Vietnamese typical food and drinks
Eating in Vietnam ranges from cheap noodle soups on the street for about 25 cents to a banquet in one of the luxury hotels. Vietnamese restaurants offer a broad selection of international fare including French, Italian, American, Indian, Chinese and Japanese.
The most typical Vietnamese food is Pho, the noodle soup with meat in it. It is very cheap at around 10,000d per bowl and usually well spiced. The main types are: Pho Bo with beef, Pho Bo Tai with rare beef fillets and Pho Ga with chicken. Com – steamed white rice is eaten for lunch and dinner. Nuoc Mam is the fermented fish sauce used to spice absolutely everything in Vietnam.
Seasonal fruits such as dragon fruit, rambutans and longans, fresh vegetables and local seafood are widely available, although supply can vary by region and season. All fruits and vegetables should be cooked or peeled before eaten.
Drinking water or ice is generally not recommended, even in the cities. Bottled water is cheap and readily available, so we recommend you don't take the risk.
Vietnam is a beer culture and Hanoi is the “bia hoi” capital of Vietnam. Bia hoi (draught beer) is one of things you should not be missed. It’s the most popular beverage throughout the country and the cheapest beer in the world, 4,000d a glass. For the higher quality, there are plenty of local as well as imported brands, such as 333, Carlsberg, Hanoi, Tiger, Saigon, LaRue, San Miguel and Heineken.
Beside beer, Vietnam is also a place to enjoy tea (Thai Nguyen tea or “Thai tea”), coffee (“Trung Nguyen coffee”) or something heavier, wine (“Nep Moi” – the Vietnamese whisky).
TIP: Tram phan tram! and Zho zho!
Remember these words well as all over Vietnam, glasses of beer or wine are raised and emptied, cries of “100%” or “bottoms up” and “cheers!” echo around the table.