Best Vietnamese sandwich (banh mi) in Mt. View/vicinity?
Where does a chowhound go for his/her favorite vietnamese sandwich (banh mi)?
What about pho?
Location: Mt. View, Sunnyvale, Los Altos, Palo Alto.
Just had the chicken banh mi Saigon City (San Mateo). It's the crispy/soft roll kind, not the baguette. Served hot, like it was just baked (since it was 11:30 it probably was). I missed the heavier pickle flavor and crunch of Lee's -- SC's just had extremely soft shredded carrot without much crunch or tangy flavor. Great rare beef pho with generous herbs.
I've had mixed success with Vi Hoa: it has been great, with a brightly flavored soup and good noodles, and it has also been disappointing, with cloudy muck and soggy noodles.
I have also had a range of experiences at Pho To Chau, on Villa just off Castro in downtown Mountain View. Sometimes the ingredients come together perfectly, and it's about half the price of Vi Hoa's sit-down fanciness.
The chain Lee's is a source of banh mi in Sunnyvale, largely lauded because they bake their baguettes there, they open at 7 am, and your number gets called by a computer voice. If the baguettes are fresh, they can be a treat, and it is one of the only places near the Peninsula where you can get sardines and pate on a still-warm baguette for breakfast. Like a lot of 'hounds, I am partial to a few chains: the Atlanta-based megalith Popeyes, the strange but liver-and-onions cafeteria called Luby's, and Lee's. Oh, plus Beard Papa.
Pho Vi Hoa, 4546 El Camino Real, Los Altos. www.phovihoa.com
Pho To Chau, 853 Villa, Mountain View.
Lee's Sandwiches, 939 W El Camino Real, Sunnyvale.