Like Mother Used to Make. New Vietnamese Banh MI, Son of Saigon Cafe Opens in Thonglor

Like Mother Used to Make
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Saigon-style Cafe and Vietnamese Grilled Pork Specialist Open in Thonglor 25, Bangkok.

Dedicated to his mother’s recipe, Phu Anh Tran aka Shaun keeps it original when it comes to fresh Banh Mi. Just opened in October 2021 at Sky Residence, Soi Thonglor 25 (Soi Phrom Phak), Bangkok, the prodigal Son of Son of Saigon has not actually returned but brought back gastronomical momentos of his beloved Saigon and his family recipes with it.

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“When I moved here, I couldn’t find the Banh Mi like at home, so I decided to create it myself”, said Shaun as he addressed his guests adorned in branded Son of Saigon cap and customised apron, backdropped by a quaint but sparkling new shop with colourful murals of iconic landmarks and situations of Saigon.

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The shop facade is impressive with wooden arches, bamboo wall and green neon sign. There were already 2 Instagrammers snapping and posing in prime positions once we arrived. The design of Son of Saigon, gives guests a sense of vintage Saigon combined with modern sensibilities which reflects Jame’s own situation, bringing tradition forth into a new generation.

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The venue can accommodate about 15 or so people between the banquet and wooden seating. The counter displays fresh Banh Mi which we are told were made to Son of Saigon‘s  specifications. The result is a fat, fluffy, light and crispy bread.

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As we witnessed the service team scissor marinated pork into the puffy baguettes, Shaun explains, “we marinate the pork for 24 hours with various herbs and spices passed down from my mother”. When asked if he could divulge that information, the answer was expected, that like all good family recipes, it will always remain a secret.

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It’s this secret special recipe grilled pork that you will find both in Son of Saigon signature grilled pork Banh Mi (260 THB) and also in their ‘ Bún thịt nướng ‘, a rice vermicelli noodle served with fresh and pickled vegetables, dressed with ‘nước mam’ fish sauce and topped with roasted peanuts (Pork 260 THB / Chicken 250 THB).

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Bún thịt nướng is all what you love about Vietnamese food with the Asian staple, noodles combined with fresh vegetables, smokey meat and zingy sauce. Don’t look for Pho Noodles here however as they don’t have it …yet (but hoping). Neither do they apply any fresh chilis in the Banh Mi as it’s all about the key ingredients at Son of Saigon, keeping it fresh and simple like Shaun’s mother had always made for him. Also true to mums, they are generous in protein portions for their dishes. If some are surprised at the price relative to other Vietnamese joints, you’re unlikely to find this amount of grilled Banh Mi meat generosity and quality elsewhere unless paying extra.  

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They do have the quintessence, bottled Sriracha sauce to offer if you’re like those who can’t resist some heat and if you’re looking for refreshments, Son of Saigon have a fairly extensive range of classic Vietnamese beverages like Salted Plum Soda (120 THB), Vietnamese Drip Coffee with Condensed Milk (Hot 130 THB / Iced 140 THB)  and Glass & Pandan Jelly with Fresh or Coconut Milk (100 THB). 

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Son of Saigon is a welcome addition to the Sukhumvit Thonglor dining community, but particularly for those looking for a great place to drop in, chill out and enjoy a Banh Mi, pure and simple.

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Son of Saigon – Authentic Vietnamese Cafe
39 Phrom Phak Alley, Klongton Nua, Watthana, Bangkok 10110

Hours: Wednesday to Monday from 11.00 am – 8.00 pm (Tuesdays closed)
Tel: +66 (0)62 546 1494 or +66 (0)96 246 6224
LINEMAN: @SonofSaigon
Facebook / Instagram: @sonofsaigon

#sonofsaigonbkk #sonofsaigon

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