Tasty Banh Mi at Ca Phe Rang

Ca Phe Rang
: 147 Spadina Avenue, Toronto
Website: https://capherang.ca/

Ca Phe Rang is a Vietnamese joint that was opened by celebrity chef Matty Matheson along with his mentor, Rang Nguyen.  The menu consists mostly of banh mi and pho (which can be combined by ordering a bowl of pho dipping sauce to go with your sandwich).

I tried a couple of the banh mi, along with the dipping sauce.

Ca Phe Rang

First up was the pork (“Roasted and glazed pork. Bánh mì comes with pâté, carrot, daikon, cucumber, jalapeno, cilantro, Thai basil, white onion, spicy chili paste”).  I’ll admit that I wasn’t crazy about this.  The pork was dry and mostly flavourless, and if there was pate in the sandwich, I couldn’t taste it.  The generous pile of zingy veggies and fresh cilantro are quite tasty, but the sandwich really needed some kind of sauce to bring some moisture and flavour.

(There is the pho dip — which tastes like a pretty standard pho broth — which helps quite a lot.  But this is an optional $3 add-on, so you’d think the sandwich would be able to stand on its own.)

Ca Phe Rang

The brisket (“Roasted and glazed brisket. Bánh Mì comes with pâté, carrot, daikon, cucumber, jalapeno, cilantro, white onion, spicy chili paste”) is substantially better.  Again, the pate was either MIA or applied so sparingly that it may as well not be there.  But the meat is super tender, and it’s saucy and flavourful enough that the sandwich never feels dry like the pork.  It’s actually fairy sweet, but the vinegary bite of the veggies does a great job of balancing this out.  This one doesn’t need the dip at all; it’s thoroughly delicious on its own.

A Decent Cheeseburger at Matty’s Patty’s

Matty's Patty's
: 923a Queen Street West, Toronto
Website: https://www.mattyspattysburgerclub.com/

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first.  This place is called Matty’s Patty’s, but should clearly be called Matty’s Patties.  Apostrophes: they’re not that complicated!  Maybe spend the five minutes it would take to figure out how they work before you name your restaurant?

You might argue that the name is wrong on purpose because it looks better, since both words are so similar, to which I would reply that no, you need to get out of here with that.  That’s BS and we all know it.

You might also argue that no one cares, and that maybe I should be talking about the food, since that’s the point of this whole thing.  And yeah, that’s fair.

Matty's Patty's

The food is fine!  They have two main things on the menu: “Matty’s,” which is a hefty seven ounce burger that comes with mustard sauce, pickles, and onion.  I tried this about a year ago, when this blog was on hiatus, and enjoyed it.

The other thing on the menu is “Patty’s,” which is a more traditional griddle-smashed cheeseburger that you can get as a single, a double, or a triple (a vegetarian version made with Impossible Meat is also an option).  This one comes topped with either Matty’s Patty’s sauce, pickled jalapeno mayo, or spicy ketchup sauce.  I went with the single and had it topped with pickled jalapeno mayo.

Matty's Patty's

It’s pretty decent.  Nothing about it blew me away, but the patty has a very mild beefy flavour and a nice texture thanks to the course grind.  It could stand to be beefier and juicier, but you could absolutely do worse.

The pickled jalapeno mayo mostly just tasted like a slightly zingier version of regular mayo, which is too bad because the burger really needed something a bit more acidic to cut through the richness of the gooey cheese and the patty.

The bun was probably the highlight, oddly enough.  It was super soft, squishy, and fresh, with just the right amount of heft to stand up to the patty.  It kinda reminded me of the potato rolls that have become so popular in the GTA, but better.