This entry refers to a departed business that has closed or left town. All information here is for historical reference only.


Was replaced by Enju

How Hoa Viet used to look

305 First Street
(at First & B Street
around the corner from Delta of Venus)
Mon-Sat 11am-10pm
Sun 9am-10pm
Off-wiki menu

Hoa Viet is one of three Vietnamese restaurants in Davis (the other two are Sunrise Restaurant and Pho King IV). The restaurant is basically right next to campus and across the street from the Aggie Inn hotel.

The pho is pretty good although the broth is a bit oniony. The spring rolls aren't that great. Still, if pho is what you came for, then you should be pretty satisfied. The price for a large bowl is about $6, which is a good deal considering the serving sizes are ginormous. Good place for some dinner with a friend. Also, the #52 (with chicken, beef, or shrimp) is a delicious, very filling noodle dish. The chicken one comes with lots of char-broiled chicken, two egg rolls, and a few shrimp. The pork spareribs are sub-par, unless you like gnawing rubbery flesh off of a rotting bone.

If you are going to eat pho, try the wide noodles (chow fun noodles) in place of the regular. It costs a dollar more, but it is well worth it. Very Very delicious.

Hoa Viet changed ownership in mid 2006 and underwent renovation at that time, including reconfiguring the space in the back. One of their wait staff said on 2006-06-02 that the new owner had made changes to make sure the place was cleaner, including renovating the bathrooms. The new owner is hands on, and actually buses table. The pho on that night tasted as excellent as usual, so the food probably was not significantly changed.

The restaurant originally opened around the year 2000.

As many of the comments below note, they do have a history of cleanliness problems. You can look at the Yolo County health reports. It's a very poor record, probably exceeded only by Delta of Venus.

  Warning: Towing is aggressively enforced at this location!  

The lot owned by Hoa Viet is by far the easiest lot to get towed from in all of Davis (as can be seen by multiple comments on this page). Only park here while you are eating at this restaurant. If you park here, eat and then proceed to walk around downtown/campus for a few minutes you will likely get towed. You will also get towed if you park here while they are closed, or park here and walk around town before you plan on eating at this restaurant. Basically if your car is in this lot your body better be in the restaurant at all times, no exceptions. Some have even alleged that Hoa Viet towed their car accidentally while they were in fact inside the restaurant.

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Older Reviews

Current Reviews

2007-02-26 00:47:54   Eh, I just like pho, I wish there were a better place in town, tis a shame for pho is so nice on a cold day. It is a bit better than CoHo Pho, but not by much, dunno if it is worth the price, the service could be better, food could be better but eh, lacking options and having a want of delicious warm Pho. They also lack decent bike racks nearby, or at least I didn't find any. ~DavePoole

2007-03-06 21:33:04   The food is not very good. So much MSG in the food —MikeWong

2007-04-08 03:56:59   I agree with JulieEickhof about the place going downhill in the end of summer. It used to be one of my boyfriend-at-the-time and my favorite asian restaurants, and i was so pissed when i ordered take-out one day and everything i usually ordered was different! grrr, never went back there. —Lisa

2007-04-15 09:42:32   It's alright for a quick fix (close to campus, one of the few pho places in Davis) but honestly, the food here is pretty bad.

Coming from East Side San Jose, i have very high standards when it comes to Vietnamese food. lol —DonaldJaye

2007-05-04 13:48:58   I've been here three times and they were ALL BAD! Vegetarian fried rice was way too salty. I went here early on a Saturday morning and ordered mixed vegetables and rice(Mixed vegetables are about the only thing that's vegetarian here). The rice was TERRIBLE! You can totally tell it was leftover microwaved rice they didn't want to waste from yesterday. For goodness the old rice to make fried rice. I barely wanted to eat it because it was half hard and half cold. The vegetables didn't look and taste very fresh either. This place needs to step it up and for a Viet vegetarian options?!-VT —VivianTang86

2007-05-04 13:49:14   staff is not that friendly either-VT —VivianTang86

2007-05-24 00:08:36   rude staff, they get pissed off if you split a bill, and i havent noticed a renovated restroom. however, the only really polite people are the blonde dyed waitress and the tall azn dude with shaved sides. the pho is good just cuz its pho, but there is inconsistencies with its quality. i came here at 9PM and the broth was very cloudy, while another time it was very clear. —wesleywang

