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Vietnamese Subs

Does anyone have a "favourite" Viet sub place? There are so many scattered around, but I want authentic ingredients,in a fairly clean establishment. Thanks!

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  1. yes, i definitely do and that place is baile on mackay across from the concordia hall building. they bake their baguettes fresh and when it's available, have the best three color drink!

    5 Replies
    1. re: celfie

      I had a big brunch at home and I'm contemplating trying baile today. Thanks for the recommend!

      1. re: bigfellow

        That place is wonderful although I find the service has been slipping in the past year... Food still as yummy and decently priced as always though.

        AND - Just so you know it's Ba-Le, not Baile


        1. re: immaterialgirl

          I'm irish, hence the gailisised spelling.

      2. re: celfie

        i ordered the vegetarian spring rolls today and pulled out a big piece of raw chicken. the woman at the counter told me it was tofu(was not) then asked me why i was so upset since i wasn't a vegetarian(i had also ordered wonton soup) and could eat meat, right? will not be going back.

        1. i usually get my fix from the Hoang Oanh on St-Denis and Jean-Talon...fresh ingredients and very clean.

          9 Replies
          1. re: hungryann

            I also regularly get my sandwiches from Hoang Oanh. Delicious and ridiculously inexpensive.

            1. re: Harrisonb

              I agree, their subs are great, and they have a nice variety of options including grilled chicken and vegetarian with their own homemade fake meat (seitan).

              1. re: chililala

                Oh, I've never tried the vegetarian one - will also tell vegetarian friends who live around here.

                There have been a few discussions about banh mi.

                1. re: lagatta

                  The veggie one is my favourite, the seitan is super-tasty. The veggie sub at Baile is also quite good, but it's not fake meat, I think it's more of a blend of veggies and tofu...

            2. re: hungryann

              same here. Hoang Oanh is delicious and cheap.

              1. re: alixium

                I actually don't like Hoang Oanh (St-Laurent location). The place smells of farts. It's probably the smell of daikon, I think, but it's really off-putting.

                1. re: Delmare

                  Have you tried the Villeray branch? No, don't come up here just for that, but next time you go to Jean-Talon Market - it is very close. No farty smell, and they have always made my sandwich in front of me.

                2. re: alixium

                  Also I'm used to having the option to put a little Sriracha on my sandwich. Pre-made sandwiches and no Sriracha option offend me.

                  1. re: Delmare

                    Sriracha is good, but they do offer to put in little slices of bird chilies, which certainly spice it up...

              2. I tried starting a discussion about this some time ago to no success, but you can still check out my reviews.


                1. Thanks all fellow chowers! This week Hoang Oanh will get a little visit from yours truly. I'll get a variey and let you know which ones thrill me. I'm looking forward to it!

                  1. I went to Cao Thang yesterday. One thing that annoys me about some Vietnamese sub places is how surly the staff can be if you try to customize your order in any way. You can't have it "your way."

                    A nice lunch though.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: Delmare

                      Another visit to Cao Thang today and it will be my last. The man behind the counter is unbelievably rude. I don't give money to people who haven't learned the basics of human interaction.

                      1. re: Delmare

                        Well Cao Thang has always been my Banh Mi place in Chinatown, but I haven't been in awhile. What's the best alternative for a Bahn Mi in Chinatown?

                        1. re: sweettoothMTL

                          Just go across the street and brave the smell of daikon. The girls working there are really sweet people and the sandwiches are really every bit as good.

                          1. re: Delmare

                            Just came back from a lunch at Hoang Oanh. I must say, it's a good alternative to Cao Thang. The Hoang Oanh subs are more generous with the filling, and filling is tastier than accross the street. The bread is drier however, but at least it break easily when you bite down. The only downside, however considerable, is that's my lunch partner's rice pudding dessert had some rot on it. But still, gotta love Banh Mi, the ice cream we had for desert was more expensive than the actual lunch!

