In Vietnam, breakfast and lunch are eaten on the run, making street food a huge part of Vietnamese living. Hoi An, on the coast of the South China Sea, has some of the best in the country.
Central Food Market
When Hoi An became a UNESCO World Heritage Site, all mobile stalls were relocated to the Central Food Market, in an attempt to improve street cleanliness. Head here and you will eat like a king (or a local) for hardly any money. Prices are fixed at 20-25,000 VND (less than one euro) a dish depending on serving size. Wash down with the traditional nước mía, sugar cane juice.
Bale Well is located on Ba Le Well Lane on the edge of Hoi An’s Old Town and is extremely popular with locals. Bale Well refers to an ancient well where locals would source water for Hoi An specialty cao lầu, a thick noodle soup of pork or seafood. Don’t eat before you get to Bale Well because you will leave extremely well-fed, having tasted a huge range of dishes, as encouraged by the friendly owner: try the bánh xèo, the Hoi An version of these pancakes is a specialty.
Thanh Cao Lầu
A good place to try Hoi An’s signature dish, cao lầu, is at Thanh Cao Lầu. The stall is open daily from noon but opening hours vary depending on how quickly the ingredients run out. If you would prefer to be seated at a restaurant, Ms Vy’s Morning Glory on 106 Nguyen Thai Hoc Street comes highly recommended. However, you shouldn’t leave Hoi An without at least once enjoying this local delicacy from the height of a stool.
Com Ga Huong
As is suggested by the name, Com Ga Huong serves one thing: com ga, rice cooked in chicken stock and turmeric, mixed with shredded chicken, crushed onion, and Vietnamese spices. Com Ga Huong is a favorite with the locals and is steadily becoming more popular with tourists. Make sure to get there earlier rather than later to ensure the pot isn’t cleaned before your arrival.
Bánh Mì Phượng
Bánh mì is a Vietnamese sandwich containing pickled vegetables, pâté, salad, and a filling of your choice. At Bánh Mì Phượng, you will find Hoi An’s most delicious bánh mì. It is a great place to eat at if you are craving some Western food with a Vietnamese slant, all of which can be enjoyed from a stall at a table, just as the Vietnamese do it.