One hobby spot stop and craigslist bicycle pick-up later my good friend/roommate Steven and I make a right turn to Viet City. Down the Orlando road of East Colonial, just before hitting Mills Ave. is where East meets West. If it’s your first time around there, understand my seriousness when I say the next couple blocks you see is an entire Vietnamese Community. The sad truth is the cultural three-sixty can seem overwhelming and intimidating. What’s Vietnamese food even look like anyway? What is banh mi and what is boba? I happened to know a bit of what to expect but that’s not saying much. I never actually had any Viet food, only heard and seen great things. Soooooooo.. DON”T BE SCURRED! Vietnamese food is not some alien style of food, it’s awesome, try it.
So we enter the doors of Yum-Mi Sandwiches(a sub shop, how American!) Well actually it’s French, but more than anything it’s uniquely Vietnamese. If you is confused let me break it down with a quick history. “Banh Mi” translated means bread, but more specifically baguette bread. Baguette was introduced to Vietnam during its colonial period by the French. The French essentially took their baguette and created salad-type sandwiches using Vietnamese ingredients. Fast-forward to modern day and the opportunity to drive 15 minutes out for banh mi is real.
The place smelled great from the get-go. Fresh bread is baked daily in-house and permeates the air. When you order you have sandwiches, sandwiches and more sandwiches to choose from. Ranging from The Veganism/$4.5 (fried tofu, bean curd, jicama, carrots, yam, vermicelli) to The V.P (Vietnamese-style philly steak-and-cheese w/2 over-easy eggs on top) Yum-Mi Sandwiches pairs inventiveness with tradition to stand out from the surrounding area.
- Marinated Pork/ $4.5
- It’s beautiful, if you don’t agree I don’t like you too much
- Second sandwich ordered, The V.P. Dis fo’ da phillies out daire/ $6.5
The bread is undeniable. It might be the best part. It ties it all together for a sub that’s the best. Things can get messy but that’s half the fun. Some saucy fingers are a small drawback to ascend to the gates of food heaven. Everything is super fresh. Seems simple but it’s rare to come by. Here all sandwiches come with carrots, cucumber, cilantro, onions and usually jalapeno unless asked to be taken off.
My advice, get everything as comes and when in doubt try more.Steven and I were starving. It was a long day out so we decided to splurge. With such great prices matched with the food this is almost a crime that more UCF students don’t frequent or know about Yum-Mi.
I got a Mango Lychee fresh fruit freezer with boba and a steamed bun filled with pork. If you are unfamiliar, boba is a tapioca ball that which from the starch of a cassava root. History lesson aside, when cooked right, boba is a sweet chewy ball that adds for fun with your drink. Think of a gummy-bear that doesn’t get hard when in something cold. Try it if you dare, it’s a win-win scenario.
- Mango Lychee, boba at the bottom/$3.95
- This was incredible! choose from vegetarian, pork or chicken to fill the bun. Steamed Bun/$2
Finally the plate of the day is awarded to Steven’s second filling, Miss Piggy/$4.75
- caramelized pork belly, lettuce, tomatoes
You have to try it yourself. You can eat here even when not looking for a sandwich. Stocked with a coffee bar, boba teas and signature freezers, Yum-Mi Sandwiches is for anytime during the the day. Follow them on Facebook and let them know Happy Plate loves them.
1227 north mills avenue
Orlando, fl 32803