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Jan 4, 2007 08:35 PM

Grilled pork Vietnamese sandwich from Latte Express - 5th and Market, SF

Had a quick lunch at Latte Express today...second trip there, this time was just as good as the first visit. Tender roast pork with cilantro, slaw, jalapeno. Couldn't tell if there was any extra mayo on it, or just the mayo from the slaw.

I was there at 12:15 or so, and the toaster was full of sandwich was ready in about 2 minutes which was excellent. They take the "express" part of their name seriously. Good choice for cheap lunch in that area, especially if you have limited time.

1 sandwich plus a snapple was 5 dollars.

Dave MP

Latte Express
5th Street (block south of Market)

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  1. Update on this--I went to the Latte Express on Kearny and Sacramento today and had the number 4--grilled pork.

    The pork was fabulous, very juicy. I've noted that Latte Express tends to put more mayo on their sandwiches than other shops, but I don't mind. My sandwich had lots of jalapenos, though if you're heat-averse you can ask to have them omitted.

    And so cheap for so much deliciousness--for a girl on a budget, this is ideal. I think my sandwich was $3.25; you can get a sandwich and Vietnamese coffee deal for $4.80.

    15 Replies
    1. re: pane

      i dunno, something about paying more that $2.50 for a vietnamese sandwich bothers me.

      1. re: nicedragonboy

        Well, we're talking FiDi here. $3.50 beats $8.00 for a banh mi at Out the Door, wouldn't you say?

        1. re: Gary Soup

          Here, here. Or compared to many $8 salads or $8 burritos at Tlaloc. Not a lot of great values in the Financial District compared to other parts of SF, but this is definitely a value compared to other FiDi offerings.

          1. re: Gary Soup

            Eh, Silks at the Mandarin Oriental even beat Out the Door price-wise. They are selling a $16 Banh mi ... with sriracha aioli.

            1. re: rworange

              Ha! Somehow not a shocker from the place with $21 wonton soup on offer.

            2. re: Gary Soup

              Yikes, didn't realize anyone could get away with charging that much for banh mi. i think i'll stick to Ba Le on International in Oakland. It's what I call good ghetto food. Then again, i suppose if you're working in the FiDi you can afford the premium prices.

              1. re: nicedragonboy

                No, those of us spend $3.25 or 3.50 to get bahn mi in the FiDi pay that because it is so hard to get a lunch for under $5.00. Should we pay the over $7.00 round-trip on BART to experience what you call "ghetto food"? Then our lunch would be over $10! I actually prefer the Ba Le in El Cerrito, anyway. It is the cost of real estate in the FiDi that makes the food expensive--please don't insult those of us who work for a living just because we have to commute to the Financial District for our work. Not everyone in the Financial District is a dot-com millionaire, and in fact there are plenty more minimum-wage workers in the area than there are millionaires.

                Back to the food--I love the bahn mi at Cafe Dolci, the little hole-in-the-wall (literally) next to the Walgreen's near 4th and Market. The couple who run the place are just lovely--they have stayed open a few minutes longer to make a sandwich for me on many a Saturday when I had to work.

                1. re: Leadbelly

                  To clarify, that's the Walgreens on the North side of Market close to 3rd; there's another one on the South side of Market close to 4th that doesn't have a Cafe Dolci near it.

                  1. re: Gary Soup

                    Walgreens sprout like weeds in the Financial District. They are the kudzu of retail.

                    1. re: Gary Soup


                      I was just reading this thread and decided to run out and try Cafe Dolci. Had to come back and thank you! Delicious sandwich, for less than half of what I usually end up spending on lunch.( And I never would have found that place on my own.)

                      Cheers, and thanks again!

                    2. re: Leadbelly

                      whoa there...didn't realize any of my comments could be taken as an insult. and none was intended.

                      1. re: nicedragonboy

                        Understood--I overreacted, I don't eat out that often, and frequently bring my own lunch to work, so the idea that I must be rich for spending $3.25 on a sandwich rankled a bit. Hey, its a Friday, its beautiful out, I just got paid on Wednesday--I think I smell a visit to Cafe Dolci in my immediate future!

                  2. re: Gary Soup

                    Plus the banh mi at L/E is better than Out the Door... found the bread at OtD "good" but unsuitable for banh mi... and the pork tough and kind of bland. Latte Express is one of the better deals in the FiDi.

                2. re: pane

                  I guess I had better try it on a weekday. I stopped by once on a Saturday and got one with a filling that was pulled out of a fridge or freezer and popped into a Microwave. It was not good. It had too many carrots for my taste, as well.

                3. Is this anywhere near Moscone? I will be in town for a conference next week and am looking for places to eat near there. I love Bahn Mi.

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: Homero

                    Yes. Moscone Center is located on Howard stretched out between 3rd and 5th Streets. Market is two streets northward toward downtown.

                    1. re: Homero

                      Even closer is Cafe Dolci at 740 Market between Kearny & Grant. Same price, excellent sandwich.

                      1. re: Gary Soup

                        The Latte Express that I posted about originally (on 5th street) is still super close to Moscone Center. That said, the banh mi places in the Tenderloin are a very short cab or busride away, so they are also a possibility. I haven't tried Cafe Dolci....I'll try it sometime soon...that would be just about at Montgomery Station on muni, right?

                        Dave MP

                        1. re: Dave MP

                          A bit west of the Montgomery BART Station, but not by far.

                          1. re: Gary Soup

                            Wow, I walk by there a lot on my way to or from work - I'll have to check it out.