Back in April, I mentioned that Paris Bakery was taking over the old Thanh Son Tofu location. Two weeks ago, I noticed they were open. So having to work this past weekend, I decided on dropping by for a "breakfast/lunch" take-out visit.
Having not set foot in this shop in about six years, I'd forgotten just how large the place was. There seemed to be so much open space. It's a far cry from the other location. Yes, I said other location. I recognized the older woman, who was always so chatty. She and the young woman making my sandwich, her daughter, were very talkative on this morning.
Apparently, they've been in need of much more space for a while now, so this location fills the gap. I was told that the other location will still be open, which I found odd since you can literally see the other Paris Bakery if you walk out to the street. Her son will be running that location, her daughter gets the new shop. I mentioned that parking....oh boy.....that triggered a discourse about how bad the parking situation is/was at that location. "People come in to buy a bread and spend two dollars, they walk outside a minute later to find a ticket on their car....it was bad!" No wonder those little old Vietnamese ladies would rush out of the place practically running me over. You don't mess with them; they're tough. In their hands, a simple baguette becomes a deadly weapon.
I ordered two sandwiches ($3.50/each) eating half of each for breakfast than lunch.
Starting with the Dac Biet. The bread for this sandwich was decently crusty and slightly bready as is standard for their baguettes. If you've had a Banh Mi from any shop that makes their own, you've either had it from here or Le Chef Bakery. It's still a bit more dense than I prefer, but not bad.
I'd forgotten that Paris tends to be somewhat heavy handed in the application of mayo at times, which was the case with this sandwich.
With regards to that most enjoyable game of jalapeno roulette....this one was pretty spicy!
There was a good amount of pickled vegetables, which were nice and crisp, though on the mild side. The meat was decent for a banh mi, except that it as ice cold. In terms of proportion, I thought it was good.
I also ordered the Jamon, which I thought was better than the "special" for a couple of reasons.
The amount of "Jamon" was on the small side and it was also very cold, but the flavors of the meat, pickles, cilantro, and pate blended pretty well together. All in all, a decent banh mi.
I actually thought the sandwiches here were better than I remembered. Which means I'll be returning soon. Heck, at the least you'll know that the bread is fresh...or should be fresh. I was told that both shops have the same hours, which means opening early, like around 5am and closing in the late afternoon as well.
4616 El Cajon Blvd
San Diego, CA 92115
Now I've got to check out the Thanh Son Tofu in their new location! Stay tuned!