Food is at the heart of Vietnamese culture and Vietnamese food is one of the most popular cuisines in the world as it mixes together a range of flavors and tastes. Each parts of the country has different tastes and style of food, but all are very delicious.
This list might be a resource and inspiration for your Vietnam holiday.
In the North
What list of Vietnamese cuisine would be started without Pho? This simple staple consisting of a salty broth, fresh rice noodles, a sprinkling of herbs and chicken or beef, features predominately in the local diet — and understandably so. It’s cheap, tasty, and widely available at all hours.
Pho has shown its position not only in Vietnamese cuisine but also world cuisine. Pho can be seen everywhere from street stalls to high-end restaurants. Some is served with chicken and some with beef. Fresh herbs, clear stock and soft noodles are 3 important factors to making an outstanding Pho.
Give it a test to some famous local store with just about 2,5 $ for a bowl of Pho:
– Pho Thin, 13 Lo Duc Str., Hai Ba Trung District, Hanoi, Vietnam.
– Pho Bat Dan, 49 Bat Dan Str., Hanoi, Vietnam.
2/ Bun Cha – Rice noodles with grilled pork
Bun Cha is one of the oldest favorites of Northern Vietnam cuisine. This dish is top choice of Vietnamese lunchtime food. Grilled chopped meat or normal grilled meat on charcoal stove is prepared with rice noodles and herbs all together is dipped in syrup-thick fish sauce.
You will not miss the chance to explore the dish that Mr. President Obama choose in his first night at Vietnam.
Address: Bun cha Lien Huong, 24 Le Van Huu Str., Hanoi, Vietnam.
Price: 3-4 $/ person.
3/ Cha Ca
Cha Ca usually serve as a large pan is put at the middle of table and filled with chunks of the grilled fish fillets, dill, and onions, surrounded by a plate of greens, roasted peanuts, rice vermicelli, scallions and a bowl of purple shrimp sauce with unique taste of shrimp paste that completes the flavor of this specialty. You may choose to eat Cha Ca with rice noodles and other additives and herbs separately or combine all ingredients in their bowl and then spreading soup in the pot.
The shrimp paste smell mingled with the sweetness of the fish, vegetables and fleshy smell of roasted peanuts can make an unforgettable gastronomical experience.
Address: Cha Ca Lang, 18 Lo Su, Hoan Kiem District, Inside E Central Hotel, Hanoi, Vietnam.
In the Middle
4/ Bun Bo Hue – Hue style beef noodles soup
If you are a soup lover then you will be pleased to learn that Bun Bo Hue is another classic Vietnamese dish with simple ingredients: rice noodle, beef and herbs. Whether North, South or Central, “Bun” also creates unique and specific dishes in each region. However, in Hue – center of the Middle part of Vietnam, they like Bun rather than other one because of style of “bun Hue”. Hue style not only is the elegant, sophisticated, precise dishes but also feel the spirit of the processor.
Address: 17-19 Ly Thuong Kiet Str., Hue City, Hue, Vietnam.
Price: 2-3 $/person.
5/ Banh Xeo – Sizzling pancake
Banh Xeo are giant savory pancakes that literally translate to sizzling cake because of the noise they make when they are being cooked. A good sizzling cake is a crispy crepe bulging with pork, shrimp, and bean sprouts, plus the garnish of fresh herbs that are characteristic of most authentic Vietnamese dishes.
To enjoy one like a local, cut it into manageable slices, roll it up in rice paper or lettuce leaves and dunk it in special sweet and sour fish sauce.
Address: Banh xeo Ba Duong, K280/23 Hoang Dieu Str., Da Nang, Vietnam.
Price: 2 -3 $/person.
6/ Banh Mi – Baguette
Vietnamese baguette sandwiches, called Banh Mi, have attracted a growing fan base around the word. The uniqueness of Banh Mi not only lies within the light and crispy baguette, but also the variation of flavors Vietnam fillings bring out the most amazing flavor.
This baguette sandwich filled with paté and freshly made omelet, grilled-pork and so many ingredients depend on your choice. You can find Banh Mi anywhere in Vietnam, but the best Banh Mi is in Hoi An, a beautiful ancient town of the Middle Vietnam.
Be prepared for long waiting lines of this popular Banh Mi store for both locals and tourists.
Address: Banh mi Phuong, 2B Phan Chau Trinh Str., Hoi An town, Quang Nam, Vietnam.
Price: 1,5-2$ / baguette.
In the South
7/ Com Tam – Broken rice
This simple meal, is one of the most popular dishes from South Vietnam at any time of the day. It is usually served grilled marinated pork chops, plus a mixture of thinly shredded pork and pork skin over broken rice. On top of the meat, there are several customary ingredients such as: finely sliced cucumber, tomato and pickled vegetables, along with prawn paste cake also known as steamed pork and egg custard or pork meatloaf with egg, fried egg, and grilled prawns.
As a dry dish, it would normally be served with a small bowl of fish sauces on the side.
Address: Com tam Ba Nghien, 84 Dang Van Ngu Str., Phu Nhuan District, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Price: 2-3$/ person.
8/ Lau Mam – Fish sauce hotpot
At present, Lau mam folk dish in the past hundred years – become a luxurious specialty in the South. Chau Doc fish sauce made from fresh-water fish, a kind of sweet- smelling and greasy fish, which must be as required to have a delicious Lau mam dish.
Substances to prepare for Lau mam, including fresh food-stuffs such as snake-head fish, “keo” fish, pork, peeled shrimps, eel, beef, and so on, accompanied with at least 10 kinds of vegetable, sometime amounting to 24 kinds of vegetable. They include water-lily, egg-plant, balsam-apple, straw mushroom, bean sprouts, chilly, etc.
When boiled, the flavors of the sauce, which is mixed with citronella, chilly, vegetables, fish, shrimp and meat, are very sweet-smelling. Lau mam roam is scoop out into bowls and served with soft noodle soup, simply but deliciously.
Address: Restaurant 13, 15 Ngo Duc Ke Str., District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Lau mam Da Ly, 89 Ba Thang Hai Str., Hung Loi, Ninh Kieu, Can Tho, Vietnam.
Price: 15-20$/ 1 hot pot for 2 persons.
9/ Banh Trang Nuong – Grilled rice cracker
Banh Trang is one of the most popular street foods in South Vietnam.
A mixture of pork, scallions, and red peppers are placed in the centre of the rice cracker. Next, a quail egg is broken and added to the mixture, which is followed by the cracker being placed on the grill. The egg cooks while the rice cracker is slightly tenderized by the flames. Once it is done, it’s removed from the heat, smothered in hot sauce and folded in half. The end product is a small, spicy and crispy treat.
Address: There’s no advice for this dish, because you can find it out on any streets in Ho Chi Minh city with cheap price (1$/person) and very delicious.