The cuisine of Hoi An typically utilizes fresh fruit and vegetables grown in the surrounding farmlands. Local people, international travelers and foodies across Vietnam appreciate the raw flavors, tasty herbs and fresh spices typically used in Hoi An dishes.
From signature specialties like pork noodle soup and spiced rice, to modern fusion cuisine, Hoi An has all the ingredients needed to satisfy any traveler’s palate.
Cao Lau Noodles
Cao lau is the most famous specialty dish in Hoi An. Thick, wide noodles (resembling Japanese udon, for the foodies out there) are stewed into a traditional pork or seafood broth before being topped with fresh herbs and Chinese-style wantons. No visit here will be complete without sitting down to enjoy this signature soup at least once during your stay.
Banh Mi Sandwich
Banh mi is often called the classic Vietnamese sandwich. This tasty snack includes a meat of your choice, pickled vegetables, pate and salad on a freshly baked baguette-style break roll. While this dish is eaten across the country, travelers and locals agree that Hoi An’s street stalls and restaurants serve up some of the best banh mi in Vietnam.
White Rose Dumplings
White rose dumplings are another snack favored by foodies in Hoi An. These famous rice-dough dumplings are prepared with minced shrimp and local spices. Though they are served at many restaurants across the city, they are mainly supplied by one family who holds the secret recipe.
Make sure to bring your camera to snap a picture of the delicate, rose-shaped dumplings before you dig in.
Travelers will be faced with plenty of options when searching for the perfect spot at which to enjoy a meal in Hoi An. For your convenience, the Asia Highlights team has carefully selected the following restaurants, taking account of the extraordinary food, atmosphere, and service they provide.
Morning Glory has a reputation as a favorite of tourists in Hoi An, and for good reason. This elegant restaurant offers reliable yet delicious versions of traditional Vietnamese dishes prepared by a celebrated chef, Ms. Vy, who is preparing to open several international branches in the near future.
Enjoy a fun, comfortable atmosphere and an exciting glimpse into the open kitchen as skilled cooks prepare fresh, heavenly dishes.
At Morning Glory, guests can enjoy a varied breakfast menu that includes Hoi An style waffles, Vietnamese egg sandwiches, pho and sticky rice.
For those choosing to dine at lunch or dinner time, first select a tasty appetizer such as the famous white rose dumplings, locally-sourced shrimp skewers or a nourishing soup. For your main course, try the cao lau noodles, pork belly with caramel sauce, or any of the fresh fish entrees. (Morning Glory Location: 106 Nguyễn Thái Họ)
Mango Mango is a treat for foodies eager to sample some of the best fusion cuisine available in Vietnam. Founded by notable American Vietnamese chef Duc Tran, this restaurant serves up unique, tasty dishes and craft cocktails to hundreds of guests every night.
The restaurant is situated in the Old Town, and guests can enjoy a gorgeous view of the river and city skyline while they dine, as well as a live jazz band.
As an appetizer, try the red snapper fried tempura-style, crispy shrimp rolls, or sweet potato tortillas. When choosing a main course, try the seafood pasta served over thick rice noodles, prawns, or duck confit. Enjoy homemade ice cream with fresh fruit for dessert. (Mango Mango Location: 45 Nguyễn Phúc Chu)
White Lotus offers guests a delightful dining experience in a clean, peaceful environment. With friendly staff and excellent service, it is known as catering for travelers, serving western food options as well as less-spicy classic Vietnamese dishes.
Choose a set menu and enjoy a three-course meal including dishes like signature spring rolls or marinated fish, pork, or beef. The seafood platter, stuffed squid and green papaya salad are also among guests’ favorites.
Not only does White Lotus serve up some of the most delicious food in Hoi An, it is also a subsidiary of the Australian non-profit charity organization Project Indochina. All the proceeds from the restaurant go towards improving the lives of disadvantaged individuals in Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand. (White Lotus Location: 11 Phan Boi Chau St.)