“Cuisine is both an art and a science: it is an art when it strives to bring about the realization of the true and the beautiful, called le Bon (the good) in the order of culinary ideas. As a science, it respects chemistry, physics, and natural history. Its axioms are called aphorism, its theorems recipes, and its philosophy gastronomy.” (Lucien Tendret)
Like all the other Southeast Asian countries, Vietnam is famous for smells and sizzling sounds of locals cooking a variety of food in the lively Viet streets. We can honestly say, and we do believe that traditional Vietnamese food is among the best in the world. It is always a great idea to combine your eating with the exploration of those streets stuffed and crammed with astonishing restaurants and food stalls with a wide variety of Viet food.
Based on our vast traveling experience, we bet that aromas and tastes of Vietnamese Cuisine will ever linger in your memories because this Viet food is just miraculous, fermented, sour, sweet, fragrant, invigorating, and fresh. When ingredients taste like themselves, you should understand that you are having Vietnamese food. The exploration of food streets and the dandy Viet cuisine will be an un-pho-getable experience for you. Before delving into the best food street debate, let us talk about a bit about the Viet cuisine, how you can describe it, and why it is among the best cuisines in the world.
How can you best describe Vietnamese Cuisine?
Vietnam is a country with varied landscapes, but there is one thing common in each and every landscape: the specialty of Vietnamese food, the yin, and yang. It is because Viet cuisine is all about a unique balance of fish sauce, sourness, sweetness, heat, ingredients, and the aromatics. You will get healthier food all across Vietnam, although the tastes will vary from one region to another. There is saltier flavor in the North, shifting to sweeter flavor in the South.
Why is Vietnamese Cuisine among the best cuisines in the world?
The answer is straightforward. You should know that a lot of labor, dedication, and interest goes into the making of one dish. Moreover, Viet food is balanced, and it covers all macronutrients that you need. You can even get food according to your very own diet plan, such as carbs from dandy rice/noodle dishes and protein from a variety of tasty meat dishes. And don’t forget about fresh vegetables and fruits.
Moreover, Vietnamese Cuisine is healthier because almost all the Vietnamese diet is healthy because of the healthy main ingredients, rice, vegetables, and fish. Cooking methods are also more robust, steaming, and stir-frying. So, classic taste, aroma, healthy dish ingredients, and healthy cooking methods are what the Viet cuisine is all about. In fact, Vietnam is foodie heaven, where restaurants and food vendors are at your service to serve you fresh and locally sourced Cuisine that will enrich your senses of smell and taste.
Top five Vietnamese street food that you must visit in Vietnam
Vietnamese Cuisine varies significantly from one region to another. It is influenced by China in the North and by Cambodia and French in the South. Despite the differences, Vietnamese Cuisine is delicious, simple, and uncomplicated. We have prepared a list of five Viet street food that will reinvigorate your traveling experience, and its menu will rejuvenate your tastebuds and find their way into the head and heart.
1. Pho Cam Chi: Cam Chi Street
This narrow street in Hanoi and is located approximately 500m northeast of Hanoi train station. It has a lot to offer if you are a food lover. This small neighborhood is packed with lots of little restaurants with lots of local eateries. This variety of restaurants can easily give you an option according to your own choice or wallet. There is also an adjoined Tong Duy Tan street that is also stuffed with suitable eating varieties. A variety of cheap but tasty food at the expense of just a few dollars isn’t a bad idea. Another important aspect is that it is also a historic place dated back to centuries ago. Hence, it is also an enticing place not only for food lovers but also for those who are intrigued by historical sites.
2. Duong Thuy Khue: Thuy Khue Road
Located on the southern bank of the largest freshwater lake of Hanoi, Tay Ho (the West Lake), is a popular destination for having un-pho-getable meals. Seafood is the specialty of this Viet food street with a mesmerizing lakeside setting. The competition between the touts of the restaurants is, however, fatiguing on occasions, but it is the kind of tradition here, and you must enjoy it. Again cheap but dandy Viet food will beckon your tastebuds, an experience you will love to relive again and again.
3. Truc Bach
Located 3km from central Hanoi and just across the bridge from the largest freshwater lake Tay Ho, Truc Bach is packed with a lot of restaurants crowded in an area of few hundred yards. A variety of local and Western food and the charismatic coffee shops in Truc Bach will definitely mesmerize you, and you will remain under this spell forever. It is also a place we feel like we can visit in Hanoi to have some peace and real quietness.
4. Pho Nghi Tam: Nghi Tam Street
Famous for the dog meat (thit cho), Pho Nghi Tam is stuffed with almost 60 restaurants in 1km distance. During the first half of the month, you will find this famous street empty. But, during the last days of the month, it will be crowded with locals. That is because Viet people believe that eating dog meat in the first half of the month brings bad luck; therefore, the street is deserted for a fortnight. However, you must be aware of “thit cho” which means dog meat.
5. Cho Am Thuc Ngoc Lam
Located across the largest river of Vietnam, the Song Hong (the Red River), this is one of the most interesting food streets not only among the locals but also among the visitors from all across the globe. This Viet food street is very famous for seafood that attracts like a powerful magnet if you are heavy on seafood. Again, it is necessary to keep an eye for “thit cho” which means dog meat. Enjoy the delicacy of dandy Viet food in the famous food street of Vietnam along with enjoying the mindboggling views of Chuong Duong and Long Bien bridges.
Is Vietnamese street food is safe to eat?
Many tourists ask about the safety of street food in Vietnam, which is a pertinent question that we want to address in this article. The answer is yes, Vietnamese street food is as safe as your home-cooked food is. The reason is the freshness of the food. However, it would be best if you used caution as well as common sense to pinpoint safe street food vendors and to avoid unwanted food, meat in particular.