I just went back to Toronto for a couple of days and I absolutely had to make a pit stop at Banh Mi Boys, by far my favorite discovery from when I used to live in the city.
Banh Mi Boys is an Asian sandwich shop, inspired by Vietnamese street food but also influenced by Taiwanese and Korean food. 3 brothers started it: David, Philip and Peter Chau, who all used to work at their parents’ Vietnamese sub shops. More about them here.
Now, as the name indicates, you can – of course – get the traditional Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwiches here, but that’s not what made this place famous. What really put Banh Mi Boys on the map is their creative Asian twist on steamed bao and tacos. Those tiny delicacies are so good indeed that I never got around to trying their Banh Mi, although I am sure they are great too.
To start with, every time I go, I order the Kimchi fries, a delightful combination of fries, spicy pulled pork, Kewpie (sweet Japanese mayo), green onions and Korean kimchi. Yummy 😉 I became completely addicted to those and I am telling you, do not go there without ordering that, at least to share.
Then I usually select a couple of baos and tacos depending on my mood. This time around, I got a pork belly and a fried chicken bao, as well as a Kalbi beef taco. I have to say that I personally really love the baos here. The steamed buns are soft and warm and a perfect fit with the fillings. The pork belly was a little too greasy to my taste but I loved the fried chicken (the contrast between the crispy chicken and the soft bun was incredible). Never really disappointed, it’s always good!
This is a fast food so the “ambiance” is pretty limited but it’s clean and efficient, two great virtues for a fast food. You make your order at the cash and then wait in front of the open kitchen while they prepare your food. The staff will ask you how spicy you want each dish in your order, which is great. A lot of people come here for take out but if you come outside of rush hours you can also take a seat and eat there.
This Asian fast food is original, well served, fresh (packed with veggies and herbs) & cheap (about 15$ for 2). Perfect lunch spot in the city!!!
Careful though, it’s really addictive.