Eating in Vietnam
Tourists have to be selective of where they eat unless they want to struggle ordering off the menu. In tourist areas menus often have English translations so you know exactly what you’re ordering. However is you visit a restaurant in a non-tourist part of town, you might have a hard time ordering from the menu. Chances are high that you’ll order food not knowing what it is unless your server can speak English. Although food preparation laws are different in Vietnam, few of our guests experience stomach problems.
Unless you’re at an expensive hotel, most places where you’ll stay will offer food as a buffet. It will likely be a combination of Asian and international cuisine. Vietnam Private Tours lets you choose where you want to eat. However we do offer an alternative that we like to call “street eating,” which takes you to Hanoi and you can sample foods from a variety of local cafes.
Our staff will be more than willing to show you where to go and the best part of all is that local cafes typically offer food at a fraction of the price in comparison to restaurants. Although some of the ways that food is handled might scare you at first, don’t worry because we’ve never had anyone experience stomach problems after eating at the cafes. We make sure to take guests to safe places to eat and would never want your stay to be troubled with an upset stomach. When we’re traveling in remote locations without restaurants, we’ll provide the food.
Most of the things we eat in Vietnam are very healthy. There aren’t any ovens so cooking is typically done by grilling, frying, boiling, and steaming. As you might have guessed our main dish in Vietnam is rice. During your travels you’ll get to experience a variety of cooking styles as each region has its own unique taste and spices.
Drinking in Vietnam
Vietnam has a variety of drinks to choose from so don’t worry about having a selection and finding something you like. We have Coke and Pepsi is you like soda, but we also have a number of locally made sodas that you can try. Fruity drinks are quite common in Vietnam so make sure to try those too. When it comes to water you might want to be careful. A safe bet if you want to drink water if to buy bottled water. Like in a lot of countries, drinking water you’re not accustomed to may hurt your stomach.
Vietnam does grow coffee but it won’t taste like the coffee you’re used to drinking. It’s very strong and very few people actually drink it. We’ve noticed that few of our guests have enjoyed drinking the coffee that you can buy. However in some of the tourist locations you can find coffee that is common in Western cultures like the United States. Simply look for the sign for Western-style coffee.
As you may have heard tea is quite common in Vietnam. It’s often served as green tea, the kind typically given to people visiting friends and family. Black tea is another popular choice. In tourist areas you might find other tea options but there is no guarantee that you’ll enjoy them. But remember you’re in Vietnam and it’s all about trying new things.
Alcoholic beverages in Vietnam are not all that common. If you find alcohol that you’re used to drinking, it’s probably going to be expensive because it had to be shipped. In Vietnam we have rice wine and lager-style beer. It’s important to note that any local alcohol that you try will be completely different from what you’re used to drinking. But once again, you’re in a new country and the whole point of traveling is to experience new things. If you order a drink and you don’t like it, try not to overreact. Vietnamese people are easily offended and you certainly don’t want to do that.
When you’re visiting Hanoi there is a restaurant that specializes in fruit wines and liqueurs. These beverages come from the hill tribe villages and a member from our team will be more than happy to take you and help you get back to your hotel safely.
Most beer in Vietnam will come as a French-style lager, also called bia hoi. You should know that this beer is quite low in alcohol but it can usually be found at a cheap cost. The good thing is that there is plenty of it and it’s served cold. You’ll enjoy as you relax from a hot day touring the country.