Top 5 must-try foods in HanoiUnder Blog, Eat, play, watch
Hanoi is a paradise of spectacular foods where you can find the most delicious dishes of Northern Vietnam gathering in this place. However, this huge number may make visitors confused as they don’t know which ones they should take first within only a few days in the city. This article may help you to solve that difficult question by introducing the top 5 quintessence foods of Hanoi.
1. Phở (Noodle soup)
Hanoi is proud to be the home town of this world-famous dish, so it is no doubt the city is the best place to enjoy Phở. From shift-shops on the smallest lanes to higher class restaurants could you see the dominance of this food as well as taste the most authentic Pho in Vietnam. The most two common varieties of Pho are Pho Bo and Pho Ga, which are rice noodles filled with soup from pig or chickens’ bones and beef tenderloin or beef brisket, and chicken wing or chicken thigh.
Besides the multinational brand Pho 24 with better service and higher levels of hygiene, Pho Bat Dan in the Old Quarter Area is the best place to get a hot bowl of Pho Bo. Although it is more crowded that people usually have to stand in line waiting for one’s turn, no air condition and shared tables, the taste of Pho here is far more delicious than that of any other shops.
2. Bún Thang
Another child of the capital city, Bun Thang is the most popular yet hidden fares in Hanoi. Similar to Pho, Bun is made of rice but its shape is cylindrical rather than flat shape of Pho. Even though Hanoi is its motherland, there are not so many shops may cater this food with the best quality but several ones inside Hanoi Old Quarter. Bun Thang is a harmonious combination of different ingredients to create a blended color between the yellow of sliced egg; the white of bun; the off-white of chicken and the green of onions and herbs.
Recommended places to try Bun Thang are Bun Thang Ba Duc on Cau Go Street and Bun Thang 31 Hang Khoai. Although they are both small-sized street vendors, the shops are always filled with a huge number of gourmets from the early morning until late.
3. Xôi Xéo
Xoi Xeo is amongst the most common and favorite breakfast of Hanoian; however, in some higher class restaurants which offer this food in a variety of choices, you may easily get full with a bowl of Xoi Xeo. The food is actually made of sticky rice topped with ground de-hulled mung bean and fried onion. Sometimes, it can be served with eggs, sausage, pate or steamed chicken breast on request.
Xoi Yen on Nguyen Huu Huan Street is the most favorite restaurant which specializes on Xôi Xéo where you may get the best of it. The prices may varies depending additional ingredients you want to add on your bowl. However, the maximum price is never higher than USD 3/ bowl.
4. Bánh Cuốn
There are several types of Banh Cuon originated from a few provinces in the North of Vietnam like Nam Dinh, Phu Ly or Thanh Tri. However, Hanoi’s Banh Cuon is always the most special one in term of the cooking process, the shape and the ingredients of the dish: ground pork, wood-ear and seasoning. Interestingly, you may have chance to see street chefs making Banh Cuon while you are enjoying so that the dish is keeping warm and maintain the best taste. Banh Cuon is served with nuoc mam, a mixture of fish sauce, sugar, lime and chili.
Similar to Pho 24, the chain of Banh Cuon Gia An restaurants are more hygiene with much better service but the price is only a little higher than street vendors while the taste is nothing less tasty in comparison.
5. Chả Cá
If you are a lover of Vietnam’s gastronomy, this name should sound familiar. Cha Ca is listed as one of the top 100 dishes you gotta try before you die by numerous cuisine forums and reliable tourism websites. Cha Ca is exquisitely grilled fish served with Bún, peanut, green onions, dulls and shrimp paste. The fish is carefully chosen so that there are not too many bones and then colored with turmeric for the delicious golden color.
Cha Ca La Vong on 14 Cha Ca Street is the oldest the most renowned restaurant served by the most traditionally styled chef that any Hanoians may easily guide you to. However, you may still try Cha Ca Thang Long at 21 – 31 Duong Thanh Street for a larger and more modern place to sit in.