                    2. Had two interesting Vietnamese sub experiences for lunch today!

                      I was near the Marché Oriental and I remembered that last weekend when I was there there was practically a frenzy at the counter where they were making the subs. Since I had only tried the pre-packaged ones on a weekday, I decided to give it a try. Mr. Grumpy behind the counter gave me a look of utter chagrin and said "too late", gesturing to the 4 or 5 remaining pre-packaged ones. As I was buying mine, another woman came in wanting to order 10 subs, and he gave her the same answer. Despite the fact that there were at least a dozen baguettes sliced and waiting on the counter behind him (and not enough pre-packaged ones for her) and she said she had come across town especially for that, he would not make any.

                      When I left the store, I went south instead of my usual north and discovered the Marché Hung Phat, where they were doing a brisk business in (you guessed it) Vietnamese Subs. In fact, the line was out the door and the smell was amazing, so my pre-packaged sub was instantly relegated to tomorrow's lunch and I went in to join the line. It was worth the wait, I got the "sandwich au jambon" which had generous pâté, two kinds of ham, mayo, sauce, carrot/daikon, minced chilis and tons of coriander. It was amazing, and I would definitely go back to try their other versions which look interesting as well!

                      10 Replies
                      1. re: karela

                        Nooo you discovered the secret best banh mi place. Hung Phat beats Hoang Oanh and Cao Thang. easily and they also have great soup dishes you can eat in the small dining area. I like the "ham" and "bbq pork" variety.

                        Last time I was there I overheard this couple who drove from Quebec City to pick up their weekly vietnamese fix.

                        1. re: marblebag

                          I had tried one a few years ago and they skimped on tthe fillings, so I never went back. I will try it again though.

                          1. re: marblebag

                            So I went to Hung Phat today. Firstly, I need to make a correction. The place I had visited a couple of years ago, was not Marche Hung Phat but Thai-Son next door. They are the ones that skimped on my fillings! I checked the windowfront and noticed they sell containers of the carrot/daikon mixture, so I may get it next time and experiment with banh mi style sandwiches at home, but back to MHP: it was really good.
                            I tried the bacon one ( bacon sized slices of pork) and the ham one. Both were excellent but I give the edge to the "bacon" one.
                            Marblebag is that the one you call bbq pork? The girl at the cash told me they don't have it on their board menu. The only pork item I noticed on the board was the minced pork.
                            I still like Hoang Oanh (their daikon mixture is tangier and I love the grilled pork and beef there) but I agree that MHP is a notch above in terms of their bread and porky meats.
                            BTW how is Thai Son in terms of other offerings, they are after all a full-fledged restaurant. Any CH experience there?

                            1. re: hungryann

                              What I called BBQ Pork was from the board on top no? Maybe they changed the name but it is like a pork sausage that is grilled then sliced. The vietnamese name is "nem nuong". You can get this filling at Hoang Oanh and other locations but the do it best at Hung Phat.

                              I never tried the bbq chicken (that's a Romados slot) and I didn't like the "bi" (the other pork ingredient). I hear you can ask for a special which is the ham plus some more meats. You can also ask for the "nem nuong" with extra pate but I think it stands on its own.

                              The Thai-Son restaurant is well known for the duck noodle soup (mi vit) but unfortunately that's all they are good for.

                              I used to go to Cao Thang for banh mi but Hung Phat is the current favorite.

                              1. re: marblebag

                                Now that you mention it, I think there was BBQ pork on the board menu as well as the shredded pork. This ''bacon'' I had wasn't on the board and it looked like bacon slices but it was pork meat with no fat layer (could have been a grilled and sliced pork slab?) It was very good but I will try the BBQ pork next time.

                                1. re: marblebag

                                  Thai-Son restaurant has a pork balls sub, it's no good? Their Chinese BBQ meats are subpar(they seem to make lots of different Asian BBQ meats)?

                            2. re: karela

                              Where is this wonderful sandwich place you speak of?

                              1. re: devilishlyj

                                It's on St.Denis near Jean-Talon, next to the Marché Oriental. The address is 7099 St. Denis.

