Urbanist Hanoi

in Food Culture

Afro Mini Mart: What's Inside Vietnam’s First African Grocery Store?

At first glance, it looks just like any other convenience store. The same strings of Oishi shrimp snacks and revolving wire rack of Orion Marine Boys adorn either side of its entrance, just as they do at many of the capital city’s corner stores.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Sumptuous Vegetarian Ramen in a Quiet Truc Bach Hideaway

If you’ve ventured to the land of ramen, it’s likely you have a Japan hangover. Vege-ro’s authentic, rich meals could, for a while at least, help you recover.

in Bars & Cafes

Ngõ Nooks: Vegetarian Fusion Food, Artwork and Leafy Surrounds All Feature in This Urban Oasis

In cacophonous cities like Hanoi, spaces that combine greenery with tranquility are vital.

in Bars & Cafes

Ngõ Nooks: In Phủ Cafe, Community Engagement Brings a Sense of Belonging

Three flights of stairs separate the street from Phủ Café’s timeworn interior. Their small sign won’t grab your attention if you’re passing by, but attracting new customers isn’t necessarily the aim.

in Food Culture

A Bún Đậu Mắm Tôm in Singapore That Tastes (and Smells) Just Like Home

Joo Chiat, a neighborhood in the eastern realms of Singapore, is hardly a forgettable area.

in Food Culture

The Unifying Presence of Cái Mâm, Vietnam’s Ubiquitous, Familial Food Tray

An authentic Vietnamese meal cannot be complete without cái mâm.

in Food Culture

Step Inside the Centuries-Old Store Selling Thousands of Sausages and Bánh Chưng

For around 200 years, Quoc Huong store has been selling sumptuous meat delicacies to hungry Hanoians.

in Food Culture

Tarantulas, Scorpions, Crickets Crawl Into Southeast Asia's Mass-Market Edibles

A spade strikes the bone-dry Cambodian dirt with a crunch, and the hunt is on. Chem Wai, a lanky, deeply tanned 53-year-old former soldier, has been collecting wild tarantulas and scorpions for most of his life.

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in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Pandan Jelly and Tapioca Pearls in a Little Bowl of Chè

Chè, the mercurial Vietnamese dessert soup, is appreciated by Hanoians both young and old. Whether wheeled around narrow streets in the Old Quarter, carried on shoulder poles or served in shop fronts ...

in Food Culture

Netizens Call for Boycott of 'Racist' Hoi An Cafe for Refusing to Serve Vietnamese

Many netizens are calling for a boycott of a coffee shop in Hoi An after anecdotes emerged online accusing the place of discriminatory service.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Nourishment for the Soul at Canh Bun Nguyen Sieu

Eating canh bún is akin to going for a walk on a clear day as sunset melts over the city; it costs almost nothing yet nourishes the soul.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Sometimes the Simplest Snacks Are the Most Satisfying

Hanoi’s summer days are unforgiving. On the most intense days, a bullish sun forms thick layers of heat between cement roads and tall, oppressive buildings. Yet here I was, standing in the epicenter o...

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Slurping Thick Noodles and Seafood at Banh Canh Ghe Ut Coi

A whiff of the ocean hits you before you even step foot onto the street. In this curious corner between Quang Trung and Nha Chung, a new form of restaurant exemplifies the vitality and variety of Hano...

in Food Culture

A Brief Guide to Vietnam's Lesser-Known Sweet Sticky Rice Dishes

You may have tried the famed mango sticky rice from Thailand and wondered, “How on earth does this rice go so well with the sweetness of mango and coconut milk?” Usually, some would think of rice as p...

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Hearty Banh Mi From a New-Fashioned Hanoi Co-Operative

Hop Tac Xa Thit Xien is more than just a bánh mì eatery – it’s a place to rekindle your childhood nostalgia and absorb the style of the street.

in Food Culture

Da Nang Just Made Vietnam's Biggest Bánh Xèo, Feeding 200 People

The world has never stopped obsessing over giant food, and Vietnam is no exception.

in Food Culture

Each Vietnamese Consumes 3kg of Beef, 20l of Milk Annually, Minister Says

Despite the country’s rising wealth, Vietnam still consumes a modest amount of beef compared with the world average.

in Bars & Cafes

Ngõ Nooks: Come for the Coffee, Stay for the Aesthetic

Apparently, the owners of Chon want people to find their café. However, you wouldn’t assume as much when attempting to navigate the narrow, snaking alleyways that lead to their joint. You’ll find a do...

in Food Culture

Pizza 4P's Receives Investment From Mekong Capital

Vietnam-focused private equity firm Mekong Capital is injecting an undisclosed amount of investment into Vietnam's widely popular fusion pizza chain.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: The Deep-Fried Satisfaction of Steamy Bánh Gối

Thanks to being born and bred in Hanoi, I definitely have a love-hate relationship with the city. That said, there are more “loves” than “hates” on my list, and street food in Hanoi plays a huge part ...

in Food Culture

Banana Leaves Make Glorious Comeback in Supermarkets Across Vietnam

After straws, Vietnam’s anti-plastic movement now has a new target: plastic grocery wraps.

in Bars & Cafes

Ngõ Nooks: Immerse Yourself in the Traditional Architecture of Cafe Nha San

Nestled deep in a dead-end street reached through a warren of alleyways from an almost impossible-to-see entrance is an ancient-looking building. This stunning traditional Vietnamese stilt-house is on...

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Sumptuous Xôi From One of Hanoi's Friendliest Street Food Vendors

If you live in Vietnam, then you’ll already know how vital rice is here, and the role it plays in almost every meal we eat.

in Food Culture

The Familial Vietnamese Ritual of Making Spring Rolls

“Nem rán (fried spring rolls), or just nem for short, has been a part of life in Hanoi since forever. Whenever I think of this dish, I think of my mother. That is because only nem made at home by my m...

in Bars & Cafes

Ngõ Nooks: Vintage Sound Systems and Birds of Prey Coexist in Café Nhac Xua

A quaint melody drifts out of Nhac Xua and over to one side of West Lake, where café owner Nguyen Duy Binh and I sit. The calming, classical, Vietnamese-style guitar-driven music, is soothing.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: The Dish That Smells Like Regret but Tastes Like Happiness

If you’re a food lover, there is one dirt-cheap, aromatic Hanoi snack that you must try: bún đậu mắm tôm.

in Street Food

Ngõ Nooks: Crispy Fried Eels Complete This Warming Winter Soup

I am Hanoi’s hungriest tourist; and the capital welcomes me into its flavorsome, umami-rich warmth with open arms.

in Food Culture

Da Lat, the Unlikely Home of El Salvador's Rare Pacamara Coffee Beans

In a previous life, Nguyen Van Son was an auto parts salesperson. As a gift of appreciation for his wife, he acquired a seemingly trivial plot of land in Da Lat and made it a place where the family co...