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Bangin’ bánh mì baguettes are the main reason to visit this Arndale market newbie
The latest addition to Arndale's food market, Viet Shack has caused quite a stir, offering self-styled Vietnamese street food with a modern twist. With counter service and seating shared with the rest of the market's customers, it's set up perfectly for a quick, cheap lunch. That said, this isn't food that you'll necessarily want to rush.
You'd be hard pushed to find a better value, tastier sandwich in the Arndale than the pork bánh mì, worth every penny of the £3 asking price. The bread is the sandwich's only weak point, a serviceable baguette, but not as light as it could be. The fillings are quality, though; the pork is delicious – tender, sweet, spicy and lemongrass-heavy. Supported by carrots, cucumber and heaps of fresh coriander, all the sandwich needs is a squirt of sriracha. Another traditional offering, summer rolls come with an array of dipping sauces, including spicy peanut, but the prawns within are vulnerable to rubberiness depending how freshly prepared they are.
More outlandish options include a burger, comprising a standard beef patty, brightened up with bánh mì-style salad toppings, and a hot dog, dressed up with chicken and topped with crispy onions and sriracha. More expensive grilled meat plates are available; lamb chops or BBQ pork are served with rice and though enjoyable, don’t offer the same value as other areas of the menu.
All in all, Viet Shack is a more than welcome newcomer, with friendly and enthusiastic staff only strengthening their case. There's the occasional dud, but you'd struggle to find better quality options at this price point in the vicinity of the Arndale, especially in the sandwich department.