Perhaps we should start calling Sixth Avenue “the de-sandwiched zone” (DSZ).
Residents of Park Slope will certainly feel that way, now that the notorious Vietnamese sandwich renegade Henry Huynh has abandoned his eponymous shop on Seventh Avenue and opened Home, a new Viet-style joint on Fifth Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets.
And he does so in the wake of a controversial battle with his original Vietnamese sandwich guru, Hanco’s on Seventh Avenue, that threatened to turn the beloved banh mi into a painful reminder of everything that has ever gone wrong in Indochina.
So now the question is one that was asked two generations ago: Who lost Vietnam?
Huynh comes to the sandwich wars with years of baggage — namely accusations that he’s a Vietnamese sandwich spy who stole Hanco’s recipe for the tasty, French-influenced mix of pate, ground pork, ham, hot peppers, pickled vegetables and baguette before opening Henry’s last year.
“He stole the recipe,” Hanco Tang told The Brooklyn Paper last August. “We don’t have proof, but it just disappeared. … They were like spies.”
Now he’s done it again.
“I’ve split from my partner [at Henry’s] and opened up this place,” said Huynh, who always rocks his cap cocked slightly to the side, giving him a certain “bad boy” aura that you can taste in every bite.
On Wednesday, Huynh and two employees were hard at work making delicious, $6 sandwiches. A fact-finding mission by The Brooklyn Paper revealed that whatever similarities Huynh’s original sandwiches had to Hanco’s has been lost in the fog of war. His current banh mi is much spicier and features marginally better ham than Hanco’s.
Huynh, who moved to Brooklyn from Ho Chi Minh City in 2001, touted an added bonus of his new sandwich joint, which is ideally located directly across the street from MS 51.
“The students come in here all the time,” Huynh said. “They love the bubble tea.”
Home [349 Fifth Ave. between Fourth and Fifth streets in Park Slope, (718) 369-2984].
©2010 Community News Group
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