|Vietnamese – Budget
3A3 Bun Bo Hue
39A Ngo Duc Ke, Q1 Tel: 3829 3526
Bun Bo Hue starting at VND22,000 a bowl; also a serves small selection of Hue-style cuisine such as banh uot.
Banh Cuon Tay Ho
127 Dinh Tien Hoang, Q1 Tel: 3820 0584
One of the best known banh cuon joints in down starting at VND15,000 a plate.
Banh Xeo 46A
46A Dinh Cong Trang, Q1 Tel: 3824 1110
One of the best Banh Xeo joints in town and has gained tourist popularity.
Beefsteak Nam Son
188 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, Q3
200Bis Nguyen Thi Minh Khai, Q3
Specialises in tasty Vietnamese or Australian steak. Served sizzling on a griddle with thick-cut fries, bread and salad, you can add pate or an egg, all for under VND40,000.
136 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia Tel: 3822 9913
Specialises in tasty and beautifully presented Vietnamese rice noodle dishes in a colonial-style setting. Conveniently located opposite the Reunification Palace.
Com Ga Hai Nam
55/2 Le Thi Hong Gam, Q1 Tel: 3821 7751
Budget chicken rice eatery doing an excellent version of this Hainanese dish for around VND20,000.
Com Ga Hong Thang
378 Hai Ba Trung, Q1 Tel: 3820 0781
Open from morning until late and crowded during lunch and dinner, this place has an excellent reputation for serving up reasonably priced, reliably delicious Chinese-style chicken rice.
Com Tam Moc
85 Ly Tu Trong, Q1 Tel: 3824 8561
Serves up generous portions of com tam in comfortable, aircon surroundings. Expect to pay no more than VND50,000 for a full meal.
Hu Tieu Hong Phat
389 – 391 Vo Van Tan, Q3 Tel: 3839 0187
Selection of Hu tieu Nam Vang, ha cao xiu mai, banh bao, hu tieu bo kho, mi xao don, ca kho and suon chua ngot are the highlights. Prices range from VND7,000 to VND40,000.
100 Ton That Tung, Q1 Tel: 3839 2240
This mammoth local restaurant serves local diners very cheap and familiar Vietnamese fare, esepcially its ca com (whitebait).
Pho Hoa Pasteur
260C Pasteur, Q3 Tel: 3829 7943
With 40 years in the business, this busy spot has a large and dedicated following. Prices are on the expensive side, costing VND37,000 to 40,000 for a bowl.
323 Pham Ngu Lao, Q1 Tel: 3836 8515
Late-night pho eatery noted for its pho bo kho Close to the backpacker area, so the staff speak some English. Prices are under VND35,000 a dish.
Vietnamese – Mid to Top End
3T Quan Nuong
Top Floor, 29 Ton That Thiep, Q1
Tel: 3821 1631
A rooftop homage to the art of barbequing and grilling, with an expansive menu of meat, fish and vegetarian dishes on offer. Best to book in advance.
Buffet An Nam
60 Suong Nguyet Anh, Q1
Tel: 3925 5046
Elegant and luxurious design with authentic and traditional Vietnamese food. Buffet available from 6pm to 9.30pm daily at VND100,000 for adults and VND60,000 for kids.
Com Nieu Saigon
6C Tu Xuong, Q3 Tel: 3932 6388
59 Ho Xuan Huong, Q3 Tel: 3930 2888
Rice flies round this restaurant in the signature com dap claypot-smashing ritual and the menu contains fairly accessible and cheap dishes like thit heo nuoc dua (pork simmered in coconut milk).
74/7 Hai Ba Trung, Q1 Tel: 3825 1676
Recently opened in the courtyard opposite the Park Hyatt, this cosy eatery specialises in contemporary Vietnamese cuisine. From the same people as the Refinery and Au Parc so expect good food and service. Also has a lovely outdoor tea garden.
54 Pham Ngoc Thach, Q3 Tel: 3829 2977
Nha Trang inspired seafood fare with dishes such as tom su hap dua (coconut steamed prawns) and chem chep nuong mo hanh (grilled sea clam basted in onions and fat).
38 Ly Tu Trong, Q1 Tel: 822 6814
The brainchild of Japanese restaurateur Jin Shirai, Huong Lai hires and trains disadvantaged youths in life skills, hospitality and languages in an attempt to give them a “second chance”. Serving tasty, home-style Vietnamese cuisine in a French-inspired setting, this restaurant has seen some of its former staff go on to other service jobs.
Lan Gio Moi
396 Cao Thang, Q10 Tel: 3863 0063
This is a contemporary five-storey restaurant and lounge serving Vietnamese, European and Chinese cuisine. They have private VIP rooms, nightly live music and a rooftop patio dining area.
98 Nguyen Trai, Q1, 7 Cao Thang, Q1 and 302 Hai Ba Trung, Q1
Pleasant, aircon chain of restaurants selling tasty Hue cuisine in an attractive, modern environment. Dishes include bun bo Hue, the excellent goi thanh tra (pomelo with dried squid salad) and many typical Hue dishes. A standard dish costs around VND40,000.
19C Le Quy Don, Q3 Tel: 3930 0071
Seafood is the name of the game at this popular, open-plan eatery with branches across the country. A meal here can cost anything from VND50,000 to VND500,000.
Quan An Ngon
138 Nam Ky Khoi Nghia, Q1 Tel: 3825 7179
The recipe is simple – take 20 or so of the city’s best streetside food stalls, give them a makeover, put them all together in an airy courtyard and wait for the customers to roll in. The result is top-notch basic food at low prices, with a packed house most hours.
29 – 31 Ton That Thiep, Q1
Tel: 3829 9244
A colonial, art deco atmosphere is very much to the fore here, with the ancient wood and masonry providing a romantic, yet elegant backdrop to the restaurant and its attached living-room style lounge bar. An uncomplicated menu brings together tasty versions of street dishes and regional specialities from around Vietnam.
187 Hai Ba Trung, Q1Tel: 3829 7242
The menu concentrates on food from Hue, the former Imperial capital. Originally owned by Trinh Cong Son, the Bob Dylan of Vietnam, main dishes at this elegant and sophisticated restaurant start at VND100,000.
Wrap & Roll
62 Hai Ba Trung, Q1; 97B Nguyen Trai, Q1; SA1-1 Nguyen Van Linh, My Khánh 1, Q7
Wrap & Roll has done for the fresh Vietnamese spring roll what Pho 24 has done for beef noodle soup. The concept is simple: make your own spring rolls in a clean, air-conditioned and friendly atmosphere.