almost touching the ceiling. I hope the grub hasn't changed, either... I opted for take out in hopes that they won't be using the styrofoam. Good move, pouch, they used aluminum foil and plastic containers, instead. Class all the way. Let's see how the grub has stood up the past few years...

SAMOSA, chicken. Crispy and small. Minced chicken bits inside had sawdust like consistency, not much flavor. At least it was really crispy.

CHICKEN 65. Boneless chunks of chicken marinated in garlic, ginger and other mild seasonings, then batter fried  and topped with green chilies, cilantro and curry leaves.
Everyone lurvs these little red cheekan nuggets. They are not spicy at all but I kept popping them in my facehole. The jalapeno, err, I mean green chilies were exceptionally mild in flavor. That little sauce bucket was just something there to dip your chicken balls into.

CHARGA. Seasoned half chicken fried in vegetable oil.
Fried? I don't quite think so but at least it was really a whole half cheekan... Well, a really small half pigeon. Charga? I don't think so. It's more of a tandoori chicken based on the vibrant red color from the spices and food dye. A tandoori chicken is not always necessarily red, more of an orange color instead, but most Americans associate the red with tandoori. This fake charga fried chicken was pretty dry and lacked the crackling skin from what I assume has been sitting around for a long bit of time... Like some many specimens of tandoori chicken around town. I have yet to eat a really moist, juicy and flavorful tandoori chicken in this town. This charga was a total let down. I was really excited to get me some real charga but got a bone up my ass instead.

NEHARI (Luqma's Special)?????? Generous portion of boneless beef cooked in a mix of herbs and spices until it is fork tender
This is really what the menu says. I love how they second guess themselves, is it our special or someone else's? We don't know but just to be on the safe side we'll put a bunch of question marks after it. Generous portion is not exactly the word I would use. It's like looking into the toilet bowl in Trainspotting. It was like 2 pieces of meat noodling for catfish in that muddy river water. Good luck finding them in that cesspool. Once found, the meat cubes were fork tender as advertised but the curry needed more herbs and spices... And heat. 

BAGARE BAINGAN????? Eggplant cooked in savory blend of freshly ground spices. 
Is it eggplant or a poblano pepper... That's the fun part of eating this dish or any other in this place. You just don't know what's in your facehole until it's too late. Luckily, this was eggplant and a decent amount of it. This was not spicy at all, even though the oil slick looks otherwise. Come to think of it, this didn't have much flavor at all, it was all oil and mushy texture. If you eat all of this in one sitting, you'll most likely be sitting the rest of the night on the throne. Oil goes in quick but comes out of your system like molasses.

NAAN???????????? Leavened fine flour bread soft and fluffy cooked in clay oven. 
Could have gluten in it or not... Try your luck. If you swell up like Violet Beauregarde, then you will know the answer. The naan was ok, nothing special, had a nice pull and not too chewy. But does it really matter since you'll be sopping up the curry juice with this bread towel... It will do the job. I wish it would also wipe your ass on the way out an hour later.

I don't know, maybe taking this food home was not the desired setting to eat this Indo-Pak cuisine... Maybe it needs to be served on styrofoam plates to bring out the aroma and flavors of the dish... I have heard that closed-cell extruded polystyrene foam does give ethnic foods a certain je ne sais quoi quality to it. The food was just average at best but the saffron basmati rice I made at home was killer. I guess it will be another couple of years before I head back here. Flush.

1706 Church St.
Decatur, GA 30033

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Chow Mei Mei

The pouch was doing some recon in the area and had a hankering to fill it's abyss... It was in the mood for some slutty Asian. Since, Bangkok was a long drive's away, it will have to settle for this. This strip mall is like in limbo, it has a handful of restos and shops but the only real winner here is General Muir. The other places aren't really all that, they're mostly half-breed chains with mediocre food and even worse cocktails. The wannabe fancy pants La Tagliatella didn't last long with their very uneventful food and pricier menu.
Maybe it's just the area, the students aren't exactly your target demographics for higher priced dining establishments. But there are places that do cater more towards the students like the burger joint, Indian joint and now this Asian fusion... Rut roh, there's that word again... Fusion. Every time I hear that word it reminds me of Doc just shoveling garbage into the DMC-12 Mr. Fusion... Time to do the same to the pouch. Will it blender or will it barf... I hope I don't have to go back to the future after eating this. I don't even what that means but it can't be good.

Roti Canai. My sides were hurting from laughing when this came out. I'm like that's the fucking frozen scallion pancakes you get at the Asian markets. Don't get me wrong, they are pretty damn good to make at home but in a resto setting, I may be expecting too much from them. The cold curry was like Aunt Jemima syrup but it's just the Vermont curry block packs found in the Asian market as well. I don't know if they put a bottle of Karo in it but it was incredibly sweet and inedible. Nothing like a little HFCS for your IBS. Also, no bone-in chicken bits was present in the curry which is a must. 

Chicken Coconut Soup. It wasn't horrible but this ain't love at first sight. The assumed chili oil Valdez on top didn't exactly say appetizing. Once you get past that oil leak or mix it in as much as possible, the soup is pretty much what you expect... Very Americanized, sweet and not very flavorful. The chicken slices were bright white and tender at least.

Pad Thai with Tofu. I expected worse. This wasn't half bad... Once you ask for limes to mix in. I guess you really can't expect authenticity in a place like this near a college. For what it's worth, this would be a great hangover food.

Panang Curry with Chicken. Asked for Thai hot... C'mon, y'all know the answer to that. Mild level came out... So, I drowned it in Sriracha. It's not Thai, not even close but it was a decent stir fry with orange sauce. Is that jasmine rice... Stop it, wake up you're dreaming again. At least it was cook to order, somewhat.

General Tso's Cheekan. So, I went for round two and got some take out which begs for the General after a night of boozery... Fat, drunk and stupid is no way to go through life, son. Yeah, I know now... But I can't fix stupid. As you can guess, it's your run of the mill mall food court style slop. Over breaded chicken pieces from Panda Express and pretty weak watery but yet sticky bland sauce coating. At least the veggies were kinda fresh.

Pad See Ew. I don't see ew any flavor to this... It's just some veggies, wide rice noodles all stuck together and chicken with a splash of lite fake soy sauce. C'mon, I could do this at home in a mixing bowl. This was pretty sad overall... Not much to say, just look at the pic. Poor fella.

Fusion is a tough business to be in, not all Asian grub is created equal or can be executed by the same cook... I give the mom and pop props for busting their ass back in the really nice and shiny kitchen but the grub isn't all that compelling to warrant a third visit unless someone gets me really fucking tanked... By then I would probably say yes to a horny St. Bernard in giving me a proper Rogering. I mean, you really have to plan to come this area, like the General Muir is a destination.. This place is more of a "oh, look, a Chino joint, let's stop and get something to go because I'm starving and have no time to sit down and eat" kinda place. I hope they make it with the limited traffic in that area because they are pretty nice people but y'all know how that story will end. Come to think of it, maybe a DeLorean time machine isn't such a bad idea...

1540 Avenue Pl.
Atlanta, GA 30329