Did you know that Hanoian cuisine is distinctly different from the rest of Southeast Asia? Most Southeast Asian foods are spicy with bold flavors, but northern Vietnamese cuisine is light and balanced, combining flavors from many different ingredients.
On this page I’ll show and describe 12 restaurants and 3 street foods that offer some of the best of Hanoian cuisine, so that you know where to go to tickle your taste buds to the max 🙂
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Eating in Vietnam is generally cheap, but not all budget restaurants are created equal. With that in mind, here are some cheap eats that offer great tastiness for money.
Huong Viet, located in the Old Quarter, makes some of the best local Vietnamese Banh Mi sandwiches in Hanoi. They offer a variety of delicious spiced meat sandwiches, and also have an egg and cheese version for vegetarians.
Their avocado smoothie is blended with fresh fruits and is great for dessert, or you can just wait for the complimentary fruit and tea which they serve after your meal.
|Price range:||40K – 70K VND per meal (~$1.75 – $3.05)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 6:30 pm – 10 pm|
|More info:||Huong Viet’s website|
Coffee with whisked egg yolk – it may sound odd, but it’s delicious. Giang Café, located in the Old Quarter, has perfected this recipe to make it light-tasting and sweet, almost like a dessert.
This quaint little café fills up with locals who also enjoy this delicious drink, giving it a distinctly authentic feel and making it a good place to experience Hanoian culture.
|Price range:||15K – 35K VND per beverage (~0.65$ – $1.50)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 7 am – 10 pm|
|More info:||Giang Cafe’s Facebook page|
If you’re not limited to a tight budget, here are some reasonably priced restaurants in Hanoi that offer a great dining experience.
For local flavor, head towards the Home Hanoi, located on the fringes of the Old Quarter. They specialize in Vietnamese cuisine, and their roasted duck and deep-fried soft-shell crab are an absolute must-try.
Pair your meal with a choice of wine from their extensive wine-list, and take your time to enjoy your meal in this beautifully redecorated colonial villa.
|Price range:||100K – 300K VND per meal (~$4.40 – $13)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 11 am – 1:30 pm + 5 pm – 9: 30 pm|
|More info:||Home Hanoi’s Facebook page|
For authentic Italian pizza, head on over to Pizza 4P’s in the Hoan Kiem district. They make their cheese in-house at their cheese studio in Don Duong.
If you love cheese you’ll enjoy their ‘Burrata’ cheese, which is mozzarella mixed with fresh cream. You can add it on top of any pizza you order, or even to your salad or pasta dish.
The place does get busy, so it’s best to call ahead and reserve your table in advance.
|Price range:||150K – 300K VND (~$6.50 – $13)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 10 am – 10:30 pm|
|More info:||Pizza 4P’s Facebook page|
The Gourmet Corner
The Gourmet Corner is a surprisingly affordable fine-dining restaurant, featuring a scenic view from the 12th floor of the La Siesta Diamond hotel.
They have a wide selection of Vietnamese dishes, but their Bo Om Soi, or Beef on Hot Stones, is a must-try. It features Australian beef tenderloin served on hot stones in a clay pot.
Come between 16:00 to 18:00 and take advantage of their buy one free one cocktail deal, which you can enjoy while watching the sun set over Hanoi’s skyline.
|Price range:||100K – 350K VND for a main course (~4.40$ – $15.30)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 11:30 am – 10 pm|
|More info:||Gourmet Corner’s Facebook page|
If budget isn’t an issue and you just want to eat the best foods at the finest places, Hanoi is ready to oblige. Here’s a list of some of the best fine-dining places in the city.
Grandma’s Restaurant combines authentic Vietnamese cuisine with the ambience of fine-dining. It’s a beautiful restaurant that’s been thoughtfully designed with rustic furniture, mood lighting and elegant décor.
