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Ca Com Bánh Mì Bar

The Anchovy team's lockdown banh mi window is sticking around for good.
By Libby Curran
December 14, 2021
By Libby Curran
December 14, 2021

When Anchovy co-owners Jia-Yen Lee and Thi Le first started slinging khao jee pâté — the Lao cousin of the Vietnamese banh mi — during last year's lockdown, it was never meant to become a permanent venture. But as lockdowns and restrictions continued, and the duo's street food offering earned itself a loyal following, it became clear the Ca Com pop-up was here to stay. Now, it's spawned its own standalone shopfront next door.

Named after the Vietnamese words for 'anchovy', Ca Com first made an appearance at the front window of Anchovy in May 2020. The restaurateurs were keen to keep busy while Anchovy was closed to dine-ins, and a rotating menu of banh mi was exactly the kind of accessible, lockdown-friendly fare the neighbourhood needed.

The pair have been running the pop-up on and off ever since, using a hibachi on the window sill to barbecue proteins and ramping up opening hours whenever Melbourne goes into a snap lockdown. The concise banh mi menu changes regularly depending on the availability of meat cuts and other ingredients, giving the team a chance to flex their creativity and test out new flavour combinations for its dedicated Melbourne fans.

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