• 84°

CULINARY THRILL SEEKING: Banh Mon heaven

While I consider Amu-ny’s Liquor and Deli to have the best sandwiches in Port Arthur, I think I may have had the best sandwich in Beaumont.

For years I’ve been hearing about Chef Monica Cobb’s Renegade street food, featuring a Vietnamese sandwich. I finally dug into one, literally dug, when the Press Club of Southeast Texas board met in the back room of the Log-On Café in Beaumont. Cobb is serving from this funky music and dining venue from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesdays through Fridays.

The fresh loaf of bread held a creamy, slightly spicy blend of meatball and vegetables that were a colorful blend of green and orange. It was crisp, soft and other things in each bite. I had seen a customer happily struggling with his sandwich so I wasn’t overly concerned about making a mess in front of my peers. I started off with a fork, as did others, and we were mercilessly teased by one of our own. He said making a mess is part of the deal. I had dreams of taking part of the sandwich home for dinner, but it was too good and too transitory to not devour the whole thing.

Here was the Cobb menu we chose from:

*Elvis-Black Strap Pork, fried plantains, Thai peanut sauce $13

*Korean BBQ beef meatballs, cucumber-kimchee-pickled ginger $13

*Indian-Spiced Fried Crispy Chicken, red curry honey glaze, mango-mint chutney, crispy black sesame crisps, rice noodles, Asian slaw, snow peas $15

*French inspired- tarragon-parmesan béchamel, sweet peas, shrimp, crab & andouille stuffed bread $15

*Sweet potato, chicken & sausage stew (cup) w/ Gandhi Salad $15

Instant Coffee

If green tea is your thing, I’ll bet you’d like the candy version. Il Morso is Italian for ‘the bite,’ reads this box of four varieties of  thin bites of candies in green tea, mocha, American and coffee and cream. They’re in the neighborhood of 20 calories a pop and very satisfying. SFCA Il Morso Coffee Bars was established in 2015, a very good year for yummies. “Just Add Mouth” the box continues.

Chester can keep his popcorn

I’m a huge fan of Cheetos, especially the “flamin’ hot” variety. I’ve rarely purchased a bag alone, but when sandwiches come with chips, it’s the kind I grab. Sometimes the bag of Cheetos makes it home to serve as salad croutons.

I just ran across Chester’s Flamin’ Hot Popcorn. Popcorn is another weakness of mine, but somehow a combo of two of my crunchy favorites did not equal pleasure. The popcorn was on the soft side and the spices not very present. Chester did not provide that Cheetos crunch I crave. He and I are not happening again.

darraghcastillo@icloud.com