Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

By Hoang Phong   December 23, 2022 | 11:00 pm PT
Check out this list of 10 Vietnamese bars and restaurants – mostly in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City – that received rave reviews from international travel magazines this year.
Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

In July, Rice Market Restaurant at Regent Phu Quoc Resort on the southern island Phu Quoc was voted among the best new Vietnamese establishments by U.S. magazine Travel + Leisure.

The restaurant serves iconic Vietnamese dishes like pho (pictured) and rice paper rolls, alongside Chinese classics like dim sum, char siu fried pork rice and Beijing-style roasted duck.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

The fine dining Vietage restaurant, which serves train passengers along the Da Nang-Quy Nhon line was also praised by Travel + Leisure.

The restaurant offers foie gras with local farm-to-table onions from Ly Son Island off the Da Nang coast. The dining car’s freshly cracked black pepper comes from Phu Quoc and the eatery’s signature seafood salad and fish sauce are both made with ingredients sourced fresh from the local waters off the picturesque beaches of Quy Nhon.

Launched by Anantara Hotels in 2020, the luxurious six-hour train route carries no more than 12 passengers and runs through popular tourist hotspots in Da Nang, Hoi An, Quang Ngai and Quy Nhon.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

The gourmet Chinese restaurant Kabin in HCMC was the only Vietnamese gastronomic experience on TripAdvisor’s list of Asia's 25 Best Fine Dining Restaurants released in September this year.

Located on the second floor of the Renaissance Riverside Hotel in downtown HCMC, the restaurant ranked 24th on the 2022 annual Tripadvisor Travelers' Choice Best of the Best Awards, which are decided by an algorithm that analyzes millions of reviews and ratings collected annually from travelers around the world.

Its signature dishes include steamed fresh prawn dumplings, deep fried prawns with salted egg yolk, and Peking duck (pictured).

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

In November, American magazine Condé Nast Traveler lauded A Ban Mountain Dew on Tran Phu Street in Ba Dinh District as among the four best new restaurants in Hanoi.

The owner is a native of Lang Son Province, and thus the restaurant specializes in dishes from the northern mountainous hinterlands of Vietnam.

The interior décor takes its inspiration from ethnic minority cultures in Vietnam’s northern highlands, including images of rice terraces, village streams and clouds embracing mountain peaks.

The restaurant's menu includes xoi ngu sac (five-color sticky rice), grilled meat, com lam (sticky rice cooked in a bamboo tube), hotpots, as well as new fusions such as pizza topped with bamboo worms.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

Condé Nast Traveler readers also voted Chapter Dining & Grill Hanoi as one of the best fine dining restaurants in the capital.

The restaurant opened earlier this year on Chan Cam Street in Hoan Kiem District and specializes in rare delicacies such as raw prawns, Wagyu beef tartare, raw oysters and unique mushroom dishes.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

In May, Stir Bar in Ho Chi Minh City was the only Vietnamese representative on the William Reed Business Media 2022 Asia’s 50 Best Bar List.

Located on Le Thanh Ton Street in District 1, the bar stays open till 2 a.m. and has small and cozy nooks for couples.

The bar offers a wide range of classic cocktails prepared by famed award-winning mixologists. Stir bartenders won big awards in 2019, including the "World Class Vietnam 2019 Mixology Champion" prize and the "World Cocktail Battle 2019 Champion" award.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

In November, Kuusi by Tung on Quang Trung Street in Hanoi's Hoan Kiem District was also named one of the bets new bars by American readers of Condé Nast Traveler.

This exclusive venue offers just 12 seats.

Guests are treated with a two-hour cocktail experience of five drinks paired with a series of gastronomic snacks created by Chef Tung and his team.

The first floor has six seats with snuggly-placed highchairs while the mezzanine area offers a sofa for four people.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

Condé Nast Traveler readers also selected The Haflington on Hang Ma Street in Hanoi's Old Quarter as one of the best new bars in Vietnam.

Designed as a private museum with typical European architecture, the bar showcases rows of glass vitrines and a whiskey tasting counter with an adjoining club-style smoking lounge.

The two-story bar’s main floor offers a comfortable space for guests to sit and hang out together while the basement is designated for those seeking privacy.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

Trieu Institute on Mac Thi Buoi Street in Ho Chi Minh City's District 1 was another watering hole voted by Condé Nast Traveler readers one of the best in Vietnam’s major southern metropolis.

The bar’s design takes its inspiration from its eponymous heroine Ba Trieu, a third-century warrior that repelled invaders from the China’s Eastern Wu Dynasty.

Trieu’s balcony allows guests to watch the bustling Saigon nightlife below.

In addition to serving cocktails, the bar also offers cuisine such as grilled octopus and Black Angus steak.

Critics’ 10 favorite bars & restaurants in Vietnam

Phantom of The Opera on Ho Chi Minh City’s Hai Ba Trung Street was another American reader favorite in 2022.

It’s central location adjacent to Nguyen Hue Pedestrian Boulevard just behind the Saigon Opera House used to be the city's largest opium factory.

The interior is decorated with rows of dressing room lights and shimmering glass cupboards of alcohols and elixirs.

The bar is open from 6 p.m. until 2 a.m.

Photos courtesy of the bars and restaurants

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