When I was in Saigon, one day I met up with Kyle LeDotNet (http://youtube.com/kyleledotnet), a local vlogger and blogger, for a day of cruising around and eating. We started at one of the most famous restaurants in the city, Bánh Xèo 46A to eat the Vietnamese crepe known as banh xeo. The southern Vietnamese version, as I’m told, is large than other versions around the country, and we ordered their specialities – a huge savory crepe, packed full of pork belly and shrimp and bean sprouts, then folded over and served with a pile of fresh leafy vegetables and Vietnamese sweet fish sauce to dip. It was my first tiem to eat Vietnamese banh xeo, and it was pretty tasty.
After the banh xeo, continuing on our Saigon food tour adventures, we then caught a taxi to Bánh Cuốn Hải Nam, a restaurant in the city known for serving Vietnamese banh cuon – like thin rice pancakes filled with a savory filling and rolled, and again, served with the signature sweet Vietnamese fish sauce. I’m a huge lover of banh cuon, and I loved them even before going to Saigon this trip, so I really enjoyed these. The outer wrapping was soft and silly, and the filling was meaty and salty, and you can’t forget about that sweet salty fish sauce, to which I added some chili as well – it was delicious.
After two quick meals we headed to a Saigon restaurant called Bình Xuyên 2, sort of an entretainment restaurant in the city – like a full amusement restaurant. People come to this type of restaurant to relax, to spend time with the family, and to feast, and that was the reason we came. The first dish we ordered was a deep fried giant gourami fish (cá tai tượng chiên xù), covered in its own scales and topped with peanuts and shallots. The fish was served along with Vietnamese rice paper, rice vermicelli noodles, and lots of herbs and fresh vegetables, and finally a fermented fish dipping sauce. The combination was incredibly good – it was easily my favorite dish of this Saigon food tour. Next we also ordered a flaming hot pan of pig intestines (dồi trường), seasoned with lime juice and tossed with herbs and vegetables. Again it was delicious and served on a huge flaming hot platter. Our final dish of the meal at Bình Xuyên 2 restaurant was cơm cháy, kind of a burnt rice. It was good and smokey and crispy all at the same time.
After our delicious early dinner, we continued on to walk around an area of Saigon known as Phu My Hung, and then proceeded on to Notre Dame cathedral in the heart of the city to experience the snacking culture around there. I had eaten it already a couple of times, but while at Notre Dame, I had a snack called banh trang trung, a piece of Vietnamese rice paper, topped with meat and a quail egg, then roasted over fire.
Our final stop was at Kem Nhãn Chú Tám, a legendary Saigon ice cream street where the two shops, right next to each other, fight for business – it was an intense and quite an enjoyable ice cream food adventures.
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Thanks for watching this Saigon food tour adventure, hope you enjoyed it.