Once upon a time, after visiting Ba Xuyen, my favorite banh mi spot in all of New York City, several times, I told my then roommate back in 2009-2010 that Sunset Park would be a good neighborhood to live in. It had a huge park nearby. It was in the heart of an area that has both a large Mexican/Latin community (like Little Mexico) AND a Chinese/Asian community (known as one of many Chinatowns in New York). The neighborhood had a really pleasant family friendly feel, which is basically code for “safe.” At that time, the rents were still quite cheap.
I still think Sunset Park would be a great place to live if you choose to live in New York. Since 2009, more fun, trendy restaurants, cafes, and bakeries have opened. I notice more White people frequenting the businesses we enjoy, especially Ba Xuyen. But every time we come back here for food, I am reminded of how I always want to eat literally everything here, but it would be pretty much impossible to do it given that we don’t live even remotely close by, and we come here maybe once or twice every YEAR.
In one afternoon’s visit, we had a black sesame iced latte from a trendy Malaysian owned cafe called Parlay; banh mi thit nguoi and jackfruit shake from Ba Xuyen; Hainese and roast chicken rice and laksa from Hainan Chicken House; picked up 40 pork and shrimp dumplings (frozen) and a hot sweetened soy milk from Kai Feng Dumpling House; got duck dumpling takeout from Orchid Dim Sum Cafe; snagged a guava/cheese flaky pastry and a vanilla concha from La Flor de Izucar Bakery; and split a beef tongue taco and horchata from Tacos El Bronco, the taco truck. That’s a pretty darn large variety of food right there.
So much good food in Sunset Park, but so little time! And that doesn’t even cover all the other places that I would have wanted to check out, both old and new for us!