So i stopped by an choi today, which is a new banh mi place in the LES on Orchard and Broome. It's a cool little place with exposed concrete and sort of dimly lit w/ candles (semi industrial looking interior). The people running the place were very nice.
From what i hear they went to vietnam and had some sort of revelation to open a banh mi and pho place. The menu is pretty short with 4 types of banh mi, 2 types of pho (beef and chicken) and some appetizers like cha gio (fried spring rolls)
I just got my food to go since I was alone and this place is close to my apt:
- banh mi thit nuong (grilled lemongrass pork sandwich): the baguette was mediocre, not fluffy enough and wasn't as crispy on the outside as it should be. The pork was a little too chewy and had some of "stops" in it (stuff that you can't really chew through). It was flavored decently. The other fillings (mayo, cucumber, peppers, pickled vegetables) were all fine and fresh
Overall, I was slightly disappointed as I wanted to like this place since the people were so nice and I think they seem to be making an effort to bring viet food to the mainstream (i think viet food is one of the best cuisines in the world when done right). Hopefully they can improve their sandwiches as I believe they seem to still be working on their recipes and they were so nice that i wish them success. I will be back to try their pho, but I'm not all that hopeful as pho is hard to get right. At the end of the day, I'd much rather go to saigon banh mi or banh mi so 1, which are considerably better