Hungry in Ho Chi Minh City? Stop by these family-run, old-school eateries for a delicious meal
Pho Minh, 63/6 Pasteur, District 1 (turn into the alleyway beside Liberty Central Hotel); opens at 6.45am, closes at 10am or whenever they run out of pho
A local family has been making pho bo (beef noodle soup; VND50,000, or about P110) at Pho Minh for over 60 years. The mellow ambiance of the alleyway setting is worth the price of admission alone. And once you’ve slurped down the perfect noodles, there’s no harm lingering over an iced coffee.
1 Nguyen Trung Truc, District 1; open 10am to 5pm, but arriving early is recommended
Another long-standing family operation can be found at a French colonial building at 1 Nguyen Trung Truc. The signature dish, bun thit nuong cha gio, is heavenly. In each bowl (VND40,000, or about P88), you’ll find succulent grilled pork, a spring roll, cold rice vermicelli, and herbs and peanuts, doused with spicy fish sauce — the perfect antidote to savory food cravings on a hot afternoon.
5ku Station, 29 Thai Van Lung, District 1, open 5pm until late
When the sun goes down, 5Ku Station, a pop-up bar and grill, comes alive. Run by millennial entrepreneurs, this restaurant reflects an age-old Saigonese dining concept known as nhau (eating and drinking for pleasure) — that means ordering congee, hotpot, barbecue and more (from VND75,000 to VND200,000; or P164 to P437) — to share with friends, and washing everything down with bottles and bottles of cold beer.