Embark on a culinary journey through the vibrant streets and narrow alleys of Hanoi’s Old Quarter, where the rich flavors of Vietnamese cuisine come alive. This bustling district is renowned for its top ten famous foods that have captured the hearts and taste buds of locals and visitors alike. From fragrant snail noodle soups to savory Tan-style chicken noodles, and irresistible sweet and savory fried doughnuts, the Old Quarter is a treasure trove of culinary wonders.
Satisfy your sweet tooth with the crunchy and flavorful fried doughnuts, both sweet and savory, and cool off with the refreshing black jelly dessert and the comforting sweetness of sweet rice with bean paste. Join us as we uncover the dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter and the recommended addresses and hidden gems that make Hanoi’s Old Quarter a must-visit destination for food enthusiasts seeking an unforgettable culinary adventure.

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Mi Van Than 

The standout feature of Mi Van Than noodles is the broth. Similar to beef phở, the broth used for Mi Van Than noodles has its own distinct and aromatic fragrance. In fact, if there’s a Mi Van Than noodle vendor nearby, you can catch a whiff of its enticing aroma just by walking a few houses down. The broth is rich, clear, and infused with the flavors of shrimp and chives. The noodles are cooked to perfection, offering a delightful chewiness and a hint of egg flavor.

The plump and juicy shrimp, generous slices of char siu, and aromatic and well-seasoned dumplings complete the symphony of flavors that make this dish truly delicious. Here are some recommended addresses for enjoying Mi Van Than noodles in the Old Quarter:

– Mi Van Than 16 Hang Bo (intersection of Hang Bo and Hang Can), Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Mi Van Than Phuong Beo: No. 9 Hang Chieu, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Gia Phuc Kien Noodles: No. 116 Tran Nhat Duat, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Hang Chieu Mi Van Than: No. 54 Hang Chieu, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Beef Phở

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi's Old quarter
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

When it comes to delicious dishes in the Old Quarter, one cannot overlook the beef phở vendors. Phở Bo Hanoi, renowned throughout the capital, is considered the quintessential Vietnamese dish.

 A bowl of beef phở is a harmonious blend of various elements, meticulously prepared. The broth is simmered for hours with bone, enhanced with dried shallots and grilled ginger for an aromatic touch. Essential spices such as star anise and cinnamon are added in measured amounts to enhance the distinct beef flavor without overpowering it.

 A hearty bowl of phở features tender white rice noodles, rare beef slices that turn a vibrant red when dipped in the broth, well-cooked beef chunks, and a garnish of scallions and onions. 

The flavorful broth, enriched with a touch of garlic vinegar and chili sauce, elevates the dish to sublime levels. This combination creates a delectable street food experience in the heart of the Old Quarter. Here are some recommended addresses for delicious beef phở in the Old Quarter:

– Phở Bat Dan: No. 49 Bat Dan, Cua Dong, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Phở Khoi: No. 50C Hang Vai, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Phở Cuong: No. 23 Hang Muoi, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Old Quarter Pate Baguette:

The baguette is a familiar food item among the residents of the Old Quarter. Its compact size, portability, delectable flavors, and affordable price make it a favorite choice for breakfast, lunch, dinner, or even a late-night snack. 

Unlike the various types of baguettes with multiple fillings and sauces available today, the traditional Old Quarter baguette takes diners back to the “old” flavors. The baguette consists of simple ingredients: butter, pate, pork slices, red sausages, and shredded pork floss, served with pickles. 

Some places sprinkle additional spices to enhance the flavors, adhering to the nostalgic style of the past. 

The most crucial element here is the pate, which must be made to perfection. Carefully crafted with rich flavors of liver, black pepper, and dried shallots, the pate is exceptionally smooth and creamy, avoiding any dry or crumbly texture. 

The baguette is always served warm with a crispy crust. A single bite reveals the harmonious combination of flavors, leaving a delightful and satisfying taste. Here are some recommended addresses for delicious pate baguettes in the Old Quarter:

– Banh Mi Lan Ong: No. 20 Cha Ca, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Banh Mi Co Hien: No. 76 Hang Giay, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Banh Mi Ba Dan: No. 34 Lo Su, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi

– Banh Mi Dan To: No. 32 Tran Nhat Duat, Dong Xuan, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi.

