Lunch Q: Vietnamese Sandwiches at Saigon Deli

by Harlan Yee on November 5th, 2009

Saigon Deli Vietnamese Sandwich 010Vietnamese sandwiches are good and cheap! When I was first introduced to these tasty sandwiches, they were only $1.50 each! Today’s sandwiches come from Saigon Deli in Seattle’s International District. It’s a small deli located in a strip mall with very tight parking. If you’ve ever been to a Vietnamese deli, it can be quite confusing when it’s busy. I don’t speak the language and I’m often guessing when my order is ready. Usually, the cashier will be holding up my sandwiches looking for the person who ordered them. What I try to do is remember who was in front of me. When they’ve got their order, I know I’m next. It’s usually crowded at lunch time and I’m standing in the back of the store after I’ve placed my order.

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When you walk in, the place is small, just enough room for a small group of people. Surrounding you are tables and coolers full of food. Most of which, I’ve never tried.


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When I get up to the counter, I place my order for chicken sandwiches and then step back into the crowd so others can order. At some Vietnamese delis, the menus are all in Vietnamese, here, they are also in English.


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In the meantime, we’re deciding what else to get. There’s plenty of time to look around to see what else they offer.

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Right up front, the steam trays serve up hot dishes but the rest of the deli has items that are wrapped in plastic and styrofoam trays. Everytime I go, I always find it interesting seeing all the unusual looking foods.

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We pick up pre-packaged salad rolls and a couple of egg rolls to go with our lunch. The deli is take-out only so today, we head to the Space Needle observation deck to enjoy our food.

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The sandwiches here are pretty good and cheap but I recently tried another place that was better and a little more expensive. That’ll be for another RenderQ lunch posting. The sandwiches here are quite large and are made with a crispy French baguette. Inside, there’s chicken, cilantro, cucumber,  jalapeños pickled daikon, shredded carrots and I think mayo and soy sauce. It’s all quite tasty.

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The salad rolls weren’t very big and they were loosely wrapped and limp. I’ve definitely had better. They come with a peanut sauce for dipping but I find the sauce here a bit too thin. The egg rolls were what I’d expect, good and fried!

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All in all, another good lunch! And how can you complain at $8.00 for two of us which included 2 sandwiches, 2 salad rolls, 2 egg rolls and 2 sodas. Subway can’t compete with this! Can anyone beat that for a cheap lunch?

From Lunch Q

  1. $2 for a vietnamese sub? That is ridiculously cheap!

  2. Harlan Yee permalink

    Yeah, it’s very cheap! But I miss the place where I used to get $1.50 subs that tasted even better!

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