Best places to eat in the old quarter of Hanoi will get your attention now because you haven’t known where the most traditional, unique flavor of street food is sold…and that’s it !
First of all, I want to introduce you the most well-known cuisine of Hanoi before entering to introduce you the best places to eat in Hanoi Old quarter. Anyone shouldn’t miss these special food when visiting the Old quarter of Hanoi.
I. Best street food in Hanoi old quarter
1. Phở- Noodle soup
History of Phở in Hanoi
- Phở first appeared in the 1920s,however, it developed incredibly fast. First, there was only beef noodle soup and it was hawked around the streets.
- During the 1940s, when there was a shortage of beef, people started making Phở with chicken as they had become addicted to it.
- And now Phở is so popular that almost no street in Hanoi is without a Phở restaurant.
- In some areas, there are even 3-4 restaurants, from luxurious to simple ones inside alleys, but not every restaurant can satisfy the strict requirements of Hanoian gourmets, who eat Phở every morning or late at night during the four seasons.
How is a good bowl of Phở ?
A good bowl of Phở first requires the flavor of soup, which comes from cooking the ox bones, not from seasoning. Noodles must be soft and plastic. Next, brown beef is dipped into the hot soup, and finally spices, including onion and “thơm” vegetable. The southerners love to eat Phở with various types of vegetables, but Hanoians do not eat it that way.
To appreciate Phở properly
You should enjoy it in restaurants with the atmosphere of people going in and out, the sound of bowls, chop sticks and knives, and the passionate faces.
Some types of Phở noodle soups in Hanoi:
- Phở bò tái (rare beef), Phở bò chín (well done beef), Phở bò nạm gầu (beef), Phở bò sốt vang (beef and tomato), Phở gà (chicken).
Phở is the delicious speciality food of Hanoi. In Vietnam you can find Phở everywhere, but even some tens of km away from Hanoi, Phở is no longer so delicious.
- In addition to Phở made from beef and from chicken, there are other types of local Phở like Phở thịt vịt (duck meat), Phở thịt lợn (pork), Phở chua, Phở cuốn etc., but only Phở- noodle soup made in Hanoi has the special attraction that is found nowhere else in Vietnam. It is, indeed, “a feature of Hanoi”.
2. Bún chả- Grilled pork with noodles
Bún Chả covers noodles, sauce, grilled pork, green papaya and vegetables. If one of that materials is missed, it can’t be Bún Chả with distinct flavor anymore
The way of eating Bún chả:
- Using your chopsticks to take noodle to dip into a small bowl of sauce made with a little bit sugar, chili, garlic and papaya. Grilled pork is in the bowl of the sauce.
- The dish is served with fresh vegetables.
Bún Cha is no less important than Phở to every Hanoian and there are also many Bún chả restaurants on each old street. In Hanoi, out of the old quarter Bún chả is much sold to everyone for their dinner than Phở is.
3. Bánh mì- Vietnamese sandwich
“Bánh mỳ” is one of French bakeries. It has become a favorite food for Vietnamese people.
History of Bánh Mì
- The Vietnamese sandwich, sometimes called a “bánh mì sandwich”, is a product of French colonialism in Indochina, combining ingredients from the French (baguettes, pâté, jalapeño, and mayonnaise) with native Vietnamese ingredients, such as coriander, cucumber, and pickled carrots and daikon.
- By the 1950s, it was sold in its modern form by street vendors in Vietnam. Vietnamese communities in France began selling it in the 1950s as well.
4. Chả Cá Lã Vọng
Fish and vegetables are fried on hot pan and eaten with Bún noodles, peanuts and sauce.
This food is very famous in Hanoi
5. Cháo sườn – Rice porridge with pork spare ribs
A Liquid soup from rice is cooked with pork spare ribs creates a speciality flavour of Cháo sườn.
In the winter, sitting in some corners of alleys or small house in the old quarter to handle a warm bowl of cháo sườn will bring you an appetite feeling
6. Bánh cốm (Green rice cake)
Inside this cake is sweet green bean. This cake is one of the offerings that groom’s family brings to bride’s family at their engagement ceremony.
7. Bánh cuốn
Bánh Cuốn is made with pork and mushroom inside them. The dish are eaten with sauce and vegetables.
Bánh cuốn is white and clear and as thin as paper, sticky and aromatic.
8. Bánh trôi nóng (Warm sweet soup with sticky rice cake)
Two sticky rice cakes with green bean and black sesame inside them. Hot soup with peanuts and ginger or coconut.
II. Best places to eat in Hanoi, Old quarter
Some must-eat food places while you are visiting Hanoi
Noodle soup with chicken or beef. You can find this food everywhere
These addresses are worth being the best places to eat in Hanoi and the old quarter
- Phở Bát Đàn at 49 Bát Đàn street in the old quarter of Hanoi, Hoan Kiem district
- Phở Thìn at 13 Lò Đúc, has been known for more than 30 years
- Phở vui ( Vui means happy) at 25 Hàng Giầy street
- Phở sướng at 24 Trung Yên alley, Đinh Liệt street
- Phở 10 Lý Quốc Sư at 10 Lý Quốc Sư street
2. Chả Cá Lã Vọng
- Chả Cá Lã Vọng restaurant at No. 14, on Chả Cá street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi.
3. Bún chả Grilled pork with noodles
- Bún chả Đắc Kim Restaurant at No. 1, Hàng Mành street in the Old Quarter of Hanoi
The restaurant is known by almost of people because the dish is made cleverly and carefully at the first step of preparing material
This restaurant is fresh and food is served quickly
4. Bánh Cuốn (steamed rice cake)
Come to Thanh Vân Traditional Steamed Rice Cake Restaurant
- Address: 12 Hàng gà
5. Bún bò Nam Bộ (beef noodles of southern style)
Beef, noodles, vegetables, peanuts and fried onion.
No. 67, Hàng Điếu street.
Price : 30.000 Vnd – 55.000 Vnd
6. Bánh gối (pillow shaped cakes)
No. 52, Lý Quốc Sư street, next to St Joseph’s cathedral.
7. Bánh tôm Hồ Tây (prawn pancake)
Prawn pancake at the restaurant by the West Lake. It’s eaten with sauce, green papaya and vegetables.
- Restaurant on Thanh Niên street, the West Lake.
8. Bánh xèo
- Address: 22 Hàng Bồ, Hoàn Kiếm district
9. Cháo sườn
- Address: 4A Hàng Vải street
Price : 40.000 Vnd/ bowl ( US $2)
10. Sweet soup
- Address: 93 Hàng Bạc street, this shop is famous for sweet soup for almost 30 years
Above I have introduced you the best food and especially the best places to eat in Hanoi, Old quarter. I hope that when you come to Hanoi on someday, you will have enough time or give yourself a chance to taste them. Don’t waste your time for unreal food in Hanoi !