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Food in Vietnam 

The food is excellent, whether you buy it in a five-star hotel or from a corner pho (beef broth soup) stand.
There is a wide variety of food available, from quality fruits and vegetables to meats (familiar and not-so-familiar), poultry, fish, and tofu. The food is not generally spicy. Heavy use is made of fish sauce (nam pla). The “hot pots” are not to be missed. Nothing beats the fresh fish in the Mekong Delta or in river towns across the country.


There is an abundance of fresh vegetables and fruits available, so the menu choices are quite varied. One of my favorite dishes is tomatoes and fried tofu – simple, and very good.  Another is just a plate of mixed vegetables – chef’s choice.


Deep-fried foods are common, but not as prevalent as in Thailand. The most common way to cook foods is some form of stir-fry.


The French left some legacies that Westerners find most welcoming, namely baguettes, pastries, and real coffee. The Vietnamese have taken the coffee and made it their own, roasting it in the sun, and then serving it very strong with condensed sweetened milk. If you don’t care for the taste of canned milk, ask for fresh milk.


Bakeries and patisseries, rarely seen outside the former Indochina countries, are commonplace. Coffee shops are easy to find. 


In the large and mid-sized cities, it is relatively easy to find international foods such as Italian (decent pizzas), Chinese, and Thai. There are some of the ubiquitous fast food places, but not too many yet – the average person can’t afford them and most tourists avoid them.


Restaurants keep long hours – generally from 8 am(or earlier if they serve breakfast) to 10 or 11 pm, seven days a week. 


Restaurant meals tend to be quite reasonable and of excellent quality almost anywhere – even from the corner noodle shops. Make sure the place and the staff look clean and have a high turnover of diners, and then take a bit of care with what you eat – no raw foods, at least until you’ve been there awhile, and stick to the bottled, purified water. This applies even at the swankiest restaurants – the staff is hired from the local populace and they get the food and water from the same markets as the noodle shops do.

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Vietnam travel guide : Food in Vietnam - eating and drinking in Vietnam