HO CHI MINH CITY | Bánh mì is one of the most well known dishes of Vietnam. The delicious filled Vietnamese baguette can be found all over the world, but there’s nothing quite like enjoying one on the streets of Vietnam.
The exact story of who invented bánh mì as we know it today is, as is usually the case with these things, disputed. What’s not in dispute is that Lê Minh Ngọc and Nguyễn Thị Tịnh were one of the first, opening Bánh Mì Hòa Mã in 1958. Still in the same spot, run by three generations of the family, Bánh Mì Hòa Mã, remains one of the best places for bánh mì in Ho Chi Minh City.
The menu is simple, two dishes, iced or hot Vietnamese coffee, and water. The familiar bánh mì kẹp thịt is a wonderfully light and airy Vietnamese baguette filled with pork, ham, pork pate, mayonnaise, pickled veggies, and chilli, perfect for takeaway. If you’re dining in, on one of the little laneway plastic seats and tables, you’ll notice everyone is enjoying the dish I’ve photographed here. It’s called bánh mì ốp la đủ thứ, and is one of the best breakfasts in town.
This ‘deconstruced’ bánh mì consists of a sizzling hot skillet filled with two fried eggs and several cuts of pork. To the side, a small dish of pate and mayonnaise, a plate of assorted pickled veg, and a freshly baked Vietnamese baguette. How you enjoy it is up to you. You can tear the baguette in half an fill it like a roll, or rip of pieces of bread and mop up the egg yolks and other ingredients in bite-sized pieces, which is what most do. Either way, you won’t be disappointed. 64 years after it first opened, Bánh Mì Hòa Mã is still at the top of the game.
Bánh Mì Hòa Mã
53 Đ. Cao Thắng
Ho Chi Minh City
Mon – Sun: 6:00am to 11:00am