Than Brothers (Ballard)

2021 NW Market St
Seattle, Washington 98103
(206) 782-5715

Categories: Restaurant

Restaurant Details

  • Diner-style Than Brothers is devoted to pho and pho alone, and they have it down to a science—it's cheap, hot, and reportedly good at each and every one of the dozen-plus locations in the Seattle area. Plus: free cream puffs for dessert!
  • Features: Cheap Eats and To Go
  • Cuisine: Vietnamese
  • Price Range: $

The Stranger's Reviews of Than Brothers

Other Locations

Green star Than Brothers

527 Broadway E
Seattle, WA, 98102 (Capitol Hill)
(206) 568-7218

Green star Than Brothers

7714 Aurora Ave N
Seattle, WA, 98103 (North Seattle)
(206) 527-5973

Green star Than Brothers

4207 University Way NE
Seattle, WA, 98105 (University District)
(206) 633-1735

Green star Than Brothers

22618 Highway 99 Ste 101
Edmonds, WA, 98206 (Out of Town)
(425) 744-0212

Green star Than Brothers

7844 Leary Way NE
Redmond, WA, 98052 (Eastside)
(425) 881-3299

Green star Than Brothers

10435 Pacific Ave S
Tacoma, WA, 98444 (Out of Town)
(253) 548-8886

Green star Than Brothers

4822 California Ave SW
Seattle, WA, 98116 (West Seattle)
(206) 937-6264

Green star Than Brothers

8515 S Tacoma Way
Lakewood, WA, 98499 (Out of Town)
(253) 582-5120

Green star Than Brothers

500 SE Everett Mall Way
Everett, WA, 98028 (Out of Town)
(425) 353-8906

Green star Than Brothers

1299 156th Ave NE Ste 133
Bellevue, WA, 98007 (Eastside)

Green star Than Brothers

8 W Mercer St
Seattle, WA, 98199 (Queen Anne)
(206) 327-9699

Daily 11 am-9 pm

Average Rating:
  • 3.50000/5 Stars.
Reviews/Comments (15) RSS

Newest First Unregistered On Registered On Add a review of Than Brothers
15 Comment Pulled

hate this place

I absolutly despise this place this is coming from Someone who knows PHO. SPEND YOUR MONEY ELSEWHERE LIKE FIVE SEASONS GRILL EXCELlLENT FOOD CHEAP AND AWESOME SERVICE.
Posted by Robert on April 9, 2008 at 11:36 AM · Report this

remember it is cheap...

Don't think that you're going to get the same high caliber of friendly service for your $5 that you would get at some equally priced lunch spot in Ballard, like...McDonald's! But I have to ask, would it really hurt that much to pretend to like, or even not hate, the people that are giving you money? If this place charged any more, I'd cut the number of stars in half. It's cheap, and it's fine for what you're paying. McDonald's doesn't put up with you reading the menu for 10 minutes either.
Posted by Balludite on December 15, 2007 at 8:59 PM · Report this

My bad....

I'm not a pho professional but I'll know next time that halfway into my pho, as I'm scarfing down the "super tasty" broth, my sinuses will be about to implode and I'll break out in a hot flush because of the massive amount of msg I'm consuming. Should've asked.
Posted by msg headache on November 22, 2007 at 11:22 PM · Report this

check the health inspection report before you go

The pho and cream puffs are delicious but the place is FILTHY and consistently violates health code. Know before you go!
Posted by boobee on November 9, 2007 at 3:04 PM · Report this

Acceptable Fooding

Something about Than Brother's always hits the right place, even though the chicken seems to show more gristle every time I order it (note, I keep ordering it). It's cheap. It's served quickly. The staff is occasionally absentee, but seldom enough to be a problem. Their cream puffs remain my favorite in the city, and they're easy to find almost anywhere, although the U-district location gets ridiculously crowded.
Posted by jabberwockgirl on October 12, 2007 at 7:55 PM · Report this


I have been to three different Than Bros locations. Ballard is O.K., Aurora has good service, but the interior is fairly dirty. Capitol Hill is pathetic. The extremely rude and impatient staff rush your ass within 1-2 minutes of being seated to request your order. Quite presumptuous to assume that one would be ready this quick. Anyways, upon requesting a few minutes to settle in, the server serves a healthy dose of evil-eye. The broth is weak, the quantity and quality of meat paltry and I can't really see any reason to eat here unless you are unfamiliar with the other 300 or so Pho establishments in town....
Posted by Steven_Segal on September 18, 2007 at 5:39 PM · Report this

Cheap and good!

