A Vietnamese restaurant could be coming to the town centre near to Reading's only restaurant of the same cuisine.

Plans have been submitted to Reading Borough Council (RBC) for a new Vietnamese restaurant called Banh Mi QB in the same food village as Pho on King Street.

Ngoclinh Limited is seeking a licence to sell alcohol from the premises – Unit 8, The Village, 19-23 King Street – from 11am to 11pm.

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The council's licensing team said the unit has been a storage space for another unit for at least the last five years.

What is Banh Mi?

Banh Mi is a Vietnamese baguette, influenced by the French occupation of Vietnam.

The baguette was introduced to Vietnam by the French in the mid-19th century, during the Nguyen dynasty and became a staple food by the early 20th century.

During the 1950s, the first distinctly Vietnamese-style baguette was created in Saigon, called Banh Mi Sai Gon, which became a popular street food.
Banh Mi is filled with savoury ingredients such as chả lụa (pork sausage), coriander, cucumber, pickled carrots, and pickled daikon combined with condiments from French cuisine such as pâté, as well as red chili and mayonnaise.

Competing with Pho

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This will be the second attempt from a business to create a competitor to large Vietnamese chain Pho in Reading.

MumMum, the most recent attempt to open a new Vietnamese restaurant in the town centre lasted just six months.

Pho was Reading’s first Vietnamese restaurant, opening in 2017.

Global private equity firm TriSpan recently acquired a majority stake in Pho for £40 million, with British couple and founders Stephen and Juliette Wall remaining in executive roles.

The Walls launched the chain following a visit to Vietnam, opening the first branch in Clerkenwell in 2005. There are now more than 30 Pho eateries across the UK.

An earlier version of this article linked Unit 8 to Little Desssert Shop. This was inaccurate and the plans to do not relate to Little Dessert Shop which remains open. We apologise for this error and for any confusion caused.