I love Vietnamese sandwiches, crunchy French baguette, fresh cilantro, pickled carrots, thinly sliced spicy peppers, crisp cucumbers and (for me) grilled chicken. Nothing has topped Paris for a delicious grab and go sandwich. A tiny little mom and pop shop was our daily lunch spot when we visited. Cheap and delicious, it demonstrates not only the quality of French bread but also what occurs due to factors of colonization. The Vietnamese sandwich is a by-product of what happens to food ways when one culture is subjected to the influence of the other.
Ok, so enough colonial talk, let’s talk taste. In Paris, they used some kind of animal fat instead of mayonnaise, which made it decadently tasty. But in order to get my fill here, I head to Nicky’s Vietnamese Sandwich Shop in the east village. Like the one’s in Paris, it is tiny with a limited menu. For the traditional sandwich, they combine ground pork, ham and of course pâté with the usual, cilantro, pickled carrots, cucumbers and mayo (which I never get, because I have always hated it.) The meat was tender and flavorful and the bread was fresh and French making it the perfect late night snack (or any hour you see fit.) The spring rolls fall flat, in both dipping sauce and flavor. But if you stick to the sandwiches, you are sure to enjoy.
Nicky's Vietnamese Sandwiches
150 E 2nd St
New York 10009
What's your favorite place for Vietnamese sandwich shop?