The menu features classic Vietnamese dishes such as the grilled beef in bamboo, traditional grilled ‘Lang’ fish, as well as deep-fried spring rolls. The dishes are carefully served and plated, so be sure to take a photo before diving in. 🙂
|Price range:||200K – 300K VND per meal (~$8.75 – $13)|
|Opening hours:||Mon- Sun: 11 am – 2 pm + 5 pm – 10 pm|
|More info:||Grandma Restaurant’s Facebook page|
If you’re feeling fancy, head over to Jacksons Steakhouse at Hai Ba Trung street, opposite Trang Tien Plaza. They offer a selection of quality imported steaks such as the New Zealand beef, Prime American Angus, and Australian Wagyu.
They’ve also got an excellent waiting staff who provide great service. Whether it’s prompt water refills or providing a charger for your phone – their staff are always happy to assist you.
|Price range:||300K – 700K VND per dish (~$13 – $30.60), more for prime beef|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 9:30 am – 12:30 am|
|More info:||Jacksons Steakhouse’s website|
Located at the lobby level of the JW Marriott Hotel, French Grill is a classy, fine-dining restaurant with an open kitchen. Sit kitchen-side and watch professional chefs in action, as they prepare your food in style in front of you.
You’ll find classic French dishes such as the foie gras and tuna tartare on the menu, but don’t ignore their steaks – the chef does a great job of cooking it perfectly to your liking.
|Price range:||550K – 950k VND for a main course (~$24 – $41)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 6 pm – 10:30 pm|
|More info:||French Grill’s Facebook page|
Must-Eat Street Food
A trip to Hanoi isn’t complete without tasting the best of its street food. Here’s a list of a few local delights, and where you can find them.
Pho, at Pho Gia Truyen
Pho is a chicken/beef based broth with rice noodles and thinly cut slices of beef or chicken. This Vietnamese staple is usually eaten for breakfast, but they’re so common now you can find them served all day in Hanoi.
For great Pho, head over to Pho Gia Truyen, which is a hole-in-the-wall restaurant in the Old Quarter. It’s a great way to experience the local culture, as it’s a popular place for tourists and locals alike.
|Price range:||40K – 50K VND (~$1.75 – $2.20)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 6 am – 10 am + 6 pm – 8:30 pm|
|More info:||Pho Gia Truyen’s TripAdvisor page|
Bun Cha, at Bun Cha Ta
Bun Cha is a local dish consisting of grilled pork on top of rice noodles. It’s usually served with herbs and special dipping sauce made from Vietnamese fish sauce and spices.
For the best Bun Cha, head on over to Bun Cha Ta also in the Old Quarter. The friendly English-speaking staff will guide you on how to properly season your Bun Cha, which they serve with a side of delicious spring rolls.
|Price range:||60K – 110K VND (~$2.60 – $4.80)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 7 am – 10 pm|
|More info:||Bun Cha Ta’s Facebook page|
Banh Cuon, at Banh Cuon Gia Truyen
Picture by Guilhem Vellut
Banh Cuon is steamed pork wrap, made from rice sheet rolled with ground pork and minced mushrooms. It’s topped with fried shallots and cilantro herb, and served with a special dipping sauce.
The best place to try the Banh Cuon is at the Ban Cuon Gia Truyen, which is more like a street food vendor than a stall. They have a basic menu of either chicken, pork, or shrimp, and if you sit close enough to the cook, you can watch as they make them in front of you.
|Price range:||35K – 50K VND (~$1.50 – $2.20)|
|Opening hours:||Mon – Sun: 10 am – 9 pm|
|More info:||Banh Cuon Gia Truyen’s TripAdvisor page|
Whether it’s Pho or Pizza, Hanoi caters to all cravings and budgets. You can strike a balance between local and international flavors, and enjoy a great culinary experience in this charming city.
P.S. If you’re having breakfast, you may also want to check out Hanoi’s Top 12 Things To Do to make an itinerary for the day. Or if you’re having dinner, have a look at The Ultimate Guide To Hanoi’s Nightlife to finish your day with a fun night out 🙂