The first time I tried bánh xèo, a turmeric pancake, was at Busago in Mumbai in the early 2000s, and I was immediately struck by how fresh and fragrant Vietnamese food was. In India, I had my first taste of Vietnamese cuisine, which was served with a sweet-sour flavour. Years later, when I finally got my hands on some authentic bánh ms in Ho Chi Minh, I was blown away by the energy of the food. Diners lined the sidewalks, perched on little red stools, their eyes fixed intently on their bowls. Vietnamese cuisine has the same flavour profile as Indian and Chinese cookery. Therefore, it is a perfect match for the tastes of the Indian people.
Nachiket Shetye, restaurant consultant and founder of Kytchens, explains that the cuisine’s rising appeal can be attributed to the fact that it is often considered to be among the world’s healthiest. Recently, Vietnamese cuisine has been making its way into India’s restaurant industry at a quick clip, with a number of new establishments offering entire menus devoted to it or at least including a few dishes from it.
We’ve compiled a directory of the greatest Vietnamese restaurants in India
Nho Saigon, Mumbai
Nho Saigon, is one of the newest Vietnamese restaurants in India, with dishes inspired by both Vietnamese street food and the country’s French colonial past. Saigon-style dumplings, Viet skewers, in which meat is charred over coal on sugarcane sticks, and classic stir fries like rau muong, morning glory tossed with garlic and bird’s eye chilli, and coconut ice cream on, wait for it, puréed avocado are just a few of the options.
Located in the popular Kala Ghoda neighbourhood, this vegetarian-friendly restaurant specialises in Asian fare but also offers a wide selection for those looking for Vietnamese cuisine. Bánh canh, udon-like noodles served with cauli cream and lotus root chips, and cháo gà congee, a typical chicken porridge, are both reimagined as vegetarian options, with the congee made of root vegetables for texture and the “fish” sauce made of seaweed. We particularly enjoy condiments that capture subtleties of flavour, such as basil oil, coriander oil, and coconut-chilli-coriander dip.
Viet: Nom, Delhi
This restaurant, located in Delhi’s Cyber Hub neighbourhood, specialises in Vietnamese cuisine and offers a wide variety of options. There’s grilled chicken in there somewhere, and it’s served in a salad with a dressing made of coconut milk and kaffir lime leaves. Additionally, there are hot Vietnamese chicken wings, rice crackers topped with eggs, vegetables, and spring onion, and barbecued vegetables mixed with imitation meat wrapped in a Vietnamese BBQ sauce.
Blue Ginger, Bengaluru
This restaurant’s cuisine is exclusively Vietnamese, focusing on fan favourites including fresh herbs, rice, seafood, and base sauces like soy-lime, fish-sauce, bean sauce, lemongrass, and ginger-lime to capture the authentic flavours of Vietnamese cooking. Choose from options like grilled fish in Hanoi style with dill and fresh turmeric and vegetables in Saigon sauce or fried prawns with sesame on sticks. You may also get a variety of the best items on the menu in a bento box prepared in the Vietnamese way.
Va Pho, Chennai
A delivery service specialising in Asian cuisine that takes its name from Vietnam’s national meal, pho. Saigon-style ph is the main attraction, but the menu also includes Vietnamese pineapple-tossed rice and chicken wings in a Hanoi-style chilli sauce.
Little Saigon, Delhi
Vietnamese cuisine is the sole focus of this little Hauz Khaz restaurant. It takes its name from the most populous city in southern Vietnam, which is also a major culinary centre. In addition to ph chay, an aromatic rice noodle soup, they serve ga kho gung, or caramelised ginger chicken, tht heo quay, a local variation of roasted pig belly, xôi np, or plain sticky rice, and a variety of salads and appetisers.
The Fatty Bao, Bengaluru
The Fatty Ph Ramen combines the finest of Japanese and Vietnamese cuisines. Chicken bones, ginger, onions, and fragrant spices including star anise, cinnamon bark, cloves, coriander seeds, and cardamom are used to prepare the restaurant’s unique soup. The distinctive flavour of pho comes from the combination of chopped onions and a generous chunk of ginger that has been broiled until well-charred. Hoisin sauce and handmade noodles end the dish, which also includes abundant sprouts, Thai basil, fried garlic, scallions, grilled chicken, and soft-boiled eggs marinated in soy sauce.
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