I was introduced to Au Petit Café last year on a lunch trip, with my coworkers proclaiming that they have “the best” Vietnamese sandwiches in Vancouver. Not that I want to hurt my coworker’s feelings, but my number 1 spot for Vietnamese sandwiches is still at Hen Long Supermarket in Surrey (reviews pending). Nevertheless, they do have pretty awesome sandwiches.
I went there recently, tried out 3 different sandwiches, and a Vietnamese rice roll dish. It really sucks not having proper names for their dishes in English on the menu, as they only have names in Traditional Chinese or Vietnamese. So for English only readers, you can order their food in numbers with descriptions at the bottom. I had the #1, #2, and #5 sandwiches, and #13 rice noodle.
#1 sandwich ($4.50) is their house special sandwich, it is french bread sub with home made ham, house meat balls, veggies, and hot pepper. #2 sandwich ($3.50) is french bread sub with home made ham, liver paté, veggies and hot peppers. #5 sandwich ($3.50) is french bread sub with shredded pork, veggies and fish sauce.
To my own surprise, my favorite was #2, having liver paté and all, it was the only one without the overwhelming taste of meat. The house meat balls for the #1 sandwich were good, but combined with the fatty home made ham, it was a little too greasy and meaty for me. Also the hot peppers in my sandwiches that day were HOT. I can take spicy food pretty well, but those were just too ridiculously hot. I ended up taking the rest of the hot peppers in my sandwiches out, because the first one lingered and burnt in my mouth for a good 5 minutes.
The french bread itself on all the sandwiches was the freshest bread I’ve ever had on a Vietnamese sandwich. Probably, and probably the freshest bread you will ever taste in a sandwich. The crust is thin and crispy and the center is realllly soft. So good.
I also have to recommend the #13 rice roll dish ($6.26). It is Vietnamese ham, bean sprouts, vegetables, basil, on large rice noodle and fish sauce. If you are slightly curious about what authentic Vietnamese cuisine taste like, you should order this. It is light, the seasoning was perfect and the fish sauce a little sweet, all taste really good together. So very yummy.
Au Petit Café is a good place to go for lunch, be prepared to wait in line and have some cash in your pockets. I don’t remember ever getting a seat right away when I get there because the place is so tiny and busy. I always had to wait at least 10minutes for a table, but the waitresses were very nice and efficient.
Note: Cash Only! Street Parking Only.