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The Early Word on Michael Huynh's Baorrito

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A month ago, Michael Bao Huynh quietly transformed his wife's noodle and sandwich shop Baoguette and Thao Noodle into Baorrito. The pioneer of banh mi looking to cash in on the Asian/Mexican trend should come as no surprise to anyone -- this is the same guy who threw together Mikey's Burger when everyone was bowing down to ground beef. Grand dame Gael Greene has already been and enjoyed, but where do the people stand? To the early word:

The Mostly Good News: Blog Nachos NY is mystified by the mishmash of cultures, "Switching out cilantro for basil provided a sweet flavor I don’t usually look for or want in my nacho plate, but these were pretty good. I’m also not a fan of cheese sauce, though it worked well with the Spicy Thai Basil Beef. And the jalapenos filled in the spice gap. These were good, but seriously we kept being surprised just how different these tasted from our usual nachos. I’m absolutely returning here as I’m curious if I can get the nachos with the other meat choices next time". [Nachos NY]

The "Tortilla FAIL" News: Yelper ZenFoodster E., a huge Huynh fan, wanted to like this place so badly, but then she got her tacos. "The hanger steak didn't have the sweetness & tanginess of most Korean marinated bulgogi in a regular "bimbimbap" and the kimchi would've been a nicer complement if there was more sourness and heat to its flavor. The fried quail egg and shitake mushrooms are a nice touch but I craved for more than just a dab of hot bean sauce smeared on top. Each taco was wrapped in only ONE medium-sized corn tortilla, which was not enough to hold all the juicy, Asian ingredients. So, they unacceptably fell apart almost immediately and had to be eaten with a fork!" [Yelp]

The Bad News: Over on MenuPages, commenter EddieHanValen also feels scorned by Huynh, "I've been a huge fan of Bao restaurants in the past. I absolutely love Baoguette. Yesterday I went to Baoguette forgetting that it had reopened as Baorrito. I figured I'd give it a try. I ordered the pulled pork burrito to go. The flavors were really sweet and unpleasant. The pulled pork in the burrito was almost all fat. Actual pork meat was non-exsistant. It just a big sweet fatty mess. I ended up feeling a little queasy afterwards. It was terrible and I won't be going back." [MenuPages]

The Good News: Chowhounder WestIndianArchie enjoyed his order, "I had a Chili Basil Baoritto - Ground beef with peppers, thai basil (aka cilantro?), lemon grass, and I think some mango salsa. Not too sure. It's like 1/3 beef, 1/3 veggies, 1/3 rice for about 7 bucks. Smaller than Chipotle, or the comparable burritos @ Taco King of Paquitos, but definitely really good on flavor. The hot sauce that accompanied it wasn't too hot." [CH]

The Meh News: Midtown Luncher Jane witnessed a spat in the open kitchen that provided entertainment to an otherwise boring meal, "Tried the lemongrass beef burrito for dinner. Meh, could be better. Michael Huynh was there too, yelling at the cook haha." [ML]
—Zachary Feldman


241 3rd Ave., New York, NY