Is Madame’s Delicious Pho a Real Vietnamese Restaurant in LA?

Image Credit: Hopper Stone/HBO

Even after the war has been lost, the revolution continues for the General in HBO’s ‘The Sympathizer.’ The fifth episode of the show presents his plans to revive the fight and take it back to Vietnam, where they can try to upend the new regime and go back home. However, kickstarting a revolution requires money, and the General knows that pretty well. This is why he and his family start various businesses through which they aim to get as much money as possible to fund the revolution. His wife’s new restaurant, Madame’s Delicious Pho Restaurant, also falls under this plan. While a lot of things in ‘The Sympathizer’ remain fictional, things like these make one wonder if someone could have really used a restaurant as a front to help the revolution. SPOILERS AHEAD

Madame’s Delicious Pho is a Fictional Restaurant

The restaurant shown in ‘The Sympathizer’ through which the General wishes to jump back into the fight is a fictional creation. There is a real Vietnamese restaurant called Madam Pho in Newington, Rhodes, and Westfield Hurstville, but it is not connected to the one in the show, which has a lot more going on behind the scenes than what appears at first glance. A set in LA was created to film the several scenes taking place within the restaurant.

Image Credits: Hopper Stone/HBO

To a person not aware of the General’s real plans, like the Captain, at first, it seems like the man is expanding his businesses, but soon, his ulterior motives become much clearer. It is not surprising to see the General trying to restart the revolution, as he had made his intentions clear pretty early on. His liquor store was also a means to that end. While its main purpose was to provide for his family, the General didn’t see it as succumbing to his new life but used it as a way to stabilize himself to further his plans.

Despite seeming far-fetched, the General’s plan actually seems to be working towards that end because, following the success of his liquor store, he has put the money into another business that is entirely centered on the revolution. The restaurant, which is under his wife’s name, is intended to send all its proceeds to the revolution, and it isn’t simply the money that they make from the business. The restaurant also becomes a way for their people to donate money to the cause without arousing suspicion, as that money can be written off as the restaurant’s profits.

The ingenuity of using a business as a front isn’t anything new, as even during the war, several businesses had been acting as fronts to support the other side in enemy territory. A small restaurant called Pho Binh was an inconspicuous business in Saigon that helped the Viet Cong during the war. Madame’s Delicious Pho in ‘The Sympathizer’ is reminiscent of that and pushes the characters in a direction from which there is no coming back.

Read More: The Sympathizer: Where is the Show Filmed?