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Looking for decent Bahn Mi in Raleigh, Durham, NC area.

Tried 9N9 for bahn mi and was so very disappointed. I read another posting from few years back that said there is a grocery store that sells bahn mi off Capital? Does anyone know the address or the name of this place? Also is La Vie off capital any good?

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  1. The grocery is in the shopping center at the SE corner of Capital and Brentwood, just a few lights north of 440.

    I tried to get a few banh mi made on a Fri. evening (which I have done before) and the clerk said they don't make them on the weekends - said to get them in the food court. This is new, but I think he was slammed with stocking shelves and didn't want to take the time to mess with the sandwiches. The last time I had their banh mi a woman who had never helped me before made the sandwiches and added some pulled pork to the mix - another first.

    I ended up ordering from the place straight in front of where the hall to the food court opens out. Their banh mi was .50 higher, less pickled vegetables, more jalapeno. It was good, but I prefer the one in the grocery more. The grocery has been having interesting sweets on a table near the sandwich station lately.

    Many posters say the pho in the food court is the best around. Three fellows were having some when I ordered the sandwiches. It looked great and the aroma was very tempting. Once the weather cools down I plan to finally try it there!

    A side note, the Chinese place in this plaza - Fortune Palace- is very good too. There is a traditional menu, an American menu (some overlap) and usually a number of seafood specials. I have never tried the lunch buffet, so can't comment on that.

    4 Replies
    1. re: meatn3

      update:
      This past Friday evening the grocery accepted our order - no problem!

      1. re: meatn3

        More....

        The grocery no longer makes them (new ownership).

        The place in the food court does, but they are nowhere near as good anymore.

        1. re: meatn3

          Just a quick update-

          The grocery is closed, the space is for rent. The doors to the food court/nail salon/etc. are locked and it looks as though that area is closed up.

          The irony is they have changed the name of the plaza, now called Asian Plaza!

          This could be a terrific location for a food co-op if anyone is still trying to put one together in Raleigh.

      2. re: meatn3

        I have forgotten all about this posting. Thank you for the insight. Will definitely try it.

      3. If you want to go a little further out to Chapel Hill, Sandwhich does a Bahn Mi that's pretty good. A little more jalapeno than I prefer, but that's easy to remove.

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        Sandwich
        431 W Franklin St # 16, Chapel Hill, NC

        1. Though I've never had it, I do know that Jujube in Chapel Hill has a bahn mi on the lunch menu. For my money, the best bahn mi I've ever had is at the vietnamese Pakse Cafe in Greensboro at the corner of Freeman Mill Rd and Flordia.

          8 Replies
          1. re: ToothTooth

            Your posting led me to try Pakse Cafe a few years ago - it is fantastic. I plan my trips west so that I can stop off there and get several to go.

            Thank you so much, I've had many delicious lunches since learning of them. The fact that they are such an easy detour from I-40 makes it even sweeter!

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            Pakse Cafe
            827 W Florida St, Greensboro, NC 27406

            1. re: meatn3

              I do the exact same thing. If I'm EVER in the area of Pakse Cafe during their business hours, you better believe I'm gonna swing off I-40 and pick up about 6 or 8 of those sammiches to go! Glad you enjoy them! They really are great.

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              Pakse Cafe
              827 W Florida St, Greensboro, NC 27406

              1. re: ToothTooth

                Jujube was the best bahn mi i had in NC. I guess i am looking for authentic bahn mi, that i used to get up in northern VA. next, I will Try Pakse Cafe!! Thanks for the tips

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                Pakse Cafe
                827 W Florida St, Greensboro, NC 27406

                1. re: ToothTooth

                  Just stopped off a Pakse Cafe for the first time today. Pretty sketchy strip mall location, but definitely good sandwiches. I have to drive through the area again next month and I'm planning another stop there.

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                  Pakse Cafe
                  827 W Florida St, Greensboro, NC 27406

                2. re: meatn3

                  Banh Mi Saigon 3808 High Point Rd Greensboro, NC 27407 I am hearing this place is also good, and they make their own bread every couple of hours.

                3. re: ToothTooth

                  Do you know if they offer any vegetarian bahn mi?

                  1. re: kirol7777

                    I was in there today and didn't notice a vegetarian option, but I wasn't looking for it either. There were about 5-6 options.

                    They are quite nice and English isn't a problem, so they may be open to making one special.

                    ISTR Saigon Bakery has a vegetarian option which is tasty.

                    1. re: kirol7777

                      If I remember correctly (and forgive me if someone has already mentioned this on this thread) City Beverage has a veg. bahn mi.

                  2. What's wrong with 9N9's Banh Mi? Maybe it's gone downhill of late but the times I've had it in the past I thought it was pretty good. And cheap. Excellent with their spicy, cilantro-y hot & sour soup.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: PeterB

                      The bread was all wrong at 9N9, (not crispy, too chewy) plus there was no dressing; made for a very dry sandwich.

                      Not horrible by any stretch, I'd eat one again, but not even in the same ballpark as what I was hoping for,

                      1. re: PeterB

                        when i went for lunch at 9n9, all i got was spongy bread and some meats. I am not sure if the chef was out and someone else was filling in that day or something. I guess 9N9 is best for pho

                        1. re: durhamfoodie3

                          Yeah, the sandwich at 9n9 only had a passing resemblance to a bahn mi. The bread was bad and the meats weren't very good at all. I understand that 9n9 has stopped selling them altogether, which is probably for the best, because that sandwich really wasn't making a good attempt.

                      2. Dalat In Mission Valley Shopping Shopping in Raleigh used to have a separate Bahn Mi shop next to their restaurant which had very good sandwiches as I remember. They closed the shop a few years ago but I think the restaurant still serves them.

                        The best I've had in the triangle are at the new Spize Cafe on Fayetteville St in Raleigh. They may not be exactly authentic (they don't even call them bahn mi) but the baguette was delectably crunchy, they were nice and spicy and they offer a variety of non-traditional fillings ... but they really are bahn mi. Try them.

                        9 Replies
                        1. re: TerryG

                          I second Dalat,,,,,the Bahn Mi is really good there.

                          1. re: TerryG

                            I'll second the bahn mi at Spize Cafe. They simply call them baguettes, and they're excellent.

                            1. re: albritton76

                              Thanks for the second on the Spize. "baguettes" I really think their special, but it's been a while. Need to try them out again.

                              1. re: TerryG

                                Just hit Spize for lunch. Had their "baguette. " Delicious! Plenty of grilled meat, fresh vegies and herbs. But best of all -- the bread was properly crusty. The best BM I've had in the Triangle. At $7.95, it's not the bargain that traditional Bahn Mi often are, but well worth it as a lunch sandwich.

                              2. re: albritton76

                                Another shout out for Spize...their lemongrass pork "baguette" is awesome.

                                1. re: dinersaurus

                                  And another enthusiastic vote for Spize. They deliver to Duke, the owner is very gracious, and the baguettes are wonderful: each bite a little different, and very fresh and flavorful throughout.

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                                  Spize Cafe
                                  121 Fayetteville St, Raleigh, NC 27601

                                  1. re: BebeNC

                                    Spize does have good sandwiches, but I find it hard to believe that they deliver from downtown Raleigh to Duke University. That's a really long trip.

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                                    Spize Cafe
                                    121 Fayetteville St, Raleigh, NC 27601

                                    1. re: ToothTooth

                                      Believe it, only check their minimum. I do large group catering fairly often.

                                      1. re: BebeNC

                                        That's a pretty important point to make:

                                        Spize will deliver to Durham, as long as you order a bunch of food and run up a tab that makes it worth their while to deliver it to Duke.

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                                        Spize Cafe
                                        121 Fayetteville St, Raleigh, NC 27601