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Lemongrass: The best local fine-dining joint in town
What do you do when you're dining alone in a strange city on the first night? Well, live it up of course and go to the best restaurant in town!
Thanks to the helpful Caravelle hotel staff, I found a lovely place to enjoy my first dinner in town. All these within a block of where I was staying...
What I liked about the place :
1) The ambience was softly romantic. Too bad I was alone! Decorated french-styled, this two storeyed restaurant had soft candle-lights and soothing tunes from traditional instuments.
2)Very attentive service from English-speaking waiters. I guess those fellas took pity on this lone diner and gave extra attention to me.
Favorite Dish: 1)Steamed spring rolls
2)Spicy seafood soup
3)Delicious desserts and coffee.
TIP:The beef pho was only so-so and paled in comparison to the cheaper one I had at Pho Hoa.
Back to what I was saying, I especially love the lovely spring rolls as they were decorated very artistically. More importantly, they taste heavenly! I found whole chunks of lovely big prawns inside, yum....
To see more picture of Vietnamese food, click on b'packer's restaurant tip page
Lemongrass: Rice Paper Rolls - Lemongrass Rest.
I've deliberately put this picture here so that you can see in contrast the styles in which the spring roll is served. This yummy roll was taken at Lemongrass, a fine-dining establishment whereas the previous one was served street-style. Anyway, the one at lemongrass cost me less than US$4. Cheap and good !
To see more delicious picture of Vietnamese food, click on b'packer's hcmc page
Favorite Dish: Haha, you're definitely in luck if you're reading this. In my sneaky ol' bpacker style, I've autopsied the roll at Lemongrass and figured out what makes it so good. Here's what I found out and since I've tried this at home. Let me assure you it's bloody good.
Leomongrass Rice Paper Rolls
2)Asian Lettuce.Wash and seperate leaves
3)Tiger Prawns, boiled, de-shelled and sliced into two. Save water after boiling
4)Roasted peanuts, ground
7)Garlic Chilli Sauce ( optional)
8) A plate of lukewarm water
9)Finest grade Vermicelli, boiled in prawn water ( see #3 )
10) Carrots and Cucumber, sliced jullienne
11) Fermented Fish Sauce
12) Asian mint , spring onion or basil
Begin sadistically by boiling the prawns alive and filleting them. If this horrible to you or if you're living somewhere near the Arctic circle make do with with the small boiled ones. Of course, don't be daft and sliced the small buggers for gdness' sake. Use them whole. Save the briny prawn water after this and boil your vermicelli.
While your noodles are cookin', slice your carrots and cucumber into toothpicks and make your magically delicious sauce. Here's how..mix hoisin sauce together with a dash of garlicky chilli sauce and stinky fish sauce. Of course, the sauce will stink to high heavens but that is what makes the sauce gd! After that, sprinkle the ground peanuts on the sauce.
Now, your noodles should be ready. Drain it really dry.
Now for the real thing! Dip the rice paper quickly unto the lukewarm water. After that, put 3 chunky slices of prawn on the paper and slap a lettuce leaf on it. Pluck some vermicelli, mint, basil leaves carrot and cucumber and put it on top of the leaf. Fold the papery sides next and the bottom. Roll the thing like a scroll next till it's tight. There you go. Voila!
To eat, dunk it in the fish sauce and bite into the juicy goodness.
Lemongrass: More Local Food
We were walking around the area near our hotel, looking for food, and we found this nice little restaurant.
After tasting the steamed spring rolls at Sinh Cafe, we wanted more..and we were delighted to see that this restaurant served a different version - instead of prawns or pork / chicken, the filling was grilled beef. Our verdict? Good! We also ordered two other main courses, but this dish was simply the best.
Favorite Dish: The spring roll with grilled beef filling!
Lemongrass: A very popular place ...
A lovely small three-story restaurant on a street with several good ones including Pho 24 [see next tip] It is considered upscale and touristy, but serves some of the best food in the city.
