You know when you stumble across something, and you think about how awesome you are for finding something so great? That’s how I feel about Saigon Fresh in Gungahlin.
It’s a tiny little hole in the wall, tucked away in the Coles building in Gungahlin. The actual store is just next door to Best and Less. Blink and you’ll miss it.
Their menu isn’t huge, it mainly consists of dishes like banh mi, rice paper rolls, and wraps. They also have a pretty cool drinks menu but more on that later.
I ordered a chicken banh mi. The other options were pork, meatball, or vegetarian. You could pick and choose from the standard fillings of homemade pate, mayonnaise, sweet and sour carrot (had never heard of this one before!), cucumber, red onion, coriander, chilli and soy sauce. I decided to get everything except coriander and a half serving of chilli because I’m not as tough as I’d like to be.
I think I had only been waiting for about thirty seconds and my banh mi was ready to go – super quick service here.
It was delicious, however it could have had more of each filling (however, I took my partner back on the weekend and his was packed with fillings so that aspect might be a bit hit and miss). The bread was crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside – I think they had been baked not long before I arrived. The fillings were just as fresh with crisp salads and perfectly cooked chicken. Although I had asked for a half serve of chillies, it still packed a huge punch so no shortage of flavour there.
Onto the drink options. They had a few different types of bubble tea, but what I really was after was a ‘fruit shake’. You pick up to 5 different fruits, they blend them up with some ice and a spoonful of mysterious liquid which I assume was a sugar syrup or something similar. They put an awesome colourful plastic seal over the top (perfect for heading back to the office juggling multiple orders!) and give you a wide straw with a pointed end so when you’re ready to drink, you stab it through the plastic and off you go. I got strawberries, banana, lychees, passionfruit and apple in mine. Yum. It was really refreshing. I’m sure it would be very healthy if it weren’t for the sugar syrup. It was Friday, treats are allowed on Fridays!
The banh mi was $6, and the drink was also $6. However, if fruit shakes aren’t your thing they have a meal deal where you get a banh mi and a 375 ml can or bottle of water for a total of $8. Bargain!
There aren’t many seating options in store, just a bar and stools arrangement but it only had room for about three or four people so this is one to take back to the office or to enjoy down by the water at Yerrabi Pond.
Gungahlin is a bit far from my workplace to go there for lunch but it’s definitely a new weekend favourite for me. Fresh, delicious, cheap and quick – it’s a winner.
What: Saigon Fresh
Where: Gungahlin Village Shopping Centre (next to Best and Less)
Opening hours: 9.am-5pm (Mon-Thurs and Saturday), 9am-7pm (Friday), 10am-4pm (Sunday)