3 must-try dishes with best restaurants for a day in Hoi An
Posted By : Threeland Travel / Food and Drink

They say that “English is an international language that connects people in one voice, but food connects every soul in this world.” Follow my steps on this day tour in Hoi An to find out what and where to eat in this incredible town.

Each dish in this small town represents one unique charm of an ancient town that you cannot see in anywhere else on the earth. Although about acreage, this city is quite small, the cuisine is diverse and exclusive. Just from the first bite, you can tell that it is Hoi An.

See more: Hoi An info: Overview and Travel guide

1.    Cao lau


The first I always want to introduce for all of my friends and visitors that visit Hoi An for a day tour is Cao lau – a traditional food here. This dish plays a vital role in the culinary culture of Hoi An people. With the delicious combination of Cao lau noodles, shrimp, barbecue pork, bean sprouts, lettuce, and herb, I bet you will immediately fall in love with it.

Unlike Pho and other noodles which use broth made from chicken bones or aitchbone, the broth of Cao lau is gravy of barbecue pork. And the noodle is also unique that it takes hours and effort to make it. You have to choose the best rice in the town, through many steps: wash, soak, grind, and steam to create perfect noodle with a featured yellowish color and moderate tough.

From the first bite, you can taste of harmony combination between ingredients in the bowl: the tender of meat, the fatty of the broth, the fresh of vegetable, and the delicious tough of noodle. Hoi An people, usually say that: “With a bowl of cao lau, every sorrow disappears,” they can eat it through days and nights as main courses or just brunch in the afternoon.

To find the best cao lau in Hoi An, you can come to these addresses:
- Thanh cao lau: located at no 26 Thai Phien Street, in the center of the ancient town, it is a small stall of Mrs Thanh. With unique traditional recipe, she has sold cao lau since 1998, and the stall is packed almost every day.


                                                      Lien Cao Lau stall - No.16 Thai Phien, Hoi An

- Lien cao lau: it is another small family stall in No.16 Thai Phien street with more than 30 years. From the outside, you can easily see the whole stall from the kitchen where they cook cao lau to the tables that customers are enjoying their noodle. From the front door, you will quickly get attracted by the delicious smell of cao lau. 

2.    Banh mi

Banh mi is famous food in Vietnam, from north to south, you can randomly find a small stall that sells banh mi on every street of the country. So what makes banh mi so unique in Hoi An that every visitor wants to try it once you’re in a Hoi An day tour?

Influenced by French cuisine when Vietnam was a French colony, you might say that banh mi Hoi An is similar to Baguette, but it still has it owns charm and outstanding characteristic. The crust is thinner, and the crumb is also softer and fluffier. With the golden crispy crust and the soft sweet crumb, this combination may blow your mind.

Next thing which makes banh mi Hoi An extraordinary is the filling. It is usually heavier than in other cities with essential ingredients such as jambon, bacon, pate, Vietnamese sausages, well-marinated pork, fried eggs, pickled papaya, herbs, and cucumber. Maybe it sounds like a mess, but trust me, once you taste it, you will know why many people love this combination and even are willing to queue up in long lines of people just to have one. 

Two famous places selling banh mi that most of the visitors come to Hoi An will know, and they were also introduced on CNN travel.


                                                        Banh mi Phuong - Hoi An

- Banh mi Phuong:

Located at 2B Phan Chu Trinh Street, it proudly got a compliment of famous chef Anthony Bourdain: “This is the best banh mi in the world.” With the various versions from vegetarian banh mi to beef banh mi, and the unique flavor, it can satisfy most of the customers that come here to have a taste of Hoi An.


                                                          Banh mi Madam Khanh  - Hoi An

- Madam Khanh – Banh mi Queen:

started her business in 1975, and now, the name of Banh mi Queen gets more and more famous. Mixed between traditional taste and modern flavor, everyone loves the outstanding and incredible savor of banh mi here. The restaurant locates at 115 Tran Cao Van Street, Hoi An.

Note: Banh mi Phuong is probably famous than Madam Khanh amongst tourists. However, if you’re not able to wait so long to have a Banh mi Phuong, then Madam Khanh is also so good for you to change. In my opinion, both brands have equal quality and flavor, and I love them both. 

See more: Boat trip to Villages in Hoi An

3.    Banh bao banh vac

The third dish on my list of what to eat in Hoi An day tour must be banh bao banh vac or you can call White rose dumpling. The name of the dumpling comes from the unique shape and the color of it.


Nowadays, there is only one family that makes white rose dumpling and supplies to all restaurants in Hoi An. To make it, they use a secret recipe, stuffing little round of white rice dough with pork or shrimp and then squeezing them together in shape resembling flowers. It is served with toasty garlic on top and a sweet dipping sauce. “My family has sold this dish for three generations in a row, it means approximately 100 years so far.” – The current owner of the restaurant shared.


                                                           White rose restaurant - Hoi An

To have the best taste in town, you can visit White Rose restaurant at 533 Hai Ba Trung Street where white rose dumpling is made. A small dumpling but has a big punch that can knock out any customer from the first bite. The dumpling is soft but slightly chewy with the sweet from the sauce and savory from the shrimp meat filling, everything combines into a perfect taste that you can never forget.

Does anything get better than cycling around Hoi An in a day tour and stopping by these restaurants to have a taste all of these incredible dishes of this ancient town? Moreover, these dishes will cost you some 1-5usd according to the amount you have. So cheap so tasty to refuel your hungry stomach.

                                                                                                                                                                                  By Anvil Huyen
                                                                                                                                                         Work, Save, Travel, and Repeat


See more: Hoi An beach and ancient town