After sampling Banh Mi’s at both Keu and Banh Mi 11’s shops in Shoreditch I have come to the conclusion that the only way to eat Banh Mi is out on the street.I love eating on the street, the thrill of walking around munching on something delectable or even sitting on a plastic chair, or a wall watching the world go by is for me part and parcel of Street Food.
The owners of Viet Grill and Cay Tre have opened their little piece of Banh Mi heaven for the nearby lunchtime workers who want something different for their lunch instead of the £3 lunchtime from that orange supermarket.
But low and behold Banh Mi 11, the famed stall in both Berwick Street and Broadway Market fame also have a small shop not 5 minutes away.
I sampled Banh Mi’s from both shops within half an hour of each other and I definitely preferred the Banh Mi 11 baguette, not only for the bread, which wasn’t over crispy and crumbling in my hand like the former, the fillings were superior as well, the carrot and daikon had been properly pickled unlike many banh mi operators who just julienne veg and throw them in. Grrrrr…
But it troubled me as I sat there (in both places) eating what is essentially street food, inside. It felt wrong, so wrong.
Can’t quite put my finger on it, but I think it may just need noise, wind, sun or rain, footsteps, cars, mopeds, people, chatter, bids, planes, concrete and trees to name a few to make a Banh Mi a proper Banh Mi. Or am I mad?
Still having trouble trying to figure out as to why I did it twice. So there is a possibility that I am crazee and you can ignore everything above and go sit inside Keu and Banh Mi 11 where you will have very fine Banh Mi’s in a comfortable and safe surroundings.
But if I am loco, at least I do not separate my beans from my eggs….. Now that’s madness.