2007-05-25 19:16:39   Rocking good pho! Consistently great, inexpensive and delicious! I would totally recommend this place to anyone! #12 rocks! —domesticgoddesss

2007-06-27 16:16:37   Went there today. It was nothing special. I do want to comment on the fact that they charged me $0.25 to-go fee. I've never been to a place that charges me a to-go fee. But it was only a quarter, I just don't like the fact that the guy gave me the check and once I gave him my card, he quickly used his hand to cover the check. I asked him and he just smiled and nodded. —Jackie

2007-08-03 12:03:51   that viet lady pissed me off + cracked me up last night. Me + my gf went there, we ordered our PHO with NO onions. When it came, there was Onion and NO i'm all like , we asked for no onion, and we now get only and she paused for a second and say, can you pick them out? I'm like.......ugh....watever so conclusion is, she doesn't speak english or she can't write the word "onion" and also, when i ask for no onion, i mean so i don't have to pick them out myself you dimwit.... Even if the Old tea house screws up on the no beansprouts request sometimes, they at least have the courtesy to remake it for you, rather than to ask you to "take them out" yourself...horrible —JamesLi

2007-09-23 13:12:36   THE WORST place I've ever eaten Vietnamese food in my LIFE! Extremely bland and not even close to appetizing. Several of my friends found ROACHES in their food. Other friends of mine who used to work for them quit because of the practices they knew took place at this restaurant. STAY FAR AWAY! —UnhappyStudent

2007-09-26 11:23:58   Pretty much nothing here is vegetarian. Even the mixed vegetables are cooked in oyster sauce. I ended up settling for deep-fried tofu and steamed rice. —CalamityJanie

2007-10-06 06:46:54   This place is kind of dirty and service is bad, but I usually order my food to go. The only thing I get here is the salt and pepper squid (calamari) and an order of white rice to go with it, really good. It's a bit greasy, but good every once in awhile! —AmyLee

2007-10-06 11:45:49   not so friendly service and I have had way better vietnamese food. —AlexJohnson

2007-10-12 23:17:09   barely ok Pho. barely. The chicken was on the border of being too hard and dry to be edible. The noodles clumped. The flavored was not Pho flavor, it was just chicken stock. —ingrid

2007-10-12 23:31:47   You should check out their health inspection report. It may be an interesting to see. —JohnWong

2007-10-13 01:19:22   it's alright. just mediocre. and this comes from someone who used to eat around bolsa/westminister/garden grove area. Service was disappointing. —KaiWan

2008-01-01 10:25:38   the service there is horrible, but there are no other real pho places in Davis... I wish there was... otherwise I would live @ the other restaurant! —SmartenU

2008-01-08 11:15:46   pho doesn't compare to other places, but their egg rolls are great. and they charge for extra lime -_- —BryanYoung

2008-01-22 14:45:21   this place is generic. Not my favorite place in Davis. I've been to better places than this one. THis place has pho that is ok. However, they have birds/bats living inside where the sign is located outside on the building. Plus, they are cheap. they never give me enough napkins or fish sauce. I'll only come here if I am craving for pho. However, their chow fun pork is great. :D —ChiYang

2008-03-01 09:52:34   fcking b*tch at the counter gave me attitude when i told her i wasn't going there anymore because they towed my car. i had every intention of eating there after doing something on campus, but they said i was taking up space during their dinner rush (there were at least 3 empty spots when i got there!). she tried to trick me into thinking she could waive the fee, yeah right. the tow guy told me they tow a car from that place every day around lunch time. lesson learned: don't park there, don't eat there. pho wasn't that great either. —delusionvision

2008-03-01 11:55:44   Yes i agree. They are the most agressive place when it comes to towing your vehicle. I was towed at 10:45am, well before they were even open. I still think i was in the wrong for parking there, but 90% of the spots were empty and I also intended to eat there during lunch, right when they opened. —MattHh

2008-03-12 08:39:58   Have you noticed the mass amount of rat droppings piled up against the outside, exterior walls? —MaraDog

2008-06-20 17:51:49   Um, the bbq pork with rice is AMAZING. That is all. —joeistheish

