Eating in Sai Gon: Splurge
Hard Rock Cafe, part of the Kumho Asiana Plaza complex, which is located at 39 Le Duan Avenue, Dist. 1. Hard Rock Cafe offers the usual American burgers and grill dishes. Very expensive at around 290,000 Dong for a burger meal. Good service and friendly staff. They also have live bands on selected evenings. Great choice if you are craving Western food, and want to pick up some memorabilia from the Rock Shop.
Villa Romaine, part of the Thao Dien Village complex, which is located at 195 Nguyen Van Huong Street, Thao Dien Ward, Dist. 2, Tel: (84.8) 3744.645 – offering the highest quality Italian food in the city. The restaurant is just 15 minutes by taxi from District 1 (or 7 minutes by boat) and is set on the banks of the Saigon River. The restaurant is a peaceful change of pace from the chaos of District 1 and well worth a visit if you are visiting Saigon. For more info check out the website: www.thaodienvillage.com
Au Lac do Brazil, 238 Pasteur, between Dien Bien Phu and Vo Thi Sau. Just to prove that Saigon has everything, here is a Brazilian-style churrascaria (all-you-can-eat restaurant featuring barbecued meat), with live Latin music Tuesday to Saturday. They also have a new outlet in Sky Garden II, Phu My Hung, Dist 7. It’s a larger and less crowded one with usually better service. (Price $30+ USD per person)
Co Ngu, on Pasteur just before Dien Bien Phu, Q1. Nice Vietnamese and Asian-fusion food in a Villa setting, with indoor and garden seating. Popular for business groups. Prices higher than average for Saigon, but a better value than you will find in the tourist section of town.
Huy Long Vien, 99 Nguyen Du, across from the Reunification Palace. Fantastic Chinese food that has the works from Peking Duck to all you can eat dim sum. It’s big and fancy inside and makes you feel like you’re in ancient China. There’s also some a guy who pours tea out of a long kettle while performing Kung fu poses.
La Habana, 6 Cao Ba Quat, Q1, two blocks northeast of the Hyatt and opera house. Outstanding Spanish and Cuban-style food, including a large tapas menu. Also one of the few places in Vietnam that makes really good cocktails.
La Hosteria, on Le Thanh Ton a few blocks east of the Hilton. A gourmet Italian restaurant with excellent home-made pasta dishes in the range of 125,000 dong and main dishes 150,000+.
L’En tete, 1st floor, 139 Nguyen Thai Binh, Q.1 (at the junction with Calmette). Excellent French restaurant in a area not normally associated with high dining. Great for a leisurely dining experience, good food with main courses ranging from 150000-450000 dong. Open 17:00-midnight,
Pomodoro’s, Decent small Italian restaurant on Hai Ba Trung, a block from the Hilton and around the corner from the Sheraton and Caravelle Hotels. Delicious lasagna is their specialty; the pizzas are a bit oily but OK. Prices are reasonable compared to the USA or Europe, with a nice dinner of 2 starters, cocktails, .5 litre carafe of wine, mains and deserts all for roughly US$50. very poor service
The Sheraton on Dong Khoi has a magnificent, though expensive (US$40-ish) all you can eat buffet dinner. Red and white wine included.
Tân Nam, 60-62 Dong Du, Q.1 (a few doors down from Sheraton Saigon). The ground floor is open-air, the upper floor is air-con. Rather expensive and mediocre food, around US$10/person but they will park your motorcycle while you eat, and wander around the waterfront.
Temple Club, 29-31 Ton That Thiep, Q.1 (first floor, with an ice cream parlour below) has a 1930′s ambiance with separate bar, restaurant, and lounge area sections. The food is fair but most people come to soak up the atmosphere.
Villa Romaine, part of the Thao Dien Village complex, which is located at 195 Nguyen Van Huong Street, Thao Dien Ward, Dist. 2, Tel: (84.8) 3744.645 – offering the highest quality Italian food in the city. The restaurant is just 15 minutes by taxi from District 1 (or 7 minutes by boat) and is set on the banks of the Saigon River. The restaurant is a peaceful change of pace from the chaos of District 1 and well worth a visit if you are in Saigon
ZanZBar Restaurant & Bar 41 Dong Du Street, Q1 (diagonally opposite Sheraton Hotel) has modern casual-upscale feel with extensive range of international & Vietnamese cuisine (plenty for vegetarians to choose from too). Eclectic crowd comprised of local Vietnamese, local Expatriates and visiting Tourists. Huge wine-by-glass & cocktail menu. Food is world class and generous in size, cocktails memorable. You could be anywhere in the world. Very popular place at any time of the day – at night time the lit collums create a great ambience.