Flavors of Vietnam: Traditional Vietnamese Restaurants in Hanoi


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The capital Hanoi, with more than a thousand years of history, is seen as the kitchen of the northern Vietnam. The Hanoi food is known for the light and balanced taste, resulting from subtle combinations of flavoring ingredients, and from moderating in the use of the 5 basic tastes; sour, spicy, salty, sweet, and bitter.

Hence, Hanoi is the city where you can truly enjoy the traditional Vietnamese cuisine. But in such a lively city that’s so hustle and bustle, where should you look? What if you’re craving authentic experience for lunch and a homestyle Vietnamse food for dinner? Here’s where you can find traditional Vietnamese restaurants in Hanoi.

1. Chả Cá Lã Vọng

If you’re looking for a go-to simple lunch or dinner with the most typical Hanoi food, Chả Cá Lã Vọng is the place for you. This family-run restaurant is known for serving only-one dish, the grilled fish, since 1871.

The hemibagrus (a genus of catfishes) is cut in small chunks before being mariated with fermented rice, tumeric, and galangar. The chunks of marinated fish are first grilled on charcoal, then served on a hot pan whith cooking oil. Dinners will fry the grilled fish with provided fresh dill and spring onion, then eat the fish with rice vermicelli noodles and fish sauce.

Chả Cá Lã Vọng serves their legend dish on its eatery on the family’s second wooden floor, white its first floor shows the family’s altar with portraits of generations who built up the business.

Casual dressing. Air conditioner. Rest room is available. No reservation available. Cash only.


With limited English and local standard of “service”, the staffs at this legend restaurant may sometimes seem abrupt. Don’t bother with it, you’ll enjoy the real local experience.

Cha Ca La Vong Restaurant

cha ca la vong

What to Order

Chả cá (grilled fish) and Hanoi beer.

Brief Info

  • Name: Chả Cá Lã Vọng
  • Address: 14 Cha Ca Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • Hours: 10h00 – 22h00
  • Phone: 091 252 1789 (Mr. Son, limited English)
  • Vegetarian Options: Only grilled fish and rice noodle are available

2. Phở Gia Truyền Bát Đàn

Accordings to locals, this family-run eatery serves one of the best Phở bò (beef noodle soup) at breakfast and in the evernings. Locals are willing to line up to order (pay upfront) and pick their own bowls of the noodle soup, knowing that the marvelous beef stock is good to the last drop!

The lines usually move quickly. The eatery is just steps away from Bia hơi Bát Đàn where locals drink bia hơi (Hanoi draft beer), so if you’re here in the early everning, grab a glass of bia hơi, before or after, and enjoy the lively atmosphere that the Hanoi Old Quarter is famous for.

Casual dressing. No airconditioner. No restroom available. No reservation available. Cash upfront only.


With limited English and rarely speaking a word, members of the family will ask you to pay first, and may sometimes seem abrupt. Just don’t bother with the fuss, their piping hot bowl of beef noodle soup is “pretty damn mind blowing”. 

Best Pho bo in Hanoi Old Quarter

Beef Noodle soup Bat Dan

What to Order

The menu includes three beef cuts: phở tái nạm (rare flank steak), phở tái (rare round steak), and phở chín (well boiled brisket). Also order extra crispy quẩy (fried dough sticks) and trứng gà (poached golden egg yolk), which the locals often have to obliterate the ultimate hunger and to perfect the dish.

Brief Info

  • Name: Phở Gia Truyền
  • Address: 49 Bat Dan Street, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi
  • Hours: 6h00 – 10h00, 17h00 – 21h30
  • Phone: 0966 323 131
  • Vegetarian options: No

3. Quán Ăn Ngon

Quán Ăn Ngon – which means delicious restaurant in Vietnamese – is set in a charming French colonial villa with a full character of the ‘Paris of the East’. The restaurant is spread over two stories with spacious garden-courtyard, creating a lively ambiance that’s packed with both locals and travelers.

The menu is extensive, covering all the country’s regional favorites, and its colorful photographs of each dish will help you make your selection. Dishes are cooked and served from stalls set around the courtyard, which is just like on the street with fresh, flavorful, and authentic cooking.

Casual communal seating at large wooden bench tables. Reservation is recommended. Casual dressing. Cash or credit card are available.

Quan An Ngon Restaurant

Banh Xeo

What to Order

Bánh xèo (Vietnamese pancake with shrimp and pork), Bún chả (grilled pork with rice vermecelli noodle), Phở gà (chicken noodle soup), Bún riêu (rice field crab noodle soup), and Gỏi cuốn tôm thịt (summer roll). For dersert, Chè sương sa hạt lựu (jelly, water chestnut-tapioca pearls & coconut milk), or Chè chuối hấp nước dừa (Steamed banana in coconut milk).

Brief Info

  • Name: Quán Ăn Ngon
  • Address: 18 Phan Boi Chau Street, Hai Ba Trung, Hanoi
  • Hours: 7h00 – 22h00
  • Phone: 0903 246 963
  • Vegetarian options: Yes

4. Tầm Vị

First opened in 2019 by a young Hanoian and her mother, who want to serve traditional Vietnamese home-cooked dishes. This Michelin-star restaurant is a vintage vernacular two-story wooden house, with impressive nostalgic collection of antique, offering a unique dining atmosphere that’s quite rare in Hanoi.

The menu features Northern Vietnamese dishes with some central and southern options, all cooked authentically like the way locals eat at home rather than those prepared for foreign tourists.

Reservation beforehand is recommended. Visitors may wear clean, casual clothing to Tầm Vị, but dressing up is also appropriate. Cash or credit card are available.

Tam vi Restaurant

Tam Vi Restaurant Set Menu

What to Order

The claypot fish, minced pork wrapped in piper lolot leaf, stir-fried morning glory with garlic, stew pork, crispy spring rolls, picked garden eggplants, and rice field crab with Malabar spinach soup, just to name a few, all taste homey eating with steamed rice. Nothing is really fancy, but it tells the food Vietnamese eat daily.

Brief Info

  • Name: Tầm Vị
  • Address: 4B Yen The Street, Dong Da, Hanoi
  • Hours: 11h00 – 14h30, 17h00 – 21h00
  • Phone: 0966 323 131
  • Vegetarian options: Yes

We hope that this list will inspire you to taste for yourself and discover the most traditional Vietnamese food in Hanoi. For greater ways to explore Hanoi and samples street food, contact us to book your private walking food tour with an experienced foodie guide.


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