The Hi-Pointe Drive-In has opened to lots of traffic. Located where Naugles of blessed memory was, on McCausland, just south of the movie theater of the same name, and run by the Sugarfire Smokehouse gang, it has been an immediate Hot Spot. No, there’s no drive-through. And there are certainly no car-hops, which is what drive-ins were really all about back in the day.
A 9 p.m. visit (and a parking place) gave me a first look. And a good sandwich. The grilled salmon banh mi turned out to be a tasty, if rather messy, choice.
The salmon is grilled to order, and layered on a bun from Fazio’s. It’s not the traditional French bread (which in Vietnam is more like the New Orleans version of French bread, crisp outside, tender inside), but that does make it a little easier to eat. The greens are lettuce and cilantro, the pickled vegetables are housemade, and radishes add crunch. Love the mango-chili mayonnaise, a little kick and occasionally a slightly bigger push of heat. It’s just hard to eat without the sandwich disassembling itself as gravity takes its immense toll. The only possible option besides using a fork is to cut it in half and use one’s hands as a wall against the ingredients. Just don’t expect the same flavor profile as one finds in the banh mi from a Vietnamese restaurant.
Bonus bite: The fries are fresh and full of potato flavor. If you’re looking for fries that are all very crisp, that’s not these, but of their kind they’re excellent.
Lunch and Dinner daily
Credit cards: Yes
Wheelchair access: Good
Sandwiches, etc.: $6-$11