What better way to learn about the local culture and people could there be than food?
We have prepared a list with "Must Try Hoi An" for you.
Banh Dap is a famous local snack in Cam Nam - Hoi An.
Its name means "smashed rice paper" which comes from the way of the production. It is made from two pieces of rice paper – the first piece is crispy, the second is wet (fresh). To join them together, they have to be smashed on to each other. It is served with a special fish sauce. Its unique texture from fried and fresh rice paper, makes it an unique culinary experience and a light snack for hot afternoons.
Where to try the Banh Dap:
Cross the Cam Nam bridge and find the restaurants at the river, they all serve this special dish. The best one is said to be "Quan An Ben Tre".
Price is approximately VND 10,000
Everyone travelling to Vietnam knows Phở – We love Pho!
But do you know the difference between Pho from North to South? Let Embrace share some local hints.
Originally from northern Vietnam, the story of Pho is connected with Vietnam’s history. Pho became popular in the north as a hearty soup eaten at breakfast by the workers.
After Vietnam’s partition in 1954 thousands of Vietnamese migrated to the South to escape communism in the North. That’s when the South adopted Pho and made it their own. The Pho from Saigon is said to be spicier and sweeter.
Pho in Hanoi: Northern style Pho has wider noodles and a very intense and delicate flavour due to its clear and simple broth. Beside the beef bone, anise, cloves and cinnamon combine into one subtle undertone flavour.
- Pho Bat Đan (49 Bat Dan street, Hoan Kiem district)
- Pho Thin (13 Lo Duc street, Hai Ba Trung district)
Pho in Saigon: The Southern Pho is often served in bigger bowls, with loads of garnish — mint, cilantro, rice paddy herb, bean sprouts, lime, chilli, basil and hoisin sauce, for instance. The broth is darker and the sweetness mainly comes from the sugar when seasoning.
- Pho Bo Vien Thap Cam, Nguyen Thai Binh, District 1
- Pho Hoa, 260C Pasteur Street, District 1
Pho in Hoi An: In Central Vietnam, Pho is a combination between sweet and salty with pickled vegetables served on the side. This makes Pho very unique, tasting very different from other regions.
- Pho Lien, 25 Le Loi Street, Hoi An
- Pho Tung, 51/7 Phan Chau Trinh Street, Hoi An
- Pho Xua, 35a Phan Chau Trinh Street, Hoi An
One of the signature dishes of Hoi Anese cuisine is Banh Xeo - Vietnamese traditional pancake. This dish is especially enjoyed by the locals during raining season, there is nothing better than a crispy and hot pancake on a cool and gray day.
Banh Xeo consists of two parts, the shell and the core. The main ingredient of the shell is rice flour, mixed with water and egg. The core includes pork, shrimp and bean sprouts. This dish is served with a special sauce (made from soy-sauce, peanuts, sesame and pig liver), rice paper, herbs and salad, cucumber and kimchi. To assess what is a delicious pancake, people often look at taste of the sauce, the crunchiness of the pancakes and the aromatic blend of ingredients in pancakes.
Here are 2 highly-commented restaurants for who want to try the classic Hoi An "Banh Xeo":
1. Banh Xeo Ba Le Well:
- Address: 45/51 Tran Hung Dao St., Hoi An
- Opening hour: 8:00- 22:00
- Price: 10,000 vnd per one pancake
Besides pancakes, the guests can also order other delicious dishes such as spring rolls or grilled meat.
2. Banh Xeo Hai Dao
- Address: 160 Ly Thai To St., Hoi An
- Opening hour: 7:00-22:00
- Price: 40,000 vnd per 3 pancakes
Similarly, Hai Dao also serves customers with other dishes like spring rolls or grilled meat and more.
If you are a big fan of Vietnamese cuisine, you must try the real ''Banh Mi" in Vietnam to experience its very rich but rustic flavor. Banh Mi is considered as the best street food in Vietnam.
