Eat & Drink

Dong Phuong

14207 Chef Menteur Hwy, New Orleans, LA 70129, USA 70129

Restaurant Review

Why It's Essential

The leading restaurant in the New Orleans East Vietnamese community, Dong Phuong does it all: pho, a long menu of other Vietnamese dishes, and--most famously--banh mi, the Vietnamese poor boy sandwiches. They bake their own bread for that, even. And it's almost laughably inexpensive.


De and Huong Tran--who came to New Orleans from Vietnam in 1980--opened Dong Phuong in 1981. (The name means simply "east.") It was the first major restaurant in the Vietnamese enclave on Chef Menteur Highway past Michoud, in New Orleans East. From the outset the place became as distinguished for its baked goods as the food served at its table. When banh mi became popular Dong Phuong's bakery grew to be the definitive source of the French-style bread used to make it. Like the rest of New Orleans East, it was inundated by the Katrina flood. Dong Phuong and its neighbors came back startlingly quickly, giving us new respect for the tenacity and hard work of these people.

Dining Room

The bakery is near the entrance, giving customers an immediate aroma and visual appetizer. Here also is the take-out bahn mi counter, the busiest part of the restaurant. The dining room stretches back from there, a touch fancier than it was before the storm, but still on the utilitarian side.

For Best Results

The restaurant closes at 6 p.m. (earlier some days), so don't figure on your normal dinner time. The breakfast/lunch crowd is enormous, and starts at 8 a.m.

Bonus Information

Attitude 0
Environment 0
Hipness 1
Local Color 1
Service 0
Value 3
Wine 0