By Khalid AlSabhan
Welcome to K’s Case, where the all-too fussy Khalid (that’s me!) brings down divine judgement upon places that have a certain standing in people’s minds. In other words, I go to supposedly really good or bad college joints and myth-bust their reputation. Case closed.
At both ends of BU’s campus, you can find some of the best meals in Boston, but the stretch of Commonwealth Avenue in between is pretty barren. There are very few places in which you can sit down and enjoy a good meal.
Today, we’ll see if Nud Pob located in Central Campus can make the list!
We’ll be going over the good, the bad and the ugly of what Nud Pob has to offer. At the end, we’ll come to a verdict on whether or not it’s worth the hype.
First, the joint itself. I was warned about it, but nothing could prepare me for the absolute stench of the place. Nud Pob smelled like your roommate’s gym socks, like the Boston harbor in July, like the bathrooms in West clogged up again — none of which put me in the food-ordering mood.
My other senses weren’t lucky, either.
The bright lime green and Fanta orange color scheme was pretty horrendous to look at, and the chefs could probably hear perfectly fine without servers shouting orders at them. And as for the taste…
I asked for the best appetizer, entree and drink they had — crab rangoons, crispy chicken fried rice and Diet Coke. The coke came warm from a clearly broken fridge, which should’ve been the second sign that I was (not) in for a treat.
The food was served within two minutes. That’s six crab rangoons, a full plate of fried rice and a pan-fried chicken filet. In two minutes.
Trying to be as objective as possible, I dipped a rangoon into the provided sauce and took a bite. What I got was essentially rotten fish paste with burnt onions and garlic. My eyes teared up from chewing and swallowing that monstrosity.
The sauce did nothing to mask what was the single worst thing I have ever eaten, bar none. It’s a shame, especially since they nailed the outside of the rangoon — something that very few places actually manage to do. I don’t think I would’ve kept the food down if the texture was as bad as the flavor.
When it came to the fried rice with chicken, the first thing I did was break the poached egg. I had set my standards at the ground, but Nud Pob still somehow disappointed. There’s nothing quite as infuriating as an overcooked poached egg. The fried rice was way off, but it had sweet and spicy kick that was not completely dismal but also not what a good fried rice tastes like.
The dish had a thick, gelatinous sauce that served no purpose. As for the chicken, it was served in slices above the rice. The crust felt and tasted like literal concrete, and the meat tasted and looked like fish — except very, very dry. You couldn’t convince me that I didn’t eat old salmon dipped in cement.
Price really doesn’t matter in this case, as you couldn’t pay me to go back there again. I’m going to mention it anyways, though, to show how absurd the whole experience was.
They charged a fair $1.50 for the Diet Coke, an uncomfortably cheap $5.22 for the rangoons and a whole $11.00 for the fried rice dish. This isn’t OK, people. This isn’t OK at all.
So, is Nud Pob worth it?