I've been going to Than Brother's for about 10 years now and I've never been disappointed. Their service is always quick and the pho consistent. And, when you order the Vietnamese coffee and save it until the end of your meal to drink with the complimentary cream puff you'll feel as though you're in heaven. What more could you ask for? Oh, if you go, remember to bring cash because that's all they take.
Posted by Joseph_Conrad on August 7, 2007 at 8:46 PM · Report this

Meh. Weak, weak brothsauce

This place seems to shoot for blandness and rude service. The proprietors seem to have secure locks at the sides of their jaws keeping them from smiling or uttering more than a monosyllabic grunt. Sure, it might be from the day’s work of cooking that heady broth for the next day, but it’s also possible that they just hate people. “Not my problem” is the attitude; not improved by the fact that it’s a cash-only establishment and god forbid you ask for any changes to the standard dish of beef and noodles in broth, or ask for limes instead of lemon. Once you’ve got the cash for a dinner of rich, sweetly pungent soup with fresh noodles, and navigated your way past the dour hostess, you get to wait about ten minutes for your food. And from the first taste of Pho Than’s interpretation of that savory broth that you’ve grown to love, the thought flashes through your head… …did they top this up with dishwater? But hey, pho’s cheap, even if the noodles clump together in a pasty ball, and you did get a damp, stale cream puff, so suck it up, pay your $7, and vow never to return. Thaiku, and the other, less well-known places might be more expensive, but it’s better than being alternatively glowered at, then ignored, while you pretend that you’re eating delicious, delicious dishwater pho.
Posted by zymyrgy on July 20, 2007 at 9:04 PM · Report this

Pho fo' sho

The west seattle location is a new local favorite of mine! I paid about 6.25, ate till my heart's content, took the rest home, and got two more meals out of it. The service was quicker than most fast food places you could eat at, and they have a wide selection of pho (but nothing else) and even vegetarian pho. I live off this place.
Posted by MattBringsSoda on July 10, 2007 at 8:54 PM · Report this


Just beware of the take out. The greatness of the pho does not translate well from the styrofoam container to your soup bowl at home. I wish it did.
Posted by homage to me on May 27, 2007 at 8:45 PM · Report this

Don't Forget West Seattle!

They have a location on California Avenue too. Same fast, efficient service, delish cream puffs, and pho pho pho. You gotta love simplicity and consistency. Cash only!
Posted by That Sauce is Hoi-sen on May 25, 2007 at 4:51 PM · Report this

delicious, cheap, fast

The place can't be beat. There needs to be a 1/2 dozen more restaurants like it only: posole, cioppino, soul food, german beer haus sausage, curry. FYI This review was written by a non-editorial staff member of The Stranger.
Posted by Tim Keck on May 24, 2007 at 7:15 PM · Report this

Cream Puff!

Come for the cream puffs! Than Brothers has a pretty good lock on the metropolitan seattle Pho market, and their soup is not bad. But the cream puffs are what really set them apart. A good cheap lunch with above-average Pho!
Posted by Kinkos on May 22, 2007 at 6:03 PM · Report this

Nothing Else

They have pho here. If you don't want pho, don't come here, but if you want pho, COME HERE. This is where they make the best pho, (the Aurora one is better, if a little seedier). Ridiculously cheap, ridiculously fast -- you'll have your soup before the dumbass at the Subway has figured out what kind of drink he wants. Trust me, the "small" is enough for a normal human; you'll leave most of a "medium" or larger behind. And it's GOOD! Cream puffs are ace, too. Beware -- the sriracha sauce can creep up on you; it's not a good pho experience if you're not sweating and possibly weeping afterwards. And for chrissake break out of your rut and try the weird meat -- tendon and stomach are excellent, especially for hangovers.
Posted by Fnarf on May 16, 2007 at 4:00 PM · Report this

Add a review

Click the stars.


Than Brothers
Nearby and Recommended

Bad Albert's (Bar, Restaurant)
Ballard 5100 Ballard Ave NW    phone (206) 789-2000
  • 4.47000/5 Stars.
(based on 15 reader reviews)
The Other Coast Cafe (Restaurant)
Ballard 5315 Ballard Ave NW    phone (206) 789-0936
  • 5.00000/5 Stars.
(based on 1 review)
La Isla (Restaurant)
Ballard 2320 NW Market St    phone (206) 789-0516
  • 3.85000/5 Stars.
(based on 13 reader reviews)
People's Pub (Bar, Restaurant)
Ballard 5429 Ballard Ave NW    phone (206) 783-6521
  • 3.80000/5 Stars.
(based on 10 reader reviews)
Ray's Boathouse (Bar, Restaurant)
Ballard 6049 Seaview Ave NW    phone (206) 789-3770
  • 4.00000/5 Stars.
(based on 5 reader reviews)
India Bistro (Restaurant)
Ballard 2301 NW Market St    phone (206) 783-5080
  • 4.00000/5 Stars.
(based on 8 reader reviews)