During our food crawl in Bushwick yesterday, we ate at two trendy, fusion Vietnamese spots and a taco spot. The first Vietnamese spot we ate at was Lucy’s, which was known for modern iterations on pho and banh mi. We ordered a brisket banh mi to share, and it was definitely an experience. While we visited District Saigon in Astoria about a month ago and were blown away by their smoked brisket pho, this banh mi was a bit more of a departure from the traditional banh mi in that the brisket had really little to no Vietnamese flavor at all; it really tasted like good Texan-style brisket stuffed into a French bread roll. The bread roll reminded me more of the bread used for po boy sandwiches, and the hint of the banh mi really was in the raw vegetable and mayonnaise fillings inside.
The second Vietnamese spot we visited was Bunker, which was also on my Yelp list. Everything was very sweet, from the cocktail we shared to the bowl of plain pho broth. I think it’s likely a regional difference since the owners may originally be from Southern Vietnam, and so they like their broths sweeter, but it was just too sweet for me. The aroma and flavor were good, but I think I prefer the northern style pho broth more since it’s more smokey and intensely savory. I did love the decor at Bunker, with all its wall murals and plants everywhere. The outdoor seating was really perfect for the outdoor dining setup during this pandemic; they really have the ideal situation already!