Common lunch in Vietnam

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Bún Thang:

Bun thang
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

When visiting the Old Quarter, you cannot miss the dish called “Bún Thang.” This noodle dish is famous in Hanoi, but it is not commonly sold due to its high level of difficulty. However, you can find several stalls in the Old Quarter that specialize in Bún Thang. At first glance, a bowl of Bún Thang may seem simple, but it requires meticulous preparation and expertise in each ingredient and step.

The broth is simmered from bones and needs to be prepared the night before. A well-made broth will have the fragrant aroma of simmered chicken bones, shrimp, and shiitake mushrooms, with a sweet and rich taste. The bowl of noodles is filled with delicate ingredients: thin egg slices, tender and chewy chicken, fragrant char siu, and crunchy julienned radishes. Don’t forget the garnish of spring onions and cilantro. To enhance the flavor, you can add a little shrimp paste while eating.

Recommended addresses for delicious Bún Thang in the Old Quarter:

– Bún Thang Bà Đức: No. 48 Cầu Gỗ, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Bún Thang – Xôi: No. 29 Hàng Hành, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Bún Thang Lan Lùn: No. 5 Hàng Thiếc, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Bún Chả

Bun cha
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

Alongside beef phở and bún riêu, bún chả completes the unbeatable trio of delicious dishes that capture the hearts of Old Quarter food lovers. A well-made bowl of Hanoi-style bún chả achieves a harmonious combination of grilled pork patties, minced pork, and especially the flavorful and slightly sour dipping sauce.

The meat is marinated to perfection and best grilled over charcoal for an added smoky aroma. The pork patties are large and made with a mixture of lean and fatty meat, ensuring a moist texture when eaten. If you want a more satisfying meal, you can also order fried spring rolls to accompany your bowl of bún chả.

A delicious bowl of bún chả is incomplete without the perfect dipping sauce. The diluted fish sauce is mixed with a little sugar, vinegar, garlic, and chili. The dipping sauce should have a balanced taste of sourness, sweetness, saltiness, and spiciness, making it irresistible.

Recommended addresses for delicious bún chả in the Old Quarter:

– Bún Chả Hàng Quạt: Alley 74 Hàng Quạt, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– Bún Chả Hàng Than: No. 34 Hàng Than, Ba Dinh, Hanoi

– Bún Chả Hoa: Alley 17 Ngõ Yên Thế, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous tasty food brands in Hanoi’s Old Quarter

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Chả Cá Lã Vọng

When mentioning the famous dishes in Hanoi, one cannot forget about Chả Cá Lã Vọng. In Hanoi, there are not many restaurants that serve Chả Cá, and one of the first places to create this dish must be mentioned.

Chả Cá Lã Vọng is made with firm and succulent fish, usually snakehead fish and catfish. The fish is cut into chessboard-like pieces, marinated with spices, and then lightly grilled over charcoal. When served, the fish is placed in a hot pan and placed on a small stove at the table. It is accompanied by herbs, dill, roasted peanuts, and a bowl of shrimp paste.

The fish has a golden crispy outer layer while being soft in the middle. The sweet and fatty flavor of Chả Cá Lã Vọng combines with the aromatic herbs and shrimp paste to create an unforgettable taste of this famous dish in the Old Quarter.

Recommended addresses for delicious Chả Cá Lã Vọng in the Old Quarter:

– Address: No. 14 Chả Cá, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Bún ốc, bún ốc chan

From simple ingredients like snails, beans, bananas, and noodles, skillful processing has created a delicious and unique dish. To have a delicious bowl of snail noodle soup, the ingredients must first be fresh and flavorful.

Boiling the snails with simmering bone broth, sautéing fragrant tomatoes with dried onions to create a pot of flavorful broth, and the beautiful orange hue. A traditional bowl of snail noodles will consist of simple ingredients: noodles and snails. The large, crispy snails, when sipped with a spoonful of broth, release the aroma of snails, the tangy acidity from vinegar and tomatoes. Simple yet unforgettable flavors.

