After writing a few post of Thailand’s travel and food, I’m back with Vietnam’s culinary. LOLZ~! So the place I’d like to introduce in today’s posting can be considered as one of the most hip restaurant in Ho Chi Minh. Not only they are popular with the locals, they are popular with foreigners as well. You can see a lot of locals and foreigners coming here, having a meal, chit chatting while having a glass of beer in their hands. The place itself is not really big, but it definitely sells good food and has a good atmosphere, maybe that’s the reason why everyone is coming to this place to hang out.
It’s located in district 1, with the exact address of 21 Han Thuyen, Ben Nghe, Quan 1, Ho Chi Minh. It’s walking distance from Diamond Plaza, Vincom TTM, Notre Dame Cathedral, and some of the tourist attraction nearby, so it really a easily reachable place, location wise. This might be one of so many reasons why there’s a lot of customers in this restaurant.
This place opens everyday from 7.30 AM to 11 PM, so yes, if you prefer to have breakfast outside of your hotel, or if you prefer to have brunch, you can definitely come down to this place to have one. This place did not open during public holiday though, so before coming down here, you might want to check that that day is not Vietnam’s national holiday, otherwise you’ll come down for nothing.
They basically sells Vietnamese menu, and they have breakfast menu, lunches set menu and ala carte menu variations you can choose to have. Aside, they also have their special menu, which is not available all the time but just within a certain time of period which you might want to try.
I ordered quite a few of their basic menus to try out and here’s what I’ve had:
Fresh Chicken Rolls with Avocado, Brown Rices and Spicy Peanut Dip
The first menu coming out for my appetizer is the fresh chicken roll, the only reason I ordered it with chicken is because I choose a seafood roll on the next appetizer menu, which I’ll elaborate more later on. You can’t leave Vietnam without trying out their fresh spring roll, just like pho, fresh spring roll can be considered as one of their signature menu. Though it looked nice and being wrapped beautifully (I’m not really good at taking photos, so it might not look like it), I must say the taste is average. The peanut sauce is really nice though, since here is one of the few place where I find the peanut dipping sauce is kind of spicy. But when you’re looking for something simple and not greasy meal with a clean taste, you can considered on this menu.
Fried Spring Roll with Crab, Prawn and Glass Noodle
If the fresh spring roll is too bland, but still considerable if you’re looking for a clean taste food. The fried spring roll is average in another way. Though the crispiness of the skin can be considered as good, but there’s something missing with the fillings. I think it might be the crab meat taste which ruined the taste. Because it feels nice until I bite the crab meat part, then it started to feel strange, and I decided not to finish the menu up. Again, the spring roll sauce which taste sour and spicy is superb though.
Fishcake Rice Noodle (Pho)
So this menu is one of the menu being mentioned in the special menu which they only offer for a certain period of time. Though I don’t like fish, but I’m a big fan of fish cake and fish ball, so when I saw the fish cake rice noodle, which I don’t normally find in the menu in Vietnam restaurant, I decided to give it a try. The moment it is being served in front of me, I was so excited because it smells really good. But, when I take one sip of the soup, I was shocked and disappointed. The soup taste really bad. It reeks of the fish smell. So if you’re the type of people that just like me, who loves to eat fish ball and fish cake but hates fish dishes other than that. Then this one is definitely not recommended for you.
Beef Rice Noodle (Pho)
I almost gave up on this restaurant, and keep wondering why people loves to come to this restaurant aside from the good atmosphere. That’s when the beef rice noodle is being served right in front of me. It smells really good, as good as the fish cake rice noodle, which makes me worried. Since the fish cake rice noodle smells really good, but taste really bad. I wonder whether this will be another example of the fish cake rice noodle. But, my worries quickly vanishes when I tried the first spoon of the rice noodle. The rice noodle is cooked just nice and the beef meat is slightly under cooked just how I like it. And what’s important the soup taste really rich, but not too salty, in a good way. The Beef Rice Noodle (Pho) I’ve had in this restaurant can be considered as one of the best pho I’ve had in Ho Chi Minh City. This menu is highly recommended.
Other than the menu I’ve tried above, I was planning to try their Banh My (Vietnam style sandwich) as well, since their Banh My is considered as one of their signature menu as well, but since I feel super full, I decided to keep it for my next visit~!
Overall, this place is a really good place to hang out and chill out, either you’re coming alone or you’re with your group of friends or family. There’s a lot of travelers coming down to this place, alone or not, to chill out. So, if you’re a social butterfly, you might be able to make new connection and meet new people in this place.
What do you have for lunch today?
I love to travel and eat!! I'm a freelance Korean English Chinese Bahasa Indonesia interpreter, who love to blog and write. I worked in a plastic surgery hospital in Korea for 5 years before pursuing my interpreting and writing jobs. My previous blog on plastic surgery (which has been permanently closed down T-T) has been published in a book.