2008-06-20 17:55:41   Oh - I have to add.. I have much love for my friends that are from other countries, but LORD JESUS if you're in customer service, please know how to speak English. I asked the server a question about a dish and the poor guy didn't know enough English to explain it (it was just to tell me how it was cooked). I ordered it and it came with shredded pork. After I got it, I found out (via trying it) that the shredded pork that comes as a side is EFFING DISGUSTING AS HELL. So don't order that. LOL —joeistheish

2008-07-20 16:00:34   I've gone several times in 2008 and the food's always great. I always pick some random non-pho thing off the menu, getting more and more exotic as I have more good experiences there. Last time my entree consisted of like 5 different unidentifiable things, including a 'shrimp paste cake' and it was *still* delicious. And I'm addicted to their fish sauce, do yourself a favor and try it over plain rice. —davisGeek

2008-07-22 17:45:28   I've had some good Pho before, and coming from the Bay Area, there are a few awesome Pho restaurants. Hoa Viet, though, doesn't stack up with them. I;ve been there about three times now, trying their pho twice and a rice plate once, and neither of the times was super satisfying. First off, the veggies that they give (basil, bean sprouts, lime, jalapeno) are not very fresh, especially the bean sprouts. They came wilted and a bit brown, each time I've been there. The noodles are hard and very stuck together, and requirew a lot of stirring to loosen up, o you know that they've been sitting there for awhile. The soup is on the salty end, but not flavorful. If there was a different place to get pho in Davis, I would give it a try for sure, but unfortunately there are no other options besides Hoa Viet. —Scentiment

2008-07-28 18:41:58   This place has some of the worst service in davis! I went there last night for a bowl of soup with two friends and sat down when there was only one other person in the whole resturant. 45 minutes later we still did not have our food and the whole place was completely packed. After nearly an hour we were notified that there was no more duck and only two of the three of us could get our meals. It does not take over an hour for the small bowls of pho we ordered! we were completely forgotten about and then served too in haste without all of the food we ordered. We were not offered any compensation for our food being late and them not telling us they did not have our all food until they were serving us. Our drinks came after we had finished our food and packed up to leave but we were still charged for them. I love pho and am very disappointed that 1) the food is not that great and 2) the service is completely horrible. Save your money for a pho place in the bay area— you will get fresher food and way better service. *** we came 20 minutes before the dinner crowd came, it was not because they were busy that the service was lacking. —whatithink

2008-08-04 23:09:43   so i just ate there and there was a dead fly in my friends soup...not very sanitary or appetizing knowing that the soup is prolly made in a big pot so i ate the fly soup too.....check the health insection not reccomend this place —islandboy12

2008-08-05 15:45:59   I came to this place last week and I ordered a fried rice. It was not bad at all, and today I came back to ordered another fried rice. It was just terrible, to much MSG, too salty, and oily. I never seen a fried rice like that in my life before. My hubby just hated it, because it looked disgusting. If you guys want to try their fried rice, i don't recomended theirs because you will waste your money. We are so dissaponted!!! —JK

2008-09-06 15:50:19   I'm used to pho from little saigon in the westminster/garden grove area, and comapared to that, this is not good. however, it is better then the other pho place in town, and this is where i go when i really want a pho fix. at leat it has the right ingredients and comes with all of the veggies. herbs it is supposed to have. i really do miss pho bolsa and song long, though. —ascapoccia

2008-09-18 15:47:36   I dont even have high standards for vietnamese food and the pho here is terrible.


2008-10-13 16:56:24   watch out for the short male waiter with the hair split down the middle!! he forgot to give me a water so i asked him for one and he said ok and it never came, which is fine because he probably forgot. so i reminded him and he looked annoyed and went back into the kitchen and the water still never came. so i reminded him again and he just looked annoyed and still didnt give me a water!! on PURPOSE! what crawled up his ass and died, i do not know. maybe the water i was looking for. and now he just glares at me whenever i go there. wtf? —AndrewFoot

2008-11-03 00:31:36   The first time I went here, I got food poisoning. From the seafood or the MSG? The world may never know. The second time I went with a group of nine, and we sat and watched as a group of ten came in and were seated before us. Who cares that we were white? We paid for the food, right? —HannahReff

