The Tay Do Supermarket is more upscale, westernized and cleaner. There are usually some pre-made bánh mí on the deli counter for sale for only two dollars. These are a good deal, and pretty much do everything you want from a drive-away sandwich. Peppers are always included. The made-to-order menu sandwiches include a chicken offering and the buns here are a little harder than in the ready-made version. If you ask the friendly folks behind the counter to make you some delicious sandwiches, remember to ask for peppers. If you are a white boy like me, they assume you can’t handle it and sometimes omit them even when you ask.
The Cafe Thao Mi is a restaurant and coffee shop—they have a full selection of Vietnamese food available, both prepared and displayed on the counter (for cash and dash dining). It’s a “cute” place and I feel a little sad that it is always empty in its sort of post-civilization walking mall. The bánh mí are offered in a number of varieties, both pork and chicken and the counter-help are happy to talk sandwiches. You can get precisely what you want if you really know what that is. This is the first bánh mí place I discovered, and it is probably my favorite. I always get the simple combination sandwich here, the number one. It gets the flavors just right every time.
I love these little sandwiches. They make me feel sophisticated and urban, while at the same time satisfying my cheap-and-getting-away-with-it personality. You should check them out at your earliest convenience.