                                I saw some one eating bun bo hué in the (two table) dining area and noticed they had some other stuff to eat in as well. It looked awesome!

                              2. re: karela

                                Tried Hung Phat this last weekend, best sub I have ever had, car none. The bread was perfect, the fillings (BBQ pork) flavorful and bright tasting. I have had a craving for another sub for the entire week.

                                1. re: karela

                                  I used to go to Hoang Oanh for many years but since marche hung phat opened, i have to admit they have the best french bread for banh mi, not to mention their long waiting line, that place is really great! i also love their bun bo hue, a very spicy noodle soup!

                                2. My vote has to go to Café Saigon!
                                  I take the nem (kind of like a paste) with extra cilantro and a cafe sua da (Vietnamese iced coffee).

                                  Life doesn't get any better!

                                  Café Saigon
                                  1280 Rue St-Andre, Montréal, QC
                                  (514) 849-0429‎

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: DeeFoodie

                                    Just tried Cafe Saigon. It was my first Vietnamese sub experience and i really enjoyed it! Got the beef sub was very tasty and I will definetly go back. Although now Im curious to try other places to compare.

                                  2. I'm excited to try some of these. I've been going to Sencha on St. Laurent just about St Viateur all year and eating their veggie banh mi sandwich. It inspired me to try making my own, but I'm just going to let them be a take-out kind of thing.

                                    5602 Boul Saint-Laurent, Montreal, QC H2T1S8, CA

                                    1. I get my vietnamese subs at C'Menu on Beaubien right next to Super Infotech.
                                      They have a different variety from "traditional" places I find but I really like them.
                                      3$, very well filled sandwiches, and the place is very very clean

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: daviiiiiid


                                        I searched for Super Infotech and found 1897 Beaubien east - can you confirm that it is close to Papineau ?

                                        Thanks !

                                      2. There's a new place that has just opened about a week ago on St-Denis called Vua. The subs are pretty and good. The place is very modern for a vietnamese restaurant. It also have sushis, lots of vietnamese traditional meals and desserts.

                                        1579, St-Denis, Montreal/ corner Maisonneuve. Right below the Thai Express

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: Stradale

                                          yes, Vua is a good spot with great selection and the sandwiches are a pretty good price when considering the neighborhood. definitely a lot of real vietnamese snacks and food.

                                          1. re: Stradale

                                            Yup, it's very good. Somehow hadn't realized they were around until a few weeks ago.

                                          2. Has anyone tried Nha Trang on Jean-Talon O?

                                            6 Replies
                                            1. re: hungryann

                                              I've been to Nha Trang a few times. It's pretty good. The woman who runs it is very nice. I recently went to Hoang Oanh and i love it. That is my new go to place. I'm going to try Hung Phat next.

                                              1. re: canada_doug

                                                I walked in to Nha Trang and it was uninspiring; they listed basic banh mi like chicken and ham only. I will stick with my usual choices on St-Denis.

                                                1. re: hungryann

                                                  @Hungryann: I don't know if you went recently. I just discovered them today and although the decoration is not inspiring. I can tell you that it was an experience that I will repeat often. It was way above par many Vietnamese place. see my reviews on their thread that I will create.

                                                  1. re: maj54us

                                                    I went in 2010 and walked out. it just gave me a weird vibe. I never went back.

                                                2. re: canada_doug

                                                  I wanted to go to Banj Mi Cao Thang accross the street but they were closed.

                                                  So Went to HOANG OANH. And it was not very good. bread was stale and their spread was on the sweet side.

                                                3. re: hungryann

                                                  Idem. Friends in Parc-Ex say it is okay but prefer the Jean-Talon/St-Denis places, in particular Hoang Oanh. It is fine if you live there and don't want to make the small trek (most understandable!) but if I lived somewhere else I'd prefer Hoang Oanh. (Technically I live in-between the two, but a bit closer to Hoang Oanh and no viaduct).

