When Babycakes NYC closed its doors at the corner of 6th and Los Angeles Streets in early 2013, it seemed like a step back for what had been an intimate and quickly developing block. A new generation of businesses, however, have jump started the area’s upward trajectory with the latest addition being Hero Shop L.A. Offering a new and delicious take on Banh-Mi and rice bowls, Hero Shop provides a budget friendly dining option, while reactivating an important historic core corner.
While many banh-mi are characterized by large amounts of bread rather than filling, the same does not hold true for the sandwiches at Hero Shop, which are huge. On my recent visit I tried the BBQ Pork and Fatty Brisket Heroes. I also mixed things up a bit by sampling the Blood Sausage and Pepper bowl, which was excellent.
Tender and with a slight tang, the BBQ pork Hero is reminiscent of more traditional BBQ pork banh-mi options you might find at local Vietnamese establishments. The bread is perfect and does not overwhelm the sandwich as it can at more traditional banh mi joints. Additional ingredients include pate, cilantro, jalapenos, daikon & carrots, shaved onion, and mayo. Overall, the BBQ pork hero is a tasty take on a classic and is almost as good as my favorite item on the menu, the Fatty Brisket Hero.
Made with slow roasted angus beef brisket, daikon & carrots, shaved onions, cilantro, jalapenos, and mayo, the fatty brisket hero is – in a word – awesome. The beef is perfectly cooked, fatty (as promised) and flavorful. The beauty of this sandwich is its simplicity. The brisket is the star of the show and it doesn’t disappoint. This is a must try to banh-mi and brisket fans alike.
I did make a point to try one of the several rice bowls that appear on the menu and was immediately drawn to the blood sausage and peppers option. A clever take on a traditional sausage and pepper hero in the form of a rice bowl, the dish combines morcilla Spanish sausage, sautéed jalapeno peppers, cilantro, daikon, shaved onion, and a sous-vide egg in a fish sauce vinaigrette. The combination of the sautéed peppers and the vinaigrette really enhance the flavor of the sausage, especially when combined with the bed of coconut rice beneath. Flavorful and filling, the blood sausage bowl is a great alternative for those looking for something different.
Hero Shop L.A. is a great addition to the historic core and step forward for this evolving stretch of 6th street. Business hours are Monday-Saturday from 11 AM – 9 PM.
All photos below by Caviar