December food fest to promote Saigon's Chinatown

By Nguyen Quy   November 1, 2019 | 03:06 am PT
December food fest to promote Saigon's Chinatown
Dim sum is an indispensable part of the Chinese community's culinary culture in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by Shutterstock/Ha My.
Saigon’s District 5 and ride-hailing firm Grab will organize a food festival in December to promote culinary traditions of the Vietnamese-Chinese community.

District 5 is home to the largest Chinese-Vietnamese community in the city.

The ‘Cho Lon-Food Story’ festival will release a photo book, a series of videos and publish wall photos about the culinary diversity of the Chinese community in Ho Chi Minh City.

The festival would be a rare chance for locals and foreign tourists to see how the Vietnamese-Chinese people preserve their long-standing traditions, in particular through their culinary culture.

Cho Lon, often referred to as the largest Chinatown in Vietnam, straddles four districts today: 5, 6, 10 and 11.

The fest will also highlight and award the top ten people-voted dishes in Cho Lon.

Food stalls at the event will sell everything from appetizers, main courses and desserts to various kinds of street food that have defined the Cho Lon area.

Visitors will be able to enjoy the food while admiring photos, sketchbooks and other forms of art exhibited throughout the event.

Cho Lon has earned its reputation as the home of a 300-year-old food culture that combines staples and specialties from Chinese provinces like Guangdong, Hainan and Chaozhou with Vietnamese influences.

The festival aims to highlight many Chinatown attractions including the 250-year-old Thien Hau Lady Pagoda and the iconic Binh Tay Market, thus boosting local businesses, including restaurants, thereby promoting Vietnam’s Chinese-style cuisine among local and foreign tourists.

HCMC received more than six million foreign visitors in the first nine months of this year, up 14.3 percent from a year ago. The city hopes to get 8.5 million visitors this year, 14 percent more than last year.

Hanoi and HCMC were named among the top 20 travel destinations in the Asia-Pacific region on the annual Asia Pacific Destinations Index compiled by Mastercard in September.

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