KevinEats: Ginger Deli in Ann Arbor
E. Liberty St. is quickly becoming a hub for trendy Asian eats near campus, with Slurping Turtle and Tomukun Korean Barbecue opening up recently and joining the already-present TK Wu and original Tomukun. Now we can add another name to the list: Ginger Deli. I first noticed Ginger Deli had opened at the corner of E. Liberty and Division when I was on my way to a group lunch at Mani Osteria. Intrigued by the long line outside the window counter, I decided to come back a few days later for lunch and yet another time with Clover.
The concept can best be described as “takeaway Vietnamese food.” There is no real seating at Ginger Deli, only a couple tables on the sidewalk and a small counter by the walk-up window counter where you place your food order. When we went, they were still operating on a limited menu and in the process of easing into full service. The only banh mis available were the chicken and pork ones, which were good but small. The employees were eager to proffer that all the bread was baked in-house daily. Clover and I are both fans of pho, and I was excited to see that I’d now have a pho option for lunch within reasonable walking distance of the medical campus. Unfortunately, the pho was underwhelming due to a combination of tough beef and overcooked noodles that lacked sufficient bounce/chewiness/elasticity and tended to just fall apart.
However, I will definitely go back to Ginger for lunch and it’s for two reasons: the summer rolls and the “Snow-mazing.” The summer rolls are light and refreshing, packed with mint and veggies and shrimp and come with a spicy peanut dipping sauce that I really liked (disclaimer: it’s not actually that spicy at all). For me, four summer rolls would be a perfectly satisfying lunch! The “Snow-mazing” (an in-house name for the dessert) is a really interesting frozen, shaved dessert that’s lighter than ice cream but heavier than shaved ice. I’d recommend going with the Asian flavors like ginger, sweet red bean, or taro and adding condensed milk on top for a unique and delicious experience. Fittingly, the ginger flavor in particular was spectacular.
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