Restaurants in Hanoi: Madame Hien

March 31, 2012

In a beautiful French colonial building you will find Madame Hien, a restaurant offering traditional Vietnamese food in Hanoi.

We had a business lunch there (May 2011). Therefore, I could not take many photos of the surroundings and the food. Please forgive me. I promised myself that I would come back to the place when I’m in Hanoi next time.

The gate to Madame Hien

Madame Hien is owned by the celebrated French chef Didier Corlou. He comes from Brittany and owns another restaurant in Hanoi called La Verticale.

The lunch menu

As you can see from the menu above, a three course meal costs about 200,000 Dong only. The dishes one can select offer a wide variety of Vietnamese delicacies.

My main course

I took something light and enticing. As starter I selected the grapefruit salad with prawns, followed by the grilled fish “Cha ca” Madame Hien style. I finished with the cheese “Le Corlou” to honour the chef. All of the dishes were delicious, excellent.

Trip advisor gives 4 of 5 stars to the restaurant. There you will find as of today 210 reviews, 90 of which rank the place as “excellent” and 72 as “very good”.

Unfortunately, the most recent reviewers seem not to have had a good time at the restaurant. No idea what happened. Sure is, that I will come back, next time with a bit more time on my hands, and so that I can have a glass of wine with the food. See you there, maybe.

Address:
Madame Hien
15 Chan Cam, Hoan Kiem District, Hanoi
Between Ly Quoc Su and Phu Doan, just south of Hang Gai
Tel.: +84439381588,


Restaurant review: Quán Ăn Ngon, Hanoi, Vietnam

October 4, 2010

Quán Ăn Ngon and the tents in the garden

My favourite restaurant in Hanoi is Quán Ăn Ngon. When I went there recently I indulged in delicious Vietnamese food. The pity is if you are just one person it is difficult to just grasp the full potential of a Vietnamese meal. Who can eat five-six dishes all by himself?

The place was packed with people when I got there, but the friendly waiters found a table just for myself. I started with a Hanoi beer, then ordered some Chinese rolls, some soup, some salads and had a jolly good time watching the buzzing place and the happy people around me.

Hanoi Beer

My meal

The picture one of the very friendly waiters took of me

Postscript: This is the place to go to when in Hanoi. A people’s place. I just love the food. They have also a branch in Ho-Chi-Min City but I find the Hanoi one much more appealing.

My verdict: five out of five.

Caution: Not much for wine drinkers. Hanoi Beer is the go.

Address:
Quán Ăn Ngon
18 Phan Boi Chau,
Hanoi, Vietnam
Tel.: +84-4-3942-8162
Fax: +84-4-3942-8164‎


Restaurant review: Quan An Ngon, Vietnamese cuisine, Hanoi

June 19, 2010

Even before I discovered Luke Nguyen fabulous Vietnamese cookery book “The Songs of Sapa”, I was a fan of the countries splendid cuisine.

When we walked out of our hotel, we passed by a very busy eatery, full of life, people and somehow a very inviting atmosphere. Well, let’s have dinner there! And in we walked. We were seated at a table with other guests, a Vietnamese family.

“Quan An Ngon” was written on the menu, which was brought to us by friendly waiters (who do not speak much English). So that must be the name of the place, I thought. We browsed through it and ordered some “recognizable” dishes: a fish (mackerel), some dofu/tofu and some green mango salad. I also had some buns, Chinese style, where they are called “mantou” with sweet milk. The drink of our choice was a cool Hanoi Beer.

Delicious mackerel

Green mango salad with peanuts

Dried dofu/tofu with dipp

Hanoi Beer

“Quan An Ngon” traditional Vietnamese restaurant has a large garden part where one can sit outside under tarpaulins but also the inner part of the restaurant, housed in a colonial style building is very appealing and attractive. The cooking is conducted in a kind of roofed “out houses” surrounding the courtyard. I could not resist to take some photos.

The outhouse kitchen

More outhouse kitchen

Lots of happy eaters

The place is usually packed with people, groups of young women, families but many below the age of 30 I would say. We were definitely having a negative impact on the median age of the customers. It’s a noisy place with a lot to look at. Especially for a foreigner who does not have much time to look around it is just a great place to get a feeling of Hanoi and it’s people. I highly recommend a visit.

The price level is modest. We ate for about 120.000 Dong per person. Needless to say, the very next day we went back for another fill of delicious Vietnamese food.

Address:
Quan An Ngon
18 Phan Boi Chau,
Hoàn Kiếm,
Hanoi, Vietnam
Tel.: +84 4 39428162
E-mail: ngonhanoi@vnn.vn i

Directions: Between Ly Thuong Kiet and Hai Ba Trung, one block East of Le Duan.

PS: When writing this story, I found that Quan An Ngon is a kind of a chain restaurant with dependencies also in Ho Chi Minh City.

The restaurant reviews on the internet are not all good. Especially seasoned Vietnam travelers seem to be disgusted somehow and feel that on the street proper, the food is tastier even if less “safe”.

Well, the fact that Quan An Ngon is full with Vietnamese people (my guess 90% of the customers) suggest otherwise.


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