Saturday, July 08, 2017

Tummy Tour: Ho Chi Minh (Saigon), Vietnam

Because food is the best reason to travel
I didn't bother to research things to do and places to see for our spontaneous trip to Vietnam but I found time to look up the must try food and the recommended places to eat! 

Mon Hue's Bun Bo Hue
Bun Bo Hue is a Vietnamese soup with vermicelli rice noodles and beef. This one costs 65,000vnd and I tried it when I arrived in Saigon, it was late already and nothing was open except Mon Hue a fastfood chain found all over Ho Chi Minh.
Dac Biet
Dac Biet or chicken noodles soup from the cafeteria near Chino's office in Lu van Lang.
25 Hoàng Sa, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam (it’s located very close to Lunch Lady)
Pho or noodles soup is one of the most popular Vietnamese food and we've tried to eat as much noodles as we can. We're actually full from eating from the Lunch Lady but it was right across and we can't pass up on this highly recommended place. The pho from Phở Phượng 25 is the best one that we tried, I can't forget how tasty the broth is and the big but soft beef strips. 
We found another good pho at a market across Bitexco Financial Tower. 

It's a foodcourt style restaurant where you can order food from different stores and pay at 1 cashier. At first they were wondering why we only ordered 1 noodle and then saw that we're sharing it. We have this feeling that we want to explain that we want to try as much food as we can that's why we only ordered one but didn't bother =)))
Pho Ha in Nguyen Hue
I've read that family run style restaurants are the best place to get good food so when we passed by this Pho place, we had to try it. There was a long line so we even waited for our turn.
We we're disappointed because the broth tastes like a watered down soup and we even bought 1 soup each! We're just happy that we're able to try eating on the street with these table and stools that reminds me of the study table that we use when we're younger.

2) Bahn Mi

37 Nguyễn Trãi, Ho Chi Minh City (though the address is 37, it’s right at Hem 39)
It was an adventure to look for Banh Mi 37 Nguyen Trai because it was inside a dark alley but it was worth it. 

Banh Mi 37 Nguyen Trai
Banh Mi is a Vietnamese word for bread or baguette. What makes each Banh Mi special is the fillings, for 37 Nguyen Trai, they use little grilled minced pork sliders. It costs 16,000vnd or $0.75 but it's the best that we've tasted. We actually bought it, stored it inside my bag, had dinner, went back to the hotel and remembered it 5hours later when we're unpacking. The sliders were still juicy and we regretted that we only bought 1 piece!
Cheesesteak bahn mi
We passed by another Banh Mi store and tried this yummy cheesesteak banh mi.
3) Grilled Meat and crab

Barbecue Garden
Chino's officemates recommended this grill restaurant so that we can take a break from vegetables and healthy food =)). We liked the ambience and even if it's outdoor, they have a mist system which makes the heat bearable.
Barbecue Garden
4) Dessert
We tried Bo Nuong Pho Mai, grilled beef with cheese and crab fried dumpling.

For dessert, we tried Banh flan or custard caramel. The first one is from the hotel breakfast buffet and Anhhong brand is from the grocery. Both are addicting!
 When in Vietnam, drink lots of coffee and Jasmine house tea!!

Bonus: Craft beer and Burger
Craft beer
A well lit alley led us to Pasture, a popular pub in Saigon where we tried the craft beer sampler. The most memorable ones are coffee + beer, jasmine + beer and Thai tea + beer combinations. It was a struggle to go down from the stairs after I finished a total of 2 glasses while Chino willingly finished the remaining 4. 
The 'Worst Burger' in Vietnam
By pure luck, after buying Kipling wallets from Behn Thanh Market, we stumbled up the 'Worst Burger' in Vietnam as featured in Adam Richman's Secret Eats. We shared 'The James Brown' a burger with USDA beef, bbq sauce, pulled smoke pork shoulder, cheddar cheese and coleslaw! 
Soul Burger
Chino and I like to binge watch from Travel channel and Asian Food Network so this was a fun surprise.

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