2008-11-27 00:33:00   The only reason Hoa Viet gets any business is because of its close location to campus. I prefer Sunrise Restaurant, they're nicer and service is much better. Hoa Viet has the best pho in Davis because it's the ONLY RESTAURANT THAT SERVES PHO, so that's not saying much. It was funny because I had asked for a bowl OF soup to go with my rice entree, and the lady came out with an empty soup bowl. Again, I told her, "no, I want some soup in the bowl." She then didn't know I was fluent in Vietnamese, complained about me to the other guy waiter in Vietnamese and he finally gave me my bowl of soup I asked for, which is basically pho broth with some cilantro in it. I only eat here now when i HAVE to such as a friend wanting to eat there or something. —vietgirlwithappetite

2008-12-05 19:16:50   The food here is alright. In their menu, they make the food look very delicious and a lot. However, after you receive it, it is not as much. They are so cheap in napkins and soup. Also I think some of the food should be that price when they are not giving a lot. The service is not that good. The little Asian Man who wears white T-shirt and the split in the middle of his hair is lazy and doesn't do much. When I ask him to do my check for me, he told the other guy to do it even when he doesn't seem to be BZ. The tall viet guy with a black T-shirt guy is much nicer. P.S. Dont park your car there unless you are planning to eat there. They are very strict about parking. Like today I went there, that short Asian man went around table and ask who the Honda Car it is. Right after he fine out it does not belong to anyone. He imediately call in the towing without being considerate. There was so much space at that time and no one was eating there yet. —Halo

2009-02-07 23:45:15   we find the food here pretty good. The waiters are kind of surly, but other than that they do their jobs right. —Xenophon

2009-02-09 17:17:33   i've been going here for a while now not because of their great food or service but because i don't have any other options. don't think i will continue going though from my last experience. my waiter got every one of our orders wrong. he didn't know what spring rolls were and brought out sprite and when we told him we asked for spring rolls he just brought out more sprite. he had no idea what i was asking for when i ordered thai tea, and didn't know what i meant by a large number 12. when i finally got the pho...well... i found a piece of plastic in my pho and told the the guy at the register when i went up to pay and he gave me this "what do you want me to do about it?" look and charged me for my meal anyway. horrible. —Yesenia

2009-02-09 18:18:08   /\ why do i have a feeling you're a little bitter over a small incident that might have occurred so you're trying to blow this spot up by posting a really negative comment? if there was plastic in your soup, why would you only mention it once your meal was done? hmm... —BettyBean

2009-02-10 19:29:43   Too much msg. —vlam

That is for damn sure, but they do have pho in Davis cornered, even though sac will always be infinitely better —StevenDaubert

2009-02-11 15:32:22   bettybean, do you think i continued to eat my pho after i found a piece of plastic in it? since no one comes around to check on how you're doing and since you have to pay up front, that is how i ended up at the register. —Yesenia

2009-03-03 23:55:28   The foods are not that bad. It depends on what you order. But there are also negativity: 1) Do not order anything that have seafood cuz the sea-foods are disgusting, especially shrimp. They are undercooked and tasted nasty. 2) Do not order to go unless you have no choice cuz they will charge you extra money without even tell you. 3) Do not park there without eating inside the restaurants f you dont want ur vehicles to be towed. 4) Do not order ur food during rush cuz it takes forever for them to make it. ( The longest time I have to wait was 45min) 5) The ladies are so impolite. BADDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD Customers Services ever. 6) The price was way more expensive compared to the quantity and the quality of the food you ordered. 7) The water and table are nasty. So please clean all the utensils before u even think of using them. Overall, dont go there unless you are really want to have some foods that close to the campus. —IanChau

2009-04-24 17:14:47   Their prices have gone up and their portions are smaller. I went there the other day and they charged me 0.25 per item for take out. Crazy!! Don't eat there!! And they charge gratitude if you have more than three people. And they have poor services. They're rude and take forever!! I've vow never to go to Hoa Viet in Davis ever again. —liaface

2009-05-04 16:35:27   The food was okay, but the customer service is really bad, they probably need to replace the whole entire staffs who are working there. —thtly

2009-08-11 22:57:23   Service is mediocre, I only go there to eat Pho. The Pho is decent, it's not the best (compared to San Francisco, or Los Angeles), but it certainly isn't bad. I have always received my food quickly, so I have no complaints about speed. —IdealParadigm

2009-12-01 01:40:14   Judging from the recent reviews, it appears that most customers either (1) have really bad luck when dining out or (2) are demanding something above and beyond what this place has to offer.

