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What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

Seattle
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What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

Just wondering what food in Hanoi is can't miss in terms of westerners traveling there? I'm looking for food that isn't too exotic, not too risky, and very tasty. Too much to ask? Suggestions?

Sydney, Australia
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1. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

I did not find Vietnamese food too exotic. We tend to look for family run places where the locals eat for an authentic experience. Western food was good everywhere we tried.

In Hanoi we did make a special trip to KOTO. KOTO, or Know One Teach One, is a not for profit restaurant near the Temple of Literature run to help train and find employment for street kids. We had a great dinner there and I would describe the food as Vietnamese done in a modern style. The food was great, the service good modern interior a surprise. An added benefit was I came away feeling I had helped someone. The only disappointment was that I did not get to meet Jimmy, the founder, as he was in Hanoi checking on ex-students.

Hanoi Vietnam
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2. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

I think you need to go to "Quan An Ngon" on Pham Boi Chau st.

There you can try out a staggering number of street food dishes all under hygenic conditions and with marked prices.

After eating there you will have an idea what you are dealing with if anything takes your eye on the street.

Martin

Seattle
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3. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

Thanks for the helpful information!

So I guess I've heard mixed reviews about the taste of Vietnamese food. Obviously, most of the opinions are probably from westerners and I'm certainly not passing judgement on Vietnamese food.

I would like to know what type of foods westerners usually enjoy? I know about the pho and plan on getting plenty of that. What about stir fry dishes with rice and beef/chiken?

Any recommendations on where to eat or what to eat is very appreciated. Whats the best way to go about this?

Also, what are the "rules" in terms of a westerner not getting sick? I heard that the ice in Thailand is safe.. is this the case in Vietnam? What things should I avoid? Thanks!

Hanoi, Vietnam
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4. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

In Hanoi you'll want to try the Kebab sandwiches - really good submarines for 15000VND, and che (a delicious dessert made several different ways with tapioca, yogurt, fruit and candy pieces - either as a pudding or drink). The nice thing about all of these snacks is they're prepared right in front of you. I never found VN ice cream that I liked, but did find some excellent gelato there.

Hanoi is of course home to pho, but I preferred Bun Bo Hue noodles, and don't leave without trying Bun cha (bun is noodle in VN).

I consumed ice (always in my beer as I dislike warm beer) but always drank bottled water. VN minibars in hotels are inexpensive and usually filled with beer, soda and bottled water.

Victoria
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5. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

I also planned on having lots of pho in Vietnam... but, sadly, it didn't happen...

Being a cautious traveller, I wasn't game enough to enter a place which wasn't recommended by my Lonely Planet (which didn't turn out to be a great idea, since some of their recommendations simply sucked). I've heard that pho from the street is awesome, but when you see the meat that goes into their pho is sitting in 30 degree heat with flies crawling all over it, I can't bring myself to eating at that place, regardless of how many locals are enjoying their pho from there.

We didn't have any problems with the ice. I think as long as you are sensible and have iced drinks in places that look clean, you'll probably be okay.

Here are some Lonely Planet recommended restaurants in Hanoi which we tried:

- Bobby Chinn - don't bother. It's air-condiitoned and the place looks nice. But it's also expensive for what it is and the food is so incredibly average. Bordering on below average.

- KOTO - great place! Good food, comfortable setting, and for a good cause to boot! One of our faves in Vietnam.

- 69 Restaurant and Bar - good food and reasonable prices. The restaurant is also in a pretty Chinese style old house. Their beer wasn't cold enough though...

Overall, I actually prefer the Vietnamese food back in Australia. I think there's just better produce here than in Vietnam and the natural flavours of the quality produce actually comes through.

6. Re: What's the can't miss street food and restaurants in Hanoi?

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