Yummy Jubbly ventured to Hanoi, Vietnam last year and one of tourists attractions was in search for some authentic Vietnamese food and hunted down two of their must haves street food in Hanoi, Pho and Banh Cuon.
I’ve never liked using the word “cheap” to describe the wonderful food in South Eat Asia, instead I prefer to say that they are “great value”.
In Vietnam I discovered many great value delightful street food, Pho and Banh Cuon are just a few of them.
Pho 10 is located in the centre of Old Quarter Hanoi on the corner of busy side street Ly Quoc Su Street, we went just after the breakfast rush so we got a table right away.
At the front of the restaurant was the kitchen where the magic of making these wonderful bowls of Pho happens where you can see the the noodle and meat piled high with a huge tub of boiling boiling broth, to say that I was excited is an under statement.
I ordered the “Special Bowl” which came with different cut of beef, brisket, flanks and fillet. The soup was steaming hot and it released a very distinctive Pho fragrance from all the different spices and meat bones that were simmering for hours.
The meats were thinly sliced, almost to the point of transparency, which is then placed raw on top of the noodle, the broth is then ladled over which warms up the noodle and cooks the meat.
The meat was tender, juicy, with great texture and a very organic meaty flavour. The noodles was soft but with some bite to it, you can tell that these are fresh and it was just a pleasure to eat.
I added the all the goodies that came with it, the herbs, chilis, lime just elevated the who bowl of Pho and it was just amazing, which is why we went back before we left Hanoi, Pho 10 is definitely a must if you are in Hanoi.. and it cost less that £3! Amazing!
Did I forget to mention the restaurant was air-conditioned as well?
On the same day we went to eat Banh Cuon at Banh Cuon Gia Truyen.
Slightly further out from the centre, with the heat and humidity and with ever flowing traffic in Hanoi, it was a bit of a trek, but it was well worth it.
These small plates of delicate steam rolls with a choice of different filling were just a pleasure to eat. We chose the pork and the shrimp versions. The roll itself was just smooth and soft with effortless chewing and the meat was just tender and packed with flavours.
I did prefer the pork version more because it had a better texture which pair so well with the sauce and crispy shallots.
Hanoi is the first Vietnam city I have visited; so I am unable to compare the pho and banh cuon I had in Hanoi with other Vietnam cities. Allbeit, I truly enjoy ourselves in Hanoi, by just simply chilling and enjoying authentic good street food in Old Quarter, Hanoi. I am big fan of Pho back in London but the one I had in Hanoi was still simply the best! Unless you have many days to spare in Hanoi, I would simply urge you to make Pho 10 and Banh Cuon Gia Truyen as your must go destination!
Location: 10 Lý Quốc Sư, Hàng Trống, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam
Banh Cuon Gia Truyen:
Location: 14 Hàng Gà, Hàng Bồ, Hoàn Kiếm, Hà Nội, Vietnam