Location: 1125 Dundas Street East, Mississauga
Ba Le house is clearly doing well — it’s actually an off-shoot of Banh Mi Ba Le, which is in the same plaza just a few stores over. I guess business was brisk enough that they were able to open a second store (which is a bit confusing — if you try to order a banh mi at Banh Mi Ba Le, they’ll direct you to Be Le House instead).
I’m very glad that this place is doing well. There’s actually another, completely unrelated banh mi joint around the corner in the same plaza, Banh Mi Saigon, and I sort of figured that Ba Le would be about the same — good but not great.
I could not have been more wrong. I got the classic assorted cold cut banh mi, and holy moly it was good. Probably the best banh mi I’ve had in the GTA.
Everything about it just works; it’s meaty, porky, and delicious. The proportion of cold cuts (which I’m guessing that they make in house, and which are a cut above the norm) to zingy veggies to fresh bread is just right. There’s a nice slathering of creamy mayo and tasty pate, it’s got a mild but noticeable kick, and a slight sweetness from the hoisin.
And the bread is great; it’s got a delicately crispy exterior and a fluffy but substantial interior that holds up to all the filling quite nicely. A lot of banh mi can wreck the roof of your mouth of you’re not careful; this one has a delightful crispiness that you can still eat with aplomb. No risk of mouth shredding here.
The sandwich comes up to five bucks even, which is an absolute steal for the level of quality that they’re serving up. It’s so good.