District 4, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Banh Xeo 46A
This sweet little spot in District 1 specialises (albeit not exclusively) in bánh xèo