In April 2011, "Banh Mi" became a noun that was added to the Oxford dictionary because people started to call this dish "Banh Mi" in a passionate way, not "Vietnamese baguette" or any other English name.
It is no exaggeration to say that Hoi An is Banh Mi paradise.
Here the Embrace favourite places:
- Banh Mi Phuong - "The best sandwich in the world"
+ Address: 2b Phan Chu Trinh St., Hoi An
+ Opening time: 6:30 - 21:30
+ Price: VND 15,000 – VND 25,000/ Banh Mi
This restaurant has a diverse menu with more than 20 choices for guests. You can choose one or more types of fillings such as Vietnamese typical patties, sausages, , bacon, jambon, sausages, chicken, fried eggs, ... to put into the Banh Mi.
- Madam Khanh Banh Mi or Banh Mi Queen - the oldest Hoi An Banh Mi
+ Address: 115 Tran Cao Van St., Hoi An
+ Opening time: 6:00 - 22:00
+ Price: VND 20,000/ Banh Mi
Not just because of the delicious and deep taste of the sauce, most tourists are impressed by the thoughtfulness and friendly welcome of Mrs. Khanh.
Cao Lau is the most famous dish in Hoi An. This noodle dish comes with BBQ pork slices, beansprouts, fresh herbs and a pork-based gravy.
The noodles used in Cao Lau are only made in Hoi An. Only water of a secret well in Cham island is used in the preparation of Cao Lau, giving the noodles a unique flavour and texture.
Cao Lau can be found in any of the restaurants, but you should try the real local dish at the Hoi An Central Market.
Price varies from VND 25,000 to VND 50,000
This delicate and delicious rice dumpling is filled with pork and shrimp and cooked in a steamer, before being carefully arranged on a plate, topped with fried shallots and served with a dipping sauce made from shrimp broth, chillies, lemon and sugar. White rose is another dish that is unique to Hoi An and sought after by Vietnamese and tourists alike.
This dish can be ordered in most restaurants in Hoi An, however Embrace suggests you try it at the restaurant which supplies most of the other places with their homemade dumplings:
Price from VND 20,000 depending on how many dumplings.
White Rose Restaurant
533 Hai Ba Trung Street, Hoi An.
Che comes in many different colors and flavours. Sometimes with fruit jelly, beans, sweet corn and even with fresh fruit.
Although it might not always have the most appealing look, don't let that deter you from trying some che.
Hoi An is especially famous for:
Vietnamese Sweet Corn Pudding - Chè Bắp
Made with sweet corn, glutinous rice, and is often topped with thick, syrupy coconut milk and toasted sesame seeds.
VND 8,000 to 15,000
Would you love to try some local street food, but don’t feel confident in navigating through the many street vendors and restaurants? Well we from Embrace Hospitality checked out the places for you and have found a lovely spot to try the local Chicken Rice.
Vietnamese tourists travelling to Hoi An never miss the chance to try the local Chicken Rice - Cơm gà
Cơm gà is flavoured and served with fresh herbs from the famous Tra Que vegetable village and sweet chilli sauce is an optional (but strongly recommended side condiment).
Com Ga Ba Minh, is local restaurant serving dishes that are as authentic any street vendor, with prices to match.
For a small plate VND 30,000
For a big plate VND 40,000
Com Ga Ba Minh, 20-22 Dao Duy Tu Street, Hoi An
What could be better than a hot pot in winter/raining season?
Hot pot is similar to the western "Fondue" but it comes in different styles. With seafood, meat, tofu, mushrooms, and many more.
Hot pot is not only delicious but it also unites people, it is slow food and in ideal dish during a party or a special event.
How is hot pot served?
The pot is put on the charcoal oven over a moderate heat in the center of the table. The fresh food is dipped in boiling pot during the meal. Usually it it comes with rice noodles, some hot pots are though eaten with egg noodles - in this case the noodles will be cook in the same pot.
Where to eat hot pot in Hoi An?
Almost all the local restaurant serve hot pot and it's difficult to choose one place, so just five it a try!
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