Stands and storefronts line the streets of Da Nang selling all manner of local delicacies. Central Vietnamese food, prepared fresh by vendors and enjoyed by locals on Vietnam’s signature low stools and plastic chairs, offers surprising variety in both tasteand presentation.
These are Vietnamese crepes. The name literally means “sizzling cake” and the sound and smell of banh xeo frying can be found all over the city. They have a flour base and colored with turmeric, and are filled with pork belly, shrimp, sprouts and mung bean. It’s got a savory taste.
Just south of the Dragon Bridge, down a narrow alleyway, Banh Xeo Street is hidden gem in Da Nang. Local vendors compete to perfect the dish and its signature peanut sause.
Banh xeo street: K280 Phan Chau Trinh, Da Nang
This is an iconic Central Vietnamese dish that has a lot of family recipes and secret ingredientes.
Each vendor has a unique take on it, but the main ingridients are always flat rice noodles, a zesty peanut and chicken broth base topped with all manner of meats, fish or even frog, and served with a side of rice crackers, herbs, and blossoms meant to be mixed in the bowl.
Mi Quang Bep Trang: 441 Ong Ich Khiem, Da Nang
Banh Mi (Vietnamese bread)
A relic of French colonialism and probably Vietnam’s most famous culinary export, the banh mi sandwich can be found at street stalls and bakeries nearly anywhere.
The baguette is cut and spead with pate, mayonnaise, cucumber, daikon pickles, and a pepper sauce then filled with either cold cuts, roast pork, or fried eggs to other.
The rich meats and light vegetables lend a nice balance to this famous sadwich. Banh mi vendors can be found on most streets in Da Nang.
Anchovy sause vermicelli, this robust and filling soup originated somewhere south of Da Nang in the Me Kong River delta and as such features a diverse range of meat, seafood, and herbs.
It consists of thin rice noodles in anchovy fish sauce from Nam O fishing village flavored broth topped with pork belly, squid, shrimp, eggplant, and both fish and fish cake.
The meaty dish is served with a side of herbs and blossoms to add dimension to the savory broth and toppings.
Trang Ke Xuong Food Court: 23 Tran Ke Xuong, Da Nang.
Bun Cha Ca
A rice vermicelli based soup in a tangy broth served piping hot, Bun Cha Ca originally hails from the north, but can be found all over Da Nang.
This dish is simple, but delicious in its simplicity. Steam noodles are topped with fish cakes and balls of all shapes and sizes served alongside special nuoc cham sweet and sour fish sauce. The light and tangy soup sometimes garnished with soy cakes as well.
- Ba Phien Restaurant: 51&63 LeHong Phong, Da Nang.
- Ong Ta Restaurant: 97 Nguyen Chi Thanh, Da Nang
- 109 Restaurant: 109 Nguyen Chi Thanh, Da Nang
Com Ga (Chicken Rice)
Cultures the world over have some variation on this dish, the classic chicken and rice. The Central Vietnamese take consists of roast chicken, fried rice, pickles, vegetables and hot soup. It’s simple, hearty, and filling.
Pham Hong Thai Food Court: Whole Pham Hong Thai Street.
Bo Ne (Vietnamese Beef Steak)
This beef dish is a rich and filling take on the banh mi that originated in Saigon. An iron plate is filled with all kinds of meat – beef, sausage, pate, and whatever else is on the menu. The cook cracks an egg over an open flame, grilling the ingredients together in their juices. The sizzling plate is dropped off right at the table and served with a toasted baguette.
3 Ngon Restaurant: 20 Nguyen Van Linh, Da Nang, 17 Nguyen Van Thoai, Da Nang, 244 Nguyen Cong Tru, Da Nang.
Nam O Sashimi
Originating in the Nam O fishing village that lies at the foot of Hai Van Pass, the outskirts of Da Nang, this traditional Vietnamese raw fish takes advantage of the constant influx of fresh seafood.
There are two varieties of this sashimi. The first is soft fresh fish (what most would be familiar with) and the second is a fried jerky. It’s served with a spicy sauce and a fish sauce and carries the distinct clean flavor of just caught fish.
Thanh Huong Restaurant: 1029 Nguyen Luong Bang, Da Nang, Vinh Restaurant: 960 Nguyen Luong Bang, Da Nang.
Banh Trang Cuon Thit Heo
Pork wrapped in rice paper, this Central Vietnamese take on the spring roll is a hands-on experience.
Grilled pork is served with local greens and, sometimes, some banh xeo thrown in the mix. The most important ingredient, rice paper is laid out in long square sheets.
Diners arrange the ingredients on rice paper held flat, rolled with the other hand, and eaten. It’s fresh light dish especially popular around Tet.
Seafood and Hotpots
Seafood restaurants can be found along the seafront. Tanks full of fish, shellfish, shrimp, lobsters and crabs are arranged in front of restaurants where you can choose what youwant to eat and how it is cooked.
Vietnamese hot pot is also popular at the seafood restaurants.
Sliced meat or seafood, leaf vegetables and mushrooms are cooked in a pot of simmering soup and then dipped in fish sauce or soy sauce mixed with ginger.
Wanderlust Tips | Cinet