If you belong to the “meat lover” team, you can add toppings like pig ears, beef, balut eggs, or pork fat to enhance the quality of the bowl of noodles. The secret to enjoying this dish is to add a little shrimp paste and spicy stir-fried chili, ensuring an even more delicious taste.

Here are some suggested addresses to try snail noodle soup in the famous old quarter:

– “Mrs. Them’s Snail Noodles”: 6 Hang Chai Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– “Thuy’s Snail Noodles”: 11 Dong Xuan Alley, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– “Mrs. Hue’s Snail Noodles”: 43 Nguyen Sieu Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Mì gà tần

Mi ga tan
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

The next name on the list of famous dishes in the old quarter that you must try is Tan-style chicken noodles. Tan-style chicken noodle shops usually open late, making them an ideal destination for late-night cravings.

Tan-style chicken noodle shops usually offer two options: “ri” chicken and “ac” chicken. You can enjoy the chicken separately or with noodles. The distinctive feature of this dish is the tender chicken in a can, preserving its delicate sweetness. The chicken meat is tender and succulent, dipped in clear broth with a hint of lime, and it’s perfect. The broth has a fragrant flavor of herbal medicine from the North, a slight bitterness from mugwort, and the sweetness of the meat and Chinese apple.

Here are some suggested addresses for delicious Tan-style chicken noodles in the old quarter:

– “Grandma Thuy’s Tan-style Chicken Noodles”: 42 Hang Bo Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi

– “Mai Huong’s Tan-style Chicken Noodles”: 12 Hang Cot Street, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Bánh rán ngọt/mặn phố cổ Hà Nội

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi's old quarter
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

Fried doughnuts in the old quarter are the most addictive food for sweet lovers. Each handcrafted round doughnut has a thin, not overly thick outer crust, coated with dark brown syrup, which is visually appealing. The filling inside consists of smooth mung bean paste and chewy grated coconut.

When the doughnuts are freshly out of the oven, the filling is still warm, resulting in a soft and chewy texture. You can also wait for the doughnuts to cool down; the syrup will harden, making them crunchy. Sweet fried doughnuts have a rich sweet taste. In addition, there are also sugar-coated doughnuts or sesame-coated doughnuts, which are milder and easier to eat. Shops selling fried doughnuts usually offer both sweet and savory options.

The savory doughnuts have a filling made of ground pork, mushrooms, and wood ear fungus sautéed with spices for a rich and flavorful taste. They are delicious when dipped in a tangy and spicy dipping sauce.

Here are some suggested addresses for delicious sweet/savory fried doughnuts:

– “O Quan Chuong Fried Doughnuts”: Corner of O Quan Chuong and Hang Chieu Streets, Hoan Kiem (only sweet doughnuts)

– “Traditional Fried Doughnuts”: 52 Hang Chieu Street, Hoan Kiem (only sweet doughnuts)

– “Hai Xe Fried Doughnuts”: 5 Luong Ngoc Quyen Street, Hoan Kiem

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi’s Old quarter – Xôi chè, chè thạch đen

Top 10 famous food in Hanoi's Old quarter
Dishes that worth trying in Hanoi’s Old quarter

Summer is the season of dessert. What could be better than a hot afternoon with a refreshing cup of fragrant black jelly dessert with a touch of jasmine fragrance? The jelly is soft and smooth, the tapioca pearls are chewy, and the lotus seeds are tender and fragrant.

If the black jelly dessert is cool and refreshing, sweet rice with bean paste is slightly warm, but both are delicious in any season. Sweet rice with bean paste comes in two varieties: one with yellow mung bean filling and the other with fragrant sticky rice and green rice flakes. Both are fragrant and especially soft and tender. The sweet dessert pairs perfectly with sticky rice.

Here are some recommended dessert shops in the old quarter:

  • Xôi chè bà Thìn: Số 1 Bát Đàn, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội
  • Lê Thịnh – xôi chè phố cổ: Số 26 Gia Ngư, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội
  • Chè 4 mùa: Số 4 Hàng Cân, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội

 

Common dinner food in Vietnam

 

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