Favorite Dish: The grilled beef salad with mango [pictured] was rather nice :)
Lemongrass: Nice Restaurant, Great Vitnamese Food
We found the food and service to be excellent at this restaurant. It is a small narrow building with 3 floors used for dining. We were taken up the stairs to the 2nd floor and seated at a small table next to the only window. The restaurant had recently been renovated, the walls painted, nice tables in this simple narrow room.
An extensive menu with several specials highlighted at the front. We commenced with 2 starters which we shared, pork and vegetable spring rolls and I think my wife ordered kebabs, both coming with the appropriate sauces.
For main course we had 2 local meals which were very nice, accompanied by a large bottle of imported sparkling water.
This is a very popular restaurant and I noticed there were several large groups who most likely were on tour. I recommend that you reserve a table, you will not be disappointed. The restaurant is recommended by Lonely Planet Guide.
- Food and Dining
- Budget Travel
- Women's Travel
Lemongrass: Great Vietnamese food
A great little restaurant, tucked away in a side street but very findable
Food is Vietnamese and of good quality.
I had 2 fish dishes ther the Deep fried fish and the claypot fish stew. Both very good.
Favorite Dish: Claypot Fish Stew - very fresh fish
Lemongrass: If you want to splurge....
This was actually much better than I had expected - most of the time when one spends some extra cash on dinner you can get the same thing, better quality, for much cheaper on the street. I have to admit though this place was through and through very good.
Favorite Dish: We had chao tom, grilled pork ribs, goi cuon and one other dish - all were excellent.
Lemongrass: Pull Out The Fancy Digs
Lemongrass if one of the fancier Vietnamese Restaurants in Saigon. Its a nice place to spend a quiet evening with your significant other. Its a small place, dimly lit with candles and small intimate tables. Its located in one of the more expensive areas around the Sheraton Hotel. The service is impeccable and the waiters will show you the proper Vietnamese way to eat the dishes you order.
The food is very good but like the rest of the restaurant the dishes are fancier. No real pho or vermicelli dishes here. This is Vietnamese fare presented with high class here.
Favorite Dish: We had Lemongrass Chicken which was very tasty. We also had a soup that was much like Thai Tom Yum soup but less spicy and much sweeter. I can't exactly remember the name but I think it was called their seafood soup. It was chucked full of wonderful seafood like clams and white fish, shrimp, crab, and oysters.
- Romantic Travel and Honeymoons
- Food and Dining
Lemongrass: Easy menu and hot spot for Vietnamese food
They have set of ("suggestive") menus starting at $8/person. We chose to pick ala carte and this is what we ate that night for light dinner. Bean sprouts with chives, chicken sate, fried spring rolls and banana fritters with fruit drinks total of U$21.64.
Service style was adequate and not overly intrusive. A fusion of French and Vietnamese decor and architecture. They have a somewhat limited menu and space so I suggest reserving a space ahead of time or arriving very early.
Informal setting but more upscale than a regular pho house. No preferred attire but I suggest that you skip the shorts and slippers/crocs.
Favorite Dish: The bean sprouts with mushrooms and chives is very fresh and light.
The sate has a lemony, sweet salty taste.
- Food and Dining
Lemongrass: Expensive and definitely not the best
This is a place that is closely located in the center of town and easy to get to, but if you want real authentic Vietnamese food, then this is not the place. There is minimal atmosphere with the exception of someone playing live music. The food is not particularly memorable. I went with a big group and therefore ordered quite a bit of different dishes on the menu. There are 1 or 2 tasty items like the beef salad roll, but overall you can go to places like Wrap and Roll and get the same or better and much cheaper. You know it is a tourist restaurant when you go in and pretty much all the patrons are not local. I was really disappointed at the steam clams that was overcooked and drowned in a creamy white sauce. Expensive prices too. Give this a miss.
Lemongrass/Vietnam House: The 'Lemon Grass' and 'Vietnam House'
A good Vietnamese restaurant is the Lemon grass, which provides tempting dishes and a traditional oriental interior. On the corner, opposite the Cathay Pacific building is Vietnam House. This 2-floor restaurant has good local cuisine set in quaint colonial surroundings. There are also countless noodle shops all over the place for those seeking the real deal.
- Budget Travel
- Family Travel
Lemongrass: Expensive/nothing unique
Go and eat here just for the bragging right. Seems to be popular with travel guides/books. but nothing really unique, it is just like any vietnamese restaurant in your own city. The food are expensive compared to other local restaurant.
- Historical Travel
- Family Travel
- Food and Dining
Lemongrass, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam: poor atmosphere
Recommended by our hotel and various members in this and other web sites. We had expected a great experience. But a plain and poorly decorated bland room on the 3rd floor. Almost no atmosphere except the loud Singaporeans on the next table [not a positive note]. The service was quick and professional though rather cool. The food was excellent and we enjoyed a number of unusual specialities including a mixed seafood salad as a starter. At D650,000 this was quite expensive [soft drinks and 2 beers] and with a dull atmosphere one we would have best not experienced. For the price - 4 times more than other restaurants we ate in it wasn't worth the visit.
Favorite Dish: seafood salad - a daily special
- Family Travel
The Lemongrass: A memorable experience
I am writing this tip long after my visit so it may be of no earthly use to anyone. I remember an attractive building, enjoyable food and picturesque musicians playing almost unobserved in the background. I looked this place up on Tripadvisor hoping to find a photo like mine to confirm I am writing about the right place. I found mixed reviews from fantastic to tourist trap. I do not specifically remember my meal here but I have extremely positive memories about all the food I had in Vietnam with the exception of the 1000 year old egg I inadvertendly added to my congee in Hanoi then automatically spat out across the breakfast table much to the shock of the other guests.
- Food and Dining
Lemongrass: Authentic South Vietnamese Cuisine (1)
This will be a two part tip with more pictures of the Lemongrass Restaurant.
The Lemongrass Restaurant is a high end Restaurant in District 1 that Serves Authentic, Non Fusion Vietnamese Cuisine from all the Regions of Southern and Central Vietnam. Due to the popularity of this restaurant, specially to western and asian tourists who comprise the majority of the Clientele, they have set up another branch at the 14th floor of the Palace Hotel, serving the Same Menu. Both restaurants and the Palace Hotel is owned by the huge Saigon Tourist Company, under their division of the Bong sen Restaurant Group, which owns many of the hotels, Restaurants, the Biggest Tour Company in Saigon.
The Main Branch is currently under renovation but is still packed with people dining and there is a waiting list outside. The atmosphere is candlelit and intimate, very Vietnamese, with cane furniture and tile floors, yet its three floors of subdued dining are a still a nice place to Dine, but unlike it's sister restaurant, the Vietnam House Restaurant, they don't have a cultural show inside. The place can sit up to 80 people on the first floor and the third floor (second floor is under renovation). The Menu here is almost the same as in the Vietnam House Restaurant but they have more set menus for every budget.
Opens: 11:00 am to 2:00 p, and 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm everyday.
Favorite Dish: what else but my favorite south vietnamese specialties like the Cua Lot (deep fried soft shelled crab), the Go Hai San (seafood vermicelli noodle), the Chao Tom (prawns in sugarcane sticks), Canh Do Bien (sour seafood soup) assorted Vietnamese Spring Rolls (goi cuon) and more.
ala carte dishes like an order of Cua lot will cost 280,000 VND an order, Lobsters at 560,000 VND an order. Tiger Prawns in Coconut Juice and Nut at 450,000 VND. Drinks start at 10,000 VND for a glass of Jasmine Tea and 40,000 VND for an Orangina Soft Drink.
Set Meals go from 350,000 VND for the cheapest set and up to 550,000 VND for the most expensive set with drinks not included.
- Food and Dining
- Wine Tasting
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