Street Dining in Hanoi

Hanoi Street FoodThe single most common feature of Hanoi is the street side eateries.  I really can’t call most of them cafes because the majority of them are made up of three main components:  plastic stackable stools, a burner and a large pot.  That’s the basic set up, then some will have a few tables to go with the stools and maybe a cooler and something to hang a duck or two from.  In the old quarter of Hanoi, there is probably 5 or so of these places on every block, seriously, every block.

I woke up around sunrise one morning a saw how mobile these restaurants are.  Several women were walking to their spot on the sidewalk with their entire restaurant contained in two baskets on either side of  bamboo stick slung over their shoulder.Street Food | Hanoi, Vietnam

Street Food | Hanoi, VietnamThe food you can get here on the street is nearly limitless, but it seemed pho (pronounced Fuhr) and bun cha were the most popular.  Most of you I’m sure are familiar with pho.  Bun Cha is a soup of meatballs and pork in a fish based broth served with rice noodles and chilis.  The way I just described it probably sounds awful, but it’s really fantastic, it has kind of a sweet, sour, salty, spicy thing going on all at once.  Vietnamese food rocks.  More posts to come from Hanoi, stay tuned…Street Food | Hanoi, Vietnam Street Food | Hanoi, Vietnam


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7 Responses to Street Dining in Hanoi

  1. I loved eating in Vietnam – Hanoi especially. A walking tour we took (Hidden Hanoi – I recommend it) explained that these vendors swap out their spot during the day, so it might be Pho in the morning and then a grill spot later and then a Bun Cha place even later. Like a rotating taste sensation!!

    • Beau says:

      Hi Gillian, thanks for the tip. It’s interesting how much of daily life revolves around the food here.

  2. Marcia Lepley says:

    I just re-watched an Anthony Bourdain TV show in which he declares his intent to move to Viet Nam at some point. And years ago when I saw him at a book signing, he mentioned that Viet Nam was his favorite country of those he’d visited, extolling the food.

    • Beau says:

      Hi Marcia!! Thanks for commenting. Yes, I’ve heard that he likes Vietnam. We’re A.B. super fans… does he sign his books Anthony or Tony?

  3. Mary says:

    I, too, loved eating on the streets of Hanoi. It didn’t matter what time of day it was, there was always someone ready to serve. Fabulous.

    Your pictures are beautiful.

  4. Norma Wilson says:

    Cool post. Thanks. Reminds me of preschool lunch setup. Later we’ll have art. Then naptime. 🙂 That one woman really has the marketing, signage, display thing down, doesn’t she?