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Apr 16, 2014 12:25 PM

My Quest to Find LA's Most Expensive Banh Mi

Previous efforts along this quest were Spice Table (sadly shuttered) and Starry Kitchen's Friday pop up in China Town. Both delicious albeit expensive Pork belly Banh Mis. Today's effort was to newly opened Hero Shop LA in what I believe is referred to as Downtown's Historic Core just down from Cole's. I was genetically predetermined to get the Fatty Brisket Banh Mi @ $11. This was a flavor bomb in a good way. It would be too spicy for anyone with a low tolerance for spice. There was no jalapeno visible. I believe that the spice came from the aioli used. The bread however or their treatment of it can use some work. It essentially delaminated. A crusty layer on the top just came off in rather large pieces.

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  1. May I suggest:

    East Borough ($12-13)
    Red Medicine ($12)

    15 Replies
    1. re: chrishei

      Gjelina Take Away Brisket Bahn Mi $13

      1. re: karynm

        It's apparent that my quest must go West.

        1. re: JAB

          Yes, go west, young man.....

          I forget how much the Mendo Farms one is, tasty mofo... Not traditional though. Are you only test driving traditional ones?

              1. re: schrutefarms

                I know.... I can't even mention it without my husband going nuts about it.... Okay, now I'm craving it!

                1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                  I used to flip flop between the steak BLT and the Not-so-fried chicken…until I had the pork belly Banh Mi. It's so cravable. Have you had the lemongrass steak Banh Mi?

                  1. re: schrutefarms

                    NOOOOOO!! Haven't been in a while, as my hairdresser was in Marina del Rey and I used to treat myself after my appointment to the one in the plaza there. But since she got out of the business I get my hair done elsewhere, and now I'm just going to have to rectify that very soon! All I have to do is mention it to my husband.....

                    1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                      Please report back if you do! I can't seem to tear myself away from the pork belly long enough to try anything else!!

                      1. re: schrutefarms

                        Hahaha, I make no guarantees that I can either!! But will do!

            1. re: JAB

              Any quest for the most expensive anything in LA must include the west side.

          1. re: chrishei

            How are East Borough's btw, have you tried them chrishei?

            1. re: Dirtywextraolives

              I have! (


              TL:DR - pretty damn good. Actually does a very good job capturing aspects of pho. Does itself no favors by calling the sandwich a banh mi (from a price perspective), so just think of it as a Mendo Farms-special type of sandwich, and you'll feel much better. Helps that it's like a footlong in size.

              1. re: chrishei

                Thanks! I'd like to try that place.....

            2. re: chrishei

              +1 east borough. Good spot for a lunch break

            3. sorry, can't stand it any longer-makes my eyes hurt- can you please edit thread to say "banh mi"

              1. RIP Spice Table Banh Mi.

                I wonder what happened to their bread guy.

                1 Reply
                1. Even further west (and south), the soft shell crab banh mi at Little Sister in Manhattan Beach ($18). Not always in season, but always delicious, if not purely traditional.

                  1. Banh Mi at Mendocino Farsm ($11)

                    On a $/ounce basis, I think this sandwich has to take the crown.

                    2 Replies