I've rarely have had bad experiences at this restaurant. In fact, I had a good experience earlier tonight.

I got off work at 9:00 PM and called the restaurant to check if they were still open. They said that they closed at 10:00 PM, but orders after 9:30 PM were take-out only. I asked if it would be alright for me (a party of one) to dine-in if I could arrive in the next 10 minutes. They had no problem with that.

I arrived at 9:10 PM, placed my order while sitting down — $8.75 for a bowl of vermicelli rice noodles with egg rolls, grilled shrimp, grilled pork and steamed pork-shrimp sausage/cake. I received a glass of water and a small pot of hot tea shortly thereafter, and my order came out in short order at 9:18 PM. The food was delicious: the egg rolls were toasty hot with thin, flaky shells; the grilled meat was succulent and aromatic; and the skewered shrimp were seasoned and grilled just right (not too tough or dry). I even received and extra bowl of chili-fish-sauce (which was very nice of them).

Though I was really hungry, I ended up only being able to eat about 75% of my meal (it was a huge serving in a huge bowl). At 9:45 PM, I took the rest to-go and paid the bill — $10.00 even for food, tax & tip.

Overall, the food service was fast, the waitstaff were friendly and the cashier was pleasant when I asked for a take-out box and a bag. I was totally satisfied. —T.Zukumori

2010-01-09 02:44:04   I got the Chicken Soup and it was awful! Not fresh at all. The restaurant was very cold too! Definitely not a recommended place to eat in town. —james3434

2010-01-31 20:38:50   at first i hated this place because i'm originally from san jose and thought it didn't compare. but the longer i've stayed here, the more accustomed i've grown to it. it's a good place to go when you're craving pho. it satisfies your craving. i would not recommend the nam nung here. i don't think the service here is bad. they do their job (they're just not in your face smiley and talkative which i'm totally fine with). —SaThai

2010-06-02 13:49:01   I think service is fine. :P The pho doesn't compare to Sac or San Jose, but at least there is one Pho place in Davis. :P —PaulV

2010-06-04 11:20:29   My wife and I went there with a friend the other day for lunch. I got orange chicken which was AMAZINGLY GOOD and my wife got pho which she wasn't enormously impressed with (I don't know what kind, though). Service was mediocre at best. Still, that orange chicken was so good I might have to go back at some point. :) —RobertM525

2010-07-16 17:14:37   I love the food here but it is indeed a dirty place. Outside there are bat droppings, and often cigarette butts, and soda cans. —JasperD

2011-01-15 13:23:32   I have gone here many times over the past 2 years, and my experiences have been variable. Sometimes the service is so slow, especially to get the bill. The most recent time I went, I found a long dark black hair in my pho (I have blonde hair). After showing it the waiter and getting a new bowl, the service to my table increased dramatically. Haven't tried any other pho restaurants, but I'm sure there are a lot better places out there than this one. —argyle

2011-03-27 22:18:31   This is the only Pho places that I've gone to ever since I've moved to Davis and this is only because there are no other good pho places around town. The pho is only considered ok. Having eaten plenty of pho in the LA/SD area, the broth at Hoa Viet just isn't flavorful and we all know the broth is what makes great pho. Oh well, I can't complain when there are no other good alternatives to turn to unless you travel far. —C.Ling

2011-04-23 11:42:15   I like the Pho here and the service is fine in my experience—but the atmosphere is dreadful. This is a great location, right near campus and they could be doing so much more with this place. Why don't they fix up the front patio? A bit of remodeling and decor and this place could draw in a lot more customers. —BrentKago

2011-06-17 16:47:13   Definitely a good Vietnamese restaurant. The Pho is decent, and other dishes (like Cha) are pretty good - very welcome if you appreciate Vietnamese food. Living nearby, I come here frequently. The atmosphere is relaxed. Too many reviewers are uptight here, eager to show the sharpness of their critical side. I enjoy Hoa Viet very much. —LauraKelly

2011-08-16 16:10:19   I actually like the pho they have here (although pho from the bay and central valley taste better in my opinion), especially compared to the CoHo pho. I've had a few problems with the customer service (no one took our orders for 15-20 minutes even when it wasn't busy), but other than that, most of my dining experiences have been pleasant. I like this place more than Sunrise. —PaulV

