February 27, 2013

Banh Mi Boys

I've tried to make it out to Banh Mi Boys a few times now but there's always been huge line ups and I've always been too much of a  cheep ass affordable foodie to fork up $6-$8 for a banh mi sandwich. But I finally walked by one day with a few coworkers and lo and behold- there was no line up! 
All of the condiments are pretty much standard: picked carrots + daikon, cilantro, chilli peppers etc. We ordered one beef cheek ($5.99), five spiced pork belly ($5.99), and Kalbi Beef ($5.99) banh mi  & one beef cheek ($3.49) and pork belly ($3.49) steamed bao plus a large order of kimchi fries ($5.99) to share. 

It was a lot of food for three people and the portions were on the larger side. The bao's especially were a lot bigger than I expected and for $3.49 - they're a pretty good bang for your buck. They were also a lot tastier than I expected. The Kimchi fries were a delightful surprise! The combination of fresh crispy fries, pulled pork, mayo, kimchi and green onions made a really hardy side dish. We all really enjoyed this. 
The Kalbi Banh mi was pretty delicious and the perfect ration of meat to condiment and bun - which I guess makes paying $5.99 for a banh mi a little less painful.  The beef cheek banh mi and bao was the least favourite amongst the three of us. It was just too meaty. I know... coming from me? What a shocker! But we all found it to be very bland and chewy. 
Not surprising, the pork belly banh mi as well as the pork belly bao was my favourite. The meat was nicely seasoned and not too fatty. The bread for the banh mi was nice and crusty as well. The bao itself was soft and warm. They were both pretty yummy and I'd definitely consider ordering them again.
Overall, I would probably come back for the kimchi fries. They were pretty unique and delicious. But as for the banh mi -  $5.99 is still a little to big of a pill to swallow for something that sells for $2 down the street. Yes, I understand the ingredients are more "gourmet" but I am just as satisfied with my $2 cold cut and pate banh mi. The guys definitely know what they're doing though and i'll definitely be back again for a splurge once in a while. 

Banh Mi Boys
392 Queen Street West
Toronto, Ont
Banh Mi Boys on Urbanspoon

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