a stomach for adventure
Without doubt Vietnam has some of the world’s tastiest cuisine. Intrepid’s Jacqueline Donaldson discovered that eating and preparing everything from sweet pastries to steaming bowls of pho is intrinsic to the Vietnamese way of life, just as trying new things is an essential ingredient for a full-flavoured adventure…
“On the last night of our Spirit of Vietnam Southbound trip, our tour leader Phuong took us all to a wonderful restaurant about 10 minutes by cyclo from our hotel. Having eaten spectacular food in all of our Vietnam stops, Phuong promised that our final dinner in Vietnam would be an experience we wouldn’t forget.
If I had been in Ho Chi Minh City by myself I would never have found this unassuming gem. The restaurant was almost a warehouse down a crowded alley with simple plastic tables and fluorescent lights. Our group was seated amongst wonderful smells, chattering locals and the rising smoke of barbecues.
As we eagerly turned our heads to the menu above us, Phuong broke into a broad grin as we read with faces whitening; sauteed pork stomach with greens; grilled or fried field rat with coconut; minced or stewed snake with lemongrass; grilled crickets; and to top it off, steamed goat or beef boy bits with Chinese medicinals. Hmmm, we definitely wouldn’t forget this restaurant in a hurry!
Luckily there were over 200 dishes on the menu and Phuong ordered a fantastic feast of barbecued meats, fish, chicken and vegetarian delights. We got to try things we wouldn’t have normally chosen and thoroughly enjoyed not only the food but dining in a popular local hangout. Food is definitely a highlight of travelling in Vietnam and strange animals aside, it is worth being as adventurous as your stomach will allow!”
Tour Vietnam with Intrepid on trips like these great small group adventures:
The Spirit of Vietnam Southbound – 10 days Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City
Colours of Vietnam – 20 days Ho Chi Minh City to Hanoi