2011-10-19 17:38:31   Although the service was a bit slow, they were very tolerant and accommodating of the kids at our table. That could be a good thing or a bad thing depending on your dining needs. —NoelBruening

2011-10-23 20:43:12   The food here is tasty, and affordable. Sometimes it's the default to-go place for my boyfriend and I, because it's really the only place in Davis with decent pho (Red88 doesn't count lol). The food is good, not amazing, but quickly prepared, and pretty consistent. However, I always order the cold noodles with the fish sauce (I forgot what it's called), but it always comes out either roomtemp or slightly lukewarm, which is sort of disappointing to me because it's not what it's supposed to be. They probably just take the regular noodles and run it under some cold water. :/ And it is a little janky inside; the decor needs work and atmosphere leaves something to be desired. But all in all, tasty food, and you get your money's worth. —susiebear

2011-10-30 23:59:20   Love the food; always have, but parking has always been a bitch! —AshleyHamidi

2011-12-16 16:47:25   food not bad, good for a quick soup fix. —JeffA

2012-02-14 14:55:01   Food here is good. The price is affordable. Its close enough to the real Pho that you get from the Bay Area. The atmosphere needs a little work. #50 with pork is delicious. —BingL

2012-03-14 02:57:22   With the opening of Pho King IV today and my need to distract myself from the two dreadful papers that I have yet to write, I decided that Pho Bac Hoa Viet would be the first place I review here on DavisWiki. Coincidentally, this is also the first restaurant I have ever eaten at when I moved to Davis for school. Initially, I hated this place. Coming from the Bay, I have always been blessed with great pho so this joint was definitely a disappointment. I hated it so much that I refused to go here for the whole first two years of college. But as year 3 rolled around, I gave them another chance (unwillingly, at first). All you Thirsty Thursday and weekend party folks know what I mean. I started to come here on a weekly basis (Fridays, lol) during the summer. Eventually, I fell in love with this place, as it has saved me from many hangover-Fridays (and some weekends).

Needless to say, this is one of the very few restaurants in Davis that I actually crave to go to. I even prefer it over pho places in Sacramento. But i'll give Pho King IV a try soon and see if they steal my heart from Hoa Viet :) —reeeeeow

2012-05-13 00:08:56   I gave this place so many chances throughout the past two years that I've moved into Davis, but each visit seems to get worse. Service is pretty slow, and the waiters are somewhat rude. I don't know about you, but the young female waiter seems to like she doesn't really care about you and is pretty rude.

The food is not that great either. I believe the only people that really like this place are people who haven't tasted the best of Viet food. I drive down to sac to taste REAL Vietnamese food like Saigon Bay, and they're REALLY good. The only reason why people come here is because it's the closest Pho place in town, but you'll regret going here after realizing the poor quality customer service and disgusting food. Take the drive and please your stomach with real Viet food in Sac. You won't regret it. —JaceWinter

2012-06-21 23:52:54   Their pho portions have gotten a lot smaller. A small bowl used to fill me up but now they don't give you enough noodles and you're walking out feeling cheated. I have to get a medium or large to actually feel full. Also, I can tell they don't use real broth in their pho (real broth is suppose to be boiled from meat bones to get that meaty nice flavor) but now their pho broth tastes like they just dumped a bunch of powder in it mixed with water and I can tell because after eating pho here a couple of times, my stomach has that heavy feeling, not full, and I have some stomach pains which never happened before! Will not be coming here again. Their food is Americanized and becoming too expensive for their tiny portions. —Jujubean

2012-10-22 16:02:06   I had heard some-not-very-good things about this restaurant and so avoided it. However, academics tend to get dragged to restaurants not of their own choosing, so it was only a matter of time. Well, it doesn't seem as though I was missing anything. I had a lemongrass dish and it was extremely greasy without much lemongrass flavor, plus the meat was of a poor quality. The lemongrass dishes at Sunrise Restaurant are much, much better. I guess the next time I am dragged here, which hopefully won't be anytime soon, I will try some pho, and perhaps that will be better. —CovertProfessor

2013-08-25 10:30:11   What?!? It closed? But we ate there every week, and it always seemed to do good business. Why? Say it ain't so! —Chamoudah