                                                4. I tried Ba-le on mackay yesterday and I really enjoyed it. I got the grilled beef and it was quite good. Especially because of the homemade baguette. Before here I used to only get them at cafe Saigon on St andre, now not sure which I like better. Ba-le is much closer to me so Ill be abusing it for the next little while.

                                                  5 Replies
                                                  1. re: jay_81k

                                                    too bad eons pass before 1 sandwich is made at ba-le

                                                    1. re: celfie

                                                      haha it does! Except yesterday she ran out of bread and I had to wait 15 minutes for a fresh batch which in the end was nice. So Far Ive tried their grilled beef and the grilled pork and prefer the beef.

                                                    2. re: jay_81k

                                                      I went to Ba Le for the first time yesterday, and it won't be the last. I had the grilled pork, and she made one end beef, just to try it. I preferred the pork. The roll is amazing (and was still a bit warm, must've been a fresh batch), the meat was pretty generous and also nicely warm, and she asked how spicy I liked it. I said "pretty spicy, but not really spicy", and here's the best part: she made it spicy! I could feel the burn in every bite, and it grew, but it wasn't overwhelming the other flavours. Beautiful. Someone who finally takes a caucasian at their word when they want their food spicy!

                                                      I heard this place gets busy. I went late on a rainy afternoon, that's why I was able to chat a bit. My sandwich took probably 7-8 minutes to make. I wasn't complaining cause it was obviously made fresh, including the meat heated on the grill, but that would seem like "eons" if you're only on a half-hour lunch break.

                                                        1. re: Shattered

                                                          ya i noticed.. Pretty sad about it...

                                                      1. Now that the thread has come up again, it reminds me that I meant to post here. I was at Hung Phat the other day, grabbing a bite to eat, and I noticed that the woman in front of me has some sort of shredded thing in her sandwich that isn't on the menu and came from the fridge below. When I asked what it was, it turned out to be tofu. Not the standard kind, but the "skin" that comes from the top of the soy milk when you are making tofu, and it is usually rolled and dehydrated. I believe it is also called "yuba". I had it in my sandwich and really enjoyed it. Good to know if you have veggie friends or aren't always in the mood for meat! I wish that they would put these things on the menu.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: karela

                                                          Yuba! I was just actually doing a little research on truffle oil...sadly...nothing but chemicals!! Inadvertently I came across an article in NYTimes by, chef, Daniel Patterson, San Francisco, Restaurant, Coi. He has spent a lot of time in France, his mother/grandmother are French.
                                                          But..this led me to videos of his and one featuring, yuba,("skin" that forms on tofu) he used it as pasta, in what looked like an incredible dish. So, where can I find yuba in Montreal?

                                                          1. re: eatwell

                                                            You can buy tofu skin either dried or frozen in most East Asian supermarkets.

                                                        2. Bring this thread back. LOVE Banh Mi, any good to great options in the Concordia area (give or take a few blocks, willing to trek for a good one!)


                                                          6 Replies
                                                          1. re: tbgallant

                                                            nope, the one place closed down

                                                            there are good options in chinatown which is only a 15 min walk from concordia or 3 metro stops

                                                            1. re: tbgallant

                                                              I used to get banh mi from Cafe X, the student-run cafe of Concordia's faculty of fine arts (in the VA building). I'm not sure if they still have those. I will do some investigating and get back. In the meantime maybe someone else knows.

                                                                1. re: catroast

                                                                  The one in the EV building as well?

                                                            2. Another little up for this thread, tried Marche Hung Phat yesterday when heading to JTM, really good sandwich, found it better than Hoang Oanh (only went to the one on St-Laurent though) bread was crispy yet holding itself, great fillings and lots of it, although, i would have loved a bit more chilies in my sandwich.

                                                              Will surely go back when in the area (or make the trek over there just for it)

                                                              2 Replies
                                                              1. re: westaust

                                                                Just ask for extra chilies, I'm sure they will accomodate you.

                                                                1. re: hungryann

                                                                  I recently had a very decent one at a Vietnamese counter restaurant in the Marche Hawaii on Marcel Laurin in S. Laurent.Really fresh and very tasty indeed! They have a nice variety of toppings and are accommodating.

                                                              2. I discovered Marché Hung Phat last weekend, and the Banh Mi there was pretty good. But I wasn't crazy about the bread; it was really huge, so my sandwich felt more like a football than a "sub." It was certainly tasty (I had the "grilled pork," which was some kind of pink mystery loaf and my partner had the minced pork). In both cases the meat was cold.

                                                                Here's where I get heretical and risk banishment from the board: I just had a Banh Mi at Vie&Nam at Gare Central. I generally don't have good things to say about "mall food" but for this I'll make an exception.

                                                                For one thing, the bread was perfect. It was just the right size, and the airy rice-flour mie basically vanished once the sandwich was filled, leaving just a crispy crust to hold it all together, like a bread-crust napkin. That's the way I like it.

                                                                The fillings are less exotic (this being a food court chain), but I again got the grilled pork, and this time it was actual pork, hot off the grill. The combination of the hot pork, the spicy sauce (I asked for "spicy") mixed with the cold pickled daikon and carrots made for a luscious and delightful experience in my mouth, especially since it wasn't lost in a lot of bread.

                                                                So sue me. Although Hung Phat was arguably more "authentic" (there's that word) and allowed for more exotic ingredients, the overall experience of the Vie&Nam one was better.

                                                                12 Replies
                                                                1. re: blork

                                                                  The banh mi at Vie&Nam is good butit's also close to $6 after tax IIRC. I find that too expensive for banh mi.

                                                                  1. re: hungryann

                                                                    $6 for a good sandwich is not excessive. If it was an "Italian" sandwich instead of an Asian one would you also complain about the price?

                                                                    1. re: blork

                                                                      I don't find it that good to warrant paying practically double for it. There are perfectly good banh mi for $3.50 taxes in at most shops. The ethnicity of the sandwich has nothing to do with it.

                                                                      1. re: hungryann

                                                                        IMO the price at Vie&Nam is all about the location. And for a food court next to a train station, it's damn good and an acceptable value. I wouldn't go out of my way for it, but it's always a good option if you're looking for a snack for your train ride.

                                                                        As for Hung Phat, I've always avoided the pink mystery loaf and the shredded pork (a preparation I've had elsewhere and disliked; kinda dry and mealy, and I've no reason to think Hung Phat's version is any different).

                                                                        The grilled lemongrass beef and the tofu & mushroom are my faves. They will put extra chilies on request, but it may take some insisting to get it really spicy.

                                                                        1. re: Mr F

                                                                          Do you get the grilled lemongrass beef at Hung Phat? I don't remember seeing that as an option. (Was it served hot?)

                                                                          1. re: blork

                                                                            Yes, I get it at Hung Phat. I'm not sure, but it might not be part of the regular menu, and in any case it seems to sell out often. If you don't see it, ask.

                                                                            The beef is pre-cooked, but they do warm it up. It's in quite small pieces, presumably to make it sandwich-friendly -- there's no chance of mangling your sandwich trying to bite through a gristly bit.

                                                                          2. re: Mr F

                                                                            You may be right about the location but the pricing is not specific to that location in particular. The other locations have the same price but your point about the train station is valid.

                                                                            1. re: hungryann

                                                                              It's sort of a given that no food court item is less than $5. Their whole business model is based on the idea of extracting the "standard meal" price from as many people as possible, as quickly as possible. (Standard meal price being somewhere around $8.)

                                                                              That's why you can't just get a slice of pizza at most pizza places. You have to get a slice, salad, and drink. Bingo, $7.

                                                                            2. re: Mr F

                                                                              They also have a bacon one by special request.

                                                                              1. re: hungryann

                                                                                I've seen but never tried the bacon. Any good?

                                                                              2. re: Mr F

                                                                                The pink mystery loaf is grilled pork sliced up. Don't eat it more than once a month, it's fatty. The beef isn't always available.