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Banh Mi Ngon opening in West Roxbury next week

We have a new banh mi shop opening in West Roxbury on Tuesday 5/29 (pending final inspection), Banh Mi Ngon at 1759 Centre St. It's located next to Christo's Pizza and on the same block as the recently opened Red-Eyed Pig BBQ and Los Amigos Burritos (the 4th new resto in WR in the last 6 months and 7th in the last year, including Just Baked, Lean Works, Sticky Rice Cafe and Porter Cafe). Van Tang and her husband Tu Vu are newcomers to the restaurant scene but are working with some friends who own Le's in Chestnut Hill. The menu (which I'll try to scan and post) is small but interesting, with most sandwiches in the $4 range, and some apps and drinks (Vietnamese coffee, smoothies).

Some additional coverage of the opening can be found in the West Roxbury Patch (http://westroxbury.patch.com/articles...) and the West Roxbury Transcript (http://www.wickedlocal.com/west-roxbu...).

Looking forward to hearing reviews. I'll be in line there next Tuesday.

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  1. As noted, here are some photos of the menu.

    3 Replies
    1. re: ML02132

      Very exciting! Great to see some unusual options. Nice prices, too.


      1. re: ML02132

        Mmm, I loves me some sardine banh mi......

      2. Thanks for the update! Do they have a listed phone # or website or FB page? Any online presence?

        1 Reply
        1. re: el_caballero

          Telephone number is 617-325-0946, but I am not aware of any online presence just yet. I believe they are starting small.

        2. bahn mi, decent barbeque and burritos in the same block?

          i think i just put on five pounds.

          1. They don't have an online presence yet... but are working on it!

            And just a minor correction, Le's actually is not affiliated with this business. Their friend who inspired it was a manager at Le's (not Le himself), Lan Nguyen, and she has been in the restaurant business for over 15 years herself.

            1. Alright, gave them a try tonight (tuesday...grand opening), and a word of warning, they close at 7, so plan accordingly. I arrived just as they were closing, but the lovely owners took my order anyways, which gives them street cred with me, so nice first start. They were out of a few of the bahn mi fixings (beef, pork), so I went with the shrimp paste bahn mi, and the shrimp toast (the wife had the same).
              A pretty good iteration of a classic bahn mi, the bread was the correct type, a nice crusty roll, the shrimp paste was tasty, and the pickled veggies solid. If anything I wish it was a little more spicy, but I wonder if maybe they were throttling it back for the neighborhood....will try and reiterate spicy the next time. Shrimp toast was also quite tasty as well. A very good first impression. Prices were a bit higher than chinatown, but, so I imagine is the rent!
              I think if they consider staying open until 8 maybe (that should cover the dinner rush), and finish adding signage to their store (kind of barren right now, with handwritten menu and signs on the wall), these folks may have a hit on their hand.

              1 Reply
              1. re: devilham

                I hit them tonight as well (warning: I am a homer neighborhood cheerleader for new restaurants, if it wasn't obvious) and I was very happy with the product. I'm new to banh mi, and so I ordered the classic (pork, ham, meatloaf & pate), along with a fresh spring roll and an iced Vietnamese coffee. Top notch all around, echoing the high marks for the bread noted above.

                @lo216 - thanks for the clarification on the Le's connection; I did not mean to mislead in my original comments.

                Counter sandwich shot, coming up....

              2. Tried it last night - Mixed review - Hopefully the negatives are just kinks that need to be worked out:
                I tried 3 sandwiches: Grilled Chicken / Shredded Chicken / Sardines. I got there at 6:40 pm, and they were out of beef (and I don't do pork) so my choices were limited. While running out of food is a good sign for business, hopefully they will get their quantities in order over time. The grilled chicken was pretty good, and better than the shredded breast meat chicken. Not a ton of meat in either sandwich. Lots of cilantro, but not a lot of pickled veg. Fiery jalapenos (which I asked for). The bread might have been the highlight. They were using a radio-shack toaster over to warm the buns, which was cute, but inefficient.
                Also had some fresh spring rolls ($3) which were good.
                Can't ask for much more for $4/sandwich ($3.95 for sardines (?)), but I think it took a full 20 minutes to get my order done - which seems odd for 'fast food'.
                I will definitely go back - Banh Mi is a tasty diversion from sandwiches across the street at the Real Deal. I am hoping they do well in the neighborhood - they might need a little time to get into gear, but I am willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Cork

                  I went the day before yesterday and got the grilled pork banh mi. The bread was good and the pork was tasty. My only complaint(as Cork already said) was that there was very little pickled carrot and daikon. If I had taken the few strands in one half of my sandwich and moved it to the other half there still would have been less on that half than what I'm use to getting at other places. Next time, I will ask for extra. The people working there, I assume the owners, we're really nice and appreciative for the business they were getting. It didn't take long to get my sandwich...about 5 minutes. There was only 1 person in front of me.

                  1. re: catsmeow

                    Stopped in tonight for a Classic #1, very tasty,asked me if I wanted it spicy, served in under 4 minutes, and they are now open until 8pm. The three generations who run the front counter are all appreciative of feedback, asking where I heard of their restaurant (Chow, natch). The place is starting to pick up business...phone didn't stop ringing with to go orders while we munched our sandwiches in the front window....my friend practically inhaled her sardine version. Out of dessert, dammit. The canned soymilk was sweet enough anyway. They are raising prices July 1- definitely going back for more-nice to have banh mi on this side of the city!

                    1. re: PainterGirl

                      Was in last night, too, for the fourth time. Becoming a big fan of the grilled pork banh mi, and the iced Vietnamese coffee (I only have one comp, but it blows the Bon Me truck away). Tried the shrimp toast, too, which I did not realize was fried - but very good with a nice dipping sauce. Also, they have a new website listing the menu (http://www.banhmingon.net) and are staying open until 8 pm on weeknights in response to demands.

                2. I finally got to stop in here last week and loved it. I had a classic pork banh mi and my husband had the sardine banh mi. We also had the summer rolls and I had a limeade. I can't remember if he got something to drink, but the full total of all of that was $15. There is a sign saying they will raise their prices on July 1, so get there now!

                  Summer rolls were simple and fresh with shrimp, chicken and plenty of cilantro; the pork banh mi was very flavorful despite having thin fillings; I'm not a banh mi expert so this may be standard. Salt and pepper sprinkled on top helped enhance all of the flavors - pickles, pork and a pressed pork "meatloaf" and cilantro and mayo on french baguette. Didn't taste the sardines but my husband approved. The limeade was delicious and refreshing, perfect for hot days - I saw other people getting the iced coffee which looked creamy and wonderful but I couldn't have coffee by that hour. Was fairly busy and took about 5 minutes or so for our order to be ready, we ate at their bar seats inside, but this place is made for great takeout. Would be perfect to get a bunch of sandwiches and cut them all into smaller pieces to share with friends.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Bugsey34

                    I just moved to WR and can confirm that this place is yummy!! They have raised their prices (still under 5 dollars for a sandwich) but it's a good deal.

                    I want to add that their boba is very good. I consider myself a boba connoisseur and it is made very well.

                    If they keep their prices low, I think they can get a lot of business because people would come from afar to eat the quality food (I would, for under 5 dollars!).

                    1. re: xiaobao12

                      They do a quality banh mi: love the juicy pork meatball, especially. Sardine is also very nice. Well worth the premium if you're local. I've heard two customers on two visits expressing their gratitude that they don't have to go into town for one.

                      I was impressed to see a dad with a couple of little kids getting banh mi for the whole family; not much like my childhood! Wish they didn't batch their coffee, but that's a quibble: it's a quick-service, mostly takeout joint, after all.

                      A nice handful of good options nearby now, a much-improved little neighborhood for chow these days.


                      1. re: MC Slim JB

                        FYI, they are adding Pho in the next couple of weeks. Irrationally excited.

                        1. re: ML02132

                          Banh Mi Ngon will be serving pho starting today! Check out their facebook page for the latest updates: www.facebook.com/banhmingon

                  2. Picked up a Grilled Pork Banh Mi this afternoon, one word, Awesome! Grilled pork was fresh and delicious. Great option and closer than Pho Viet.

                    1. I had a very decadent sandwich there the other day. I wanted the fish sausage stuff that they do on a banh mi, but it wasn't ready yet, so they offered me Tempura Fish. I said yes, and I ate every bit of that crispey fried goodness...I haz a happy!

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: galleygirl

                        I thought that the grilled pork was every bit as good as Pho Viet. I am dying to try the fish tacos and burritos at the new place on the same block. I even had pretty decent BBQ at the Red Eyed Pig. This little block is quite the find!

                        1. re: bakerboyz

                          Pho is very nice! Had it last night for the first time. Nice flavoured broth - lots of ?5 spice, perhaps more than I like, but it was very aromatic.

                          1. re: Cork

                            Agreed; I had the Pho with Chicken. Very nice broth; had a smell and taste of nutmeg and gourd. Really good.

                          2. re: bakerboyz

                            baker, the fish burrito / taco at Los Amigos is very good!!

                            It is a very good block to have close by...