Fast Casual Bun Mee Gives San Francisco a Bite of Vietnam

Watch this episode on

Ethnic fast-casual concepts have an advantage in today’s market. Consumers are now, more than ever, willing to discover new foods and flavor combinations, especially ones that are travel-influenced. Also, niches within the ethnic category are less likely to be oversaturated on a market-by-market basis compared to, say, better burger concepts.

In this episode of “Fast Casual Nation,” brought to you by the Foodable WebTV Network, we visit Bun Mee, a southeast Asia-influenced fast-casual based in San Francisco highlighting — what else? — the banh mi. Joined by Bun Mee founder Denise Tran, host Paul Barron explores what inspired Tran’s jump from attorney to restaurateur, what’s on the menu, and what flavors San Francisco consumers are favoring most.

Sakaya Kitchen — A Fine Dining Chef Takes on Asian Fast Casual

Watch this episode on

In this episode of Fast Casual Nation, we're checking out Sakaya Kitchen in Miami, a fast casual Asian concept owned by Richard Hales, who also helms the kitchen. The inspiration behind the restaurant came after Hales spent time backpacking — and cooking — in Asia. From pickling their vegetables to curing all meats, Sakaya is applying their ingredients in very sophisticated ways to blend the right balance of flavor. Watch the full episode to get an inside look on how a fine dining chef translates his experience and street cred into the fast casual playground.