There are literally hundreds of places to eat in Hoi An, from pop-up street food eateries through to quality high-end restaurants. This is the Top-5 selection of restaurants and eateries my customers tell me offer consistent good value-for-money, great food or is a ‘must-try’ when visiting Hoi An.
#1. Mr Son
Situated a few metres off the Thu Bon river in an open building, Mr Son’s is just a couple of tables pushed together that might seat 15-20 people at a push. I know Mr & Mrs Son would accept they are not the youngest couple in Hoi An, but they have really understood and embraced the power of TripAdvisor – their small eatery is consistently busy while others in the same building can be quiet. Mr Son is “front of house” and Mrs Son is head (and only) chef – cooking amazing food in such a tiny area. I think this is Vietnamese food and my people at their best – go try it, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
#2. Tra Que Garden Restaurant
Part of the wonderful Tra Que Herb & Vegetable Village, a few minutes outside of Hoi An ‘old town’ this simple restaurant uses organic produce from their own unique smallholdings. You can sit on a terrace overlooking the rows of fragrant herbs & veg sold into the restaurants and markets of Hoi An. Tra Que offers a short set menu of authentic Vietnamese food and is top-rated on TripAdvisor, which 100% reinforces my customer’s feedback! The Tra Que also run local cooking classes which get great reviews too. Did I mention this is a unique place? That’s because the smallholdings are 100% organic, unique in Vietnam as they use the local river’s seaweed as their fertilizer, no GMO’s or chemicals.
#3. Home Hoi An
Situated just 2 minutes from our ancient Japanese bridge, this is high-end Vietnamese dining in a building reminiscent of the French colonial period. The executive chef showcases authentic Vietnamese cuisine with exquisite service (albeit not at authentic street food prices). This is one of the burgeoning quality restaurants appearing in central Vietnam to cater for the increasing number of wealthy visitors from overseas. Worth a try if you want a special ‘night-out’, and its a helpful place for me because they have upstairs rooms that cater to the larger numbers who visit with me on corporate tours/weddings etc
Run by Xristos, this is a lovely Greek restaurant overlooking the river. The owner is really ‘hands-on’ and ensures his diners experience something special. I’ve taken my own customers and friends here and never been disappointed, and have you eaten anywhere where wait staff will try and stop you ordering – ‘too much, too much’! Well worth a try if you want a break from our Vietnamese fare. Just be careful of the steep staircase up to the WC if you are unsure on your feet.
#5. Phuong Banh Mi
It was way back in 2009 that the late Anthony Bourdain’s ‘No Reservations’ TV show was first screened. But his impact on one of Hoi An’s favourite street snack remains strong to this day. Madam Phuong’s eatery at 2B Phan Chau Trinh is always recognisable by the queue! My customers generally give this Banh Mi (Vietnamese Baguette) the thumbs up, but there are several other great Banh Mi stalls dotted around Hoi An – most certainly a ‘must-try’ experience to see what all the fuss is about!