Starting out strong helps you seize your own fate, from ordering an early double espresso because you're tired, to running an early flea flicker because you're tired of Joe Theismann being your starting quarterback. Going doubly strong early on, Pho Colonial, whose downtown digs soft-open Wednesday.
The second same-named resto opened this year by Khanh Dao (Voltaire, Steel, Draelion), Colonial's designed by Hatsumi Kuzuu (Urban Taco, Brownstone), who's gone for an efficient-yet-inviting layout balancing a sleek counter-order station against a hanging-plant-laden, French-style patio designed for idling, which is also French style. To ensure quality and consistency, all sauces are cooked at the Frankford Rd forerunner and rushed downtown daily for use on everything from starters (sliced lime beef tenderloin topped w/ rice patty, peanuts, fried onions; fried chicken wings w/ sauteed jalapenos) to this-location-only Banh Mi loaded with lemongrass chicken, beef tenderloin, or poached bbq pork, plus jalapenos, cucumber, cilantro, and pickled carrots, all on 10" baguettes baked far softer than Lex Steele. Further stuff yourself with Bun (the aforementioned meats, veggies & spices over noodles), Phos (from chix/jalapeno/basil to the more daring Dac Biet w/ brisket, rare beef tenderloin, tendons, tripe, meatballs), and specialties like fried-then-wok-finished sea-salt shrimp or sesame chicken breast, clearly the best breast on Sesame since Katy Perry.
Bevvies include bubble teas, Vietnamese chicory coffee, domestic & imported beers, wines, and sakes, all of which (along with the food) are also available via a walk-up takeout window, or delivery on their flashy fleet of pink scooters, presumably in a Giant sack.