Is It Any Good?

Bánh Mì up by Cal State Northridge.

Bun Me! on Urbanspoon
Bun Me! on Foodio54

Thank goodness for College Kids!

There, I said it. Hell, I’ll say it again: thank goodness for College Kids!

Never mind that I was one. Never mind that my dear ol’ Dad made a great living for 40 years teaching them…

Thank goodness for College Kids because wherever they go, they create a market for cheap eats! And we all like cheap eats!

I’ve always thought that Vietnamese Bánh Mì Sandwiches were the perfect College Town food. Cheap and nutritious, they were a great go-anywhere meal, that had the added advantage of teasing out the Food Nerd in all of us.

I was gratified that they opened up a Bánh Mì & Cali Che near Pasadena City College. I am equally gratified they have Bun Me! over near Cal State Northridge.

Bun Me! is small, as in twelve tables (indoors) small. Twelve chairs and about twenty people coming in at a time. It was only through blind, stupid luck that managed to finagle a table. I was willing to each my Bánh Mì in the car, but when you see a seat open here, you take it.

Bun Me! is a typical counter service place. Step up and place your order. Take your seat (if there is one), and wait for your order to arrive. Someone will come out from the back, and magically find you with your food. Just keep that slip they give you, just in case.

 

WHAT SHOULD I GET?: Reading the Menu, the Bun Me! moniker seems a little less adorable, since it’s taken me all of these weeks to realize that “Bun Me!” is a anglicized version of “Bánh Mì”. Oy.

Guess that’s how we’re rollin’. Anyway…

I got the Grilled Pork “Bun Me”.

Ugh.

Look, it was good. It was well prepared, and set on good bread. It’s not the best Bánh Mì in town, thought it acquitted itself well in the face of its competition. But it’s got two strikes going against it.

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One, it’s one of the smallest Bánh Mì I’ve ever had…and noticeably so.

Two, it;s the second most expensive Bánh Mì I’ve ever had, second only to O Bánh Mì in Silver Lake.

Neither of these two factors should prevent you from coming here and trying one on. The sandwiches are still good, and the prices (even though higher than what you’d find in the San Gabriel Valley) are still reasonable.

I also had their Crispy Egg Rolls, which complemented things nicely.

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IMPORTANT SAFETY TIP, PEOPLE: Couple things. One, remember the crowds. It gets super busy, and there aren’t too many seats, inside or outside.

Two, they do take credit cards, but there’s a $7.00 limit on charges. I do believe they stick you with a $1.00 service charge if you don’t meet that threshold. So no just ordering a sandwich and charging it to your VISA Card.

They give you a number stand after you pay for your meal…and you won’t need one. Don’t worry the staff will find your. How I don’t know, but they will find you.

 

PARKING: Hellish, but with a high turnover.

This is a busy, busy, busy mini-mall Bun Me! is parked in, so expect the lot to be filled up when you arrive, but there is also a lot of turnover, so expect a space to be opening up soon.

Also, as a Parking Tip that should also count as a Safety Tip. When the place gets too filled, there are no spaces, people will wait along the restaurant side of the Parking Lot. Normally, this doesn’t mean anything, but where they park not only blocks the cars that have spaces near the Restaurants, but makes it hard for the other cars to back out of their spaces.

It’s not any kind of a danger, but it is super-annoying.

Bun Me! in Northridge.

MAP DIRECTIONS:
Bun Me!
9420 Reseda Blvd #5
Northridge, CA 91324

Tel: (818) 993-0438

Hours:
Sunday: 11:00 am – 8:00 pm
Monday-Saturday: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm