Ba Xuyên

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86 Very Good

This unassuming Vietnamese sandwich shop is home to the absolute best bánh mì in town.

4222 Eighth Ave., Brooklyn, NY, 11232


Known For

The lowdown

Thanks to a modest renovation a while back, Sunset Park’s venerable cafeteria-style shop now gleams brighter than ever on its desolate stretch of Chinatown’s Eighth Avenue. Sandwiches remain mini masterpieces that loom larger than the apparent sum of their ingredients, thanks in part to subtleties of temperature and texture. Order the bánh mì thịt nguội, or “combination.” Choose a spice level, and the cook will give the loaf, made by Neri’s bakery in Port Chester, a slight warmup in the toaster. The buttery pâté — the exact nature of which has flummoxed diners for years — is already applied, a crucial step, and the ham is stacked with half-moons of chả lụa, the spongy pork roll that no one will be able to romanticize, and even more pork. All of the vegetables contribute vibrant flavors: skin-on pickled cucumber spears, slivers of pickled carrot and stinky daikon, stem-y cilantro, and raw jalapeño, in order of diminishing snap. The finished sandwich is warm and packed tight, and the bread crackles and collapses in a fantastic, meaty crunch.

What you need to know

Recommended DishesCombination bánh mì; bánh mì with meatballs; bánh mì with grilled pork; bánh mì with pâté and cold cuts; avocado milkshake.

DrinksNo Alcohol

Noise LevelCivilized