Sunday, November 08, 2009

Ba Tu Trai Cay Ngon - Westminster (Little Saigon)

After picking up xi muoi (Vietnamese preserved plums) from Kum Lee (Kho Bo Mut) - Westminster (Little Saigon), Lan of Angry Asian Creations and I still had some time to kill. So we decided to look for some fresh mangosteens for her.

Ba Tu Trai Cay Ngon - Westminster (Little Saigon) 1

We had stopped at the nearby grocery store but couldn't find any fresh mangosteens. So I texted my friend, DP, who directed us toward several fresh fruit shops on the corner of Bolsa Avenue and Magnolia Street. There have been a few of these fruit shops cropping up lately in Little Saigon and the San Gabriel Valley, specializing in tropical fruit such as rambutans, jackfruit, and mangosteens. Selection and price seemed to be the same at each location.

Ba Tu Trai Cay Ngon - Westminster (Little Saigon) 2

We wandered into Thai Son Lo Banh Cuon - Westminster (Little Saigon), which now offered fresh fruit along with rice noodle rolls. (Delicious and cheap their sign says in Vietnamese.) They only had mangosteens in 2-lb bags so we then went next door to Ba Tu Trai Cay Ngon, which translates into "Auntie Four's Delicious Fruit." Here, we found a 1-lb bag for $4.99 a pound.

Ba Tu Trai Cay Ngon - Westminster (Little Saigon) 3

The prices at these tropical fruit shops are comparable with what I've seen at the grocery stores. I guess it's the variety available that lures people out?

I used to buy my tropical fruit from the back of a van that roved between Nem Nuong Ninh Hoa Vietnamese Restaurant - Rosemead and the strip mall where Quang Tran, Inc. - Rosemead is located. But I've heard that they've now opened up a shop in the San Gabriel Valley too...

Other fresh fruit shops:
Chi Ut Trai Cay - Rosemead
Thai Son Lo Banh Cuon - Westminster (Little Saigon)

1 year ago today, Shichimenchou (Japanese Turkey) Ramen.
2 years ago today, Messob Ethiopian Restaurant - Los Angeles (Little Ethiopia).


  1. wow i know this strip mall. I had a flashback of being in Vietnam while shopping here. If I recall, I think someone tried to see me Vietnamese lottery ticket, but that could've been my flashback. The setup and daily hustle and bustle is as close to shopping in Vn as anyone could get.

  2. What a coincidence! I saw some mangosteens at the 99 Ranch in Anaheim a few weeks ago. Was distracted and forgot to put some in my basket! Thanks for the list and photos of the fruit shops around town.

  3. David,
    This strip mall is such a pain to go in and out of, but the Banh Mi Che Cali here is so good. And all the other businesses around have pretty much everything. Someone probably did try to sell you a lottery ticket since there's always someone hawking something.

    I'm not sure how those fruit shops stay in business since I usually just buy fruit from the Asian grocery store.


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