Street food touring Hanoi - self guided - review by Rusty Compass
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Street food touring Hanoi - self guided

| 14 Aug 2018
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Street food touring Hanoi - self guided
From Duong Thanh to Hang Dieu St, Hanoi
Evening eating


Price guide: $

Our rating
14 Aug 2018

Street food tours are all the rage in Saigon and Hanoi. The best of them are excellent. But you’d be surprised what you can discover on your own. We took a random Hanoi street, Hang Dieu St, ate our way along it. We had a sensational time. And we only tried a tiny selection of what was on offer.

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Hanoi’s street food scene is fantastic. Little eateries serving up the city’s trademark dishes are everywhere. Pick a street in the city's Old Quarter and you'll likely find a plethora of culinary possibilities. Follow the locals and tuck in.

I decided to take a walk along Hang Dieu St, on the fringe of the old quarter, to see what culinary delights I could find along a random strip of the city. Hang Dieu St isn’t a famous food street, but there’s food everywhere. Some of the eateries were familiar. Some not.

I started at Duong Thanh St near Hang Bong St for pho ga (chicken pho) and then headed to Hang Dieu St. We tried nuoc mia (sugar cane juice), banh cuon, finishing up at Xoi Thuy at the corner of Hang Dieu and Bat Dan St.

There are many other choices apart from those I tried too. And there are many other streets offering the same delicious culinary diversity. So choose any street you see that looks to have lots of food options, and create your own little food adventure. The interaction with the locals will be a highlight - even if you don’t speak any Vietnamese.

The old couple we met at the end of this video were an even bigger highlight than the great food. Heartwarming people.

Here are the dishes you should know by name when wandering Hanoi’s streets -

Pho - Vietnam’s famed noodle soup - usually served with chicken (pho ga) or beef (pho bo).
Bun Cha - grilled pork, bun noodles and herbs - it’s probably the most famous Hanoi dish after pho.
Banh Cuon - Rice cakes with ground pork mince, mushrooms and herbs.
Xoi - Sticky rice, usually also served with pork, herbs and vegetables.
Bun dau - Tofu, noodles and fermented shrimp sauce (the very pungent and delicious purple one).
Mien Luon - Eel noodle soup.

There are plenty of other street food dishes too. These will keep you busy enough during a short stay in the city.

How to choose?

Simple. Check out the other customers (make sure there are customers). If they look happy and you like the look of what they’re eating, have a go.

Mark Bowyer
Mark Bowyer is the founder and publisher of Rusty Compass.
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