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Vietnamese taco.. err.. Banh Mi Truck?

TonyC Apr 10, 2009 02:13 PM

Supposedly there is one at the corner of Spring and Alpine Ave in Chinatown.

I've NEVER seen it, I've NEVER eaten there, but I'm deathly curious. Has anyone been?

This is gonna own Kogi's.

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  1. slowrider RE: TonyC Apr 10, 2009 02:31 PM

    It's usually there on the wknds. during the day.
    Have seen it a number of times......have not tried it though........they have a number of different items.........Banh Mi, Pho, Spring Rolls etc........

    1. s
      Sam D. RE: TonyC Apr 10, 2009 03:15 PM

      It has been there during daytime hours every time I've passed by that intersection. The truck is always parked in a parking lot on the northwest corner right next to the sidewalk. not on the street. I've eaten food from there a few times. The banh mi are okay, which is fine if you are nearby but not good enough to make it a destination eatery.

      1. DiveFan RE: TonyC Apr 10, 2009 03:18 PM

        I was about to try it but their bread looked pretty lame. The thin, crunchy Lee's style baguette is my preference.
        BTW you've got quite a few banh mi and pho options within walking distance.

        3 Replies
        1. re: DiveFan
          Low Blood Sugar RE: DiveFan May 27, 2009 03:57 PM

          Where are some good banh mi's nearby?

          1. re: Low Blood Sugar
            taiwanesesmalleats RE: Low Blood Sugar May 27, 2009 08:03 PM

            Good is a relative term. I work nearby and sometimes get a hankering for banh mi. They are nothing compared to offerings in the SGV or Little Saigon. A rundown of places that sell them off the top of my head: Buu Dien, Banh Mi My Dung, LA Sandwich, Lien Hoa Deli, Chinatown Deli, and Rainbow Bakery. Of those places, my pick would be Rainbow Bakery. They recently remodeled so the interior is much cleaner, brighter and easier to order. They also sell che if you want that. Sandwiches are between $2-3, cash only.

          2. re: DiveFan
            DiveFan RE: DiveFan May 27, 2009 08:16 PM

            The most well known one is Buu Dien. The other places I know by location and can't always remember the name.
            - The market up the hill (Alpine, College?) in a strip mall (can't find it for the life of me)
            - At least one of several Viet restos in the large 727 N. Broadway mall
            - The bakery (IIRC China Town Deli) at the entrance of the huge 828 N Broadway mall
            I think that even Pho Hoa might have them.
            None of these joints are worth a special trip for banh mi.
            However if you're in the mood for pho ga, Hoan Kiem is your kind of place.

            BTW here's the truck:

            Hoan Kiem
            727 N Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90012

            Buu Dien
            642 N Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90012

            Pho Hoa
            818 N Spring St Ste 103, Los Angeles, CA 90012

            China Town Deli
            818 N Broadway Ste 101, Los Angeles, CA 90012

          3. ipsedixit RE: TonyC Apr 10, 2009 03:23 PM

            Glorified vietnamese hot dog cart.

            Kogi has nothing to worry about.

            1. w
              wchung89 RE: TonyC May 27, 2009 03:42 PM

              Well...im pretty sure this truck WAYYYYY predates kogi. its been there for as long as i could remember. since i was a kid-- at least 15 yrs, and i dont know how long ago before that.

              1. h
                heinous RE: TonyC May 27, 2009 05:25 PM

                I love that truck. It was my favorite banh mi place for the longest time, especially if you ordered with extra meat. :D If you were ordering to eat later, the guy would pack the veggies separately so as not to make your sandwich soggy - and he would give you a ton of veggies, which I love. If you're eating right away, they toast it and pack it all in. Yum. Perfect balance of pate to sliced meat to veggies and chiles.

                But last time I was there (a few weeks ago), there were different people manning the truck, and it wasn't as good. I don't know if ownership changed or it was just for the day. I tried to go last week, but I was alone and couldn't find parking. :( I will definitely be back soon and will report in!

                1. c
                  Cinnamon RE: TonyC May 27, 2009 07:25 PM

                  Can we all chip in for gas and somebody translate and book them to come over to the Westside?

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Cinnamon
                    Jase RE: Cinnamon May 27, 2009 08:06 PM

                    Agreed You'd think that a bahn mi truck would be able to follow the Kogi model. They wouldn't have the high rent prices of a brick and mortar place. The food is highly portable and I'd guess easy to make from inside a truck. Heck they could probably do spring rolls, some pastries and iced coffee too. All for a low price and still turn a profit.

                    1. re: Jase
                      Das Ubergeek RE: Jase May 28, 2009 12:06 PM

                      Apparently they do enough business at that intersection that they're not into moving.

                      Also, there are precious few taco trucks on the Westside proper.

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