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Cheap Eats

The Bun Shop

“My mouth just died and went to heaven.”

Photo: Baynard Woods, License: N/A

Baynard Woods

“AHhhhhhhhhhrrrgghglglgl. YUM.” That was the initial email response of a City Paper Cheap Eater to his first trip to the Bun Shop (239 W. Read St., [410] 989-2033). Despite the fact that the location has previously seemed like one of those cursed spots of real estate nothing survives in, we sincerely hope that the Bun Shop’s extremely elegant and spacious digs remain around the corner from our Park Avenue headquarters. Because it really is one of the most gorgeous spots in town, with its gilded sign and gilt-edged furniture, which is made by the two owners, Minh Vo and Andrew Bui (“Comings & Goings,” Eats & Drinks, April 3). It is one of the few places that is really elegant and comfortable, with couches, small tables, and big, long communal tables. The only reason we worry is that it is probably expensive real estate to pay for with buns that average around $3 and Vietnamese coffee (the coffee operation wasn’t quite up and running yet on our visit). We ordered nearly everything on the menu for around $20 total. The curry puff ($3.50) was a delicious little samosa; the empanada ($2.50) reminded us of the lamentably late Max’s Empanadas; the chicken pasty was a handheld chicken pot pie ($3.75). They didn’t have the ham-and-gruyere ($3.75) on our visit, but another colleague said, “My mouth just died and went to heaven.” That was pretty much it on the savory side—and our only complaint is that they didn’t heat them up enough. A chicken pot pie should be hot. On the sweeter side, we had the pear-and-gruyere pastry ($3.50), the guava-and-cheese pastry ($2.75), and the rotiboy ($2.75). Both of the pastries had a perfect crust—though perhaps they could have used more filling. But the rotiboy, well, it sort of tasted like an Entenmann’s roll. Which some people like. So go to the Bun Shop, because we all want to keep eating there.

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