Did this: Lady and the Pig’s beef 7 ways

Share Button

I’m very happy. I just passed a milestone, one that brought an unexpected sense of wonderment, and it reminded me that some happinesses and yearnings long relegated to memory are worth going back and looking for again. Why not? I’m talking about things big and small, even things like dinner.

I never thought I’d have beef seven ways again, and that was all OK. I discovered this traditional Vietnamese feast in Chinatown in the ’90s, and though it was the first thing I looked for when I got to Saigon in 1996, it never came my way. I remembered it for its freshness, for its light and smoky flavors, and for the discovery that a cuisine more known for herbs and noodles and fish sauce could revel in a feast of beef seven ways.

I’d forgotten all this. So the strength of my reaction when Mrs. Le of Pig and the Lady mentioned beef seven ways a few months ago took me by surprise.

What?! Beef seven ways? You mean bo bay mon? You make bo bay mon???

Mrs. Le stared at me. She nodded.

When?? When can you make bo bay mon??

Don’t worry, she said. I’ll do a popup. I’m sure.

Well, people, it was worth waiting for. Pig and the Lady and Mrs. Le, mom of Pig chef Andrew Le, staged a popup dinner of beef seven ways from Mrs. Le’s Vietnamese childhood this past weekend, naming it Lady and the Pig’s Bo Bay Mon. (In Vietnamese, bo = beef, bay = seven and mon = dish.) My happiness at reuniting with the memory was magnified by Mrs. Le’s happiness in presenting it. This was a milestone for her too. She suffered a stroke a year or so ago, affecting her walking and talking and strength, and after all these months of therapy and work and will, this was her comeback.

I’m very happy. I never thought bo bay mon could be this good.

Beef seven ways

Taste Table, Auahi Street in Kakaako last night.

Picture 1 of 16
6 comments
Soos808
Soos808

OMB (Oh My Beef or Oh My Buddha. You choose!) Nice piece, @nonstopmari. Red wine all the way! At the end I was just wrapping beef in leaves, I was so full. And Ted happily drank half my congee. Dan had TWO bowls. Soup lovers, both! Then we went to the Ox & they asked us what we wanted to eat. RIIIGHT... but we did takeout, & that place was CRANKING! 

Grant Shindo
Grant Shindo

I'm really bummed I missed this! So glad you were able to reconnect with your beef 7 ways after all this time! Looked amazing, I'm going to have to beg Mama Le tomorrow for an encore.

Annoddah_Dave
Annoddah_Dave

EO:  Based on the success of the dinner, were you given any indication as to future dinners?  In your mind, was the dinner faire enhanced more by having wine, beer, sake or Diet Coke?

nonstopmari
nonstopmari moderator

 @Grant Shindo ask!! i loved how fun it was, we were so busy breaking sausage and spooning onto chips, dipping rice paper, making rolls, making bowls of bun noodle tosses. u'd love the family style aspect

nonstopmari
nonstopmari moderator

 @Annoddah_Dave u like beef? i asked for a hana hou, we'll see. re libations, i'd say the zippy, vinegary salad did better w/ a ginjo sake, and then the richer grilled courses better w/ red wine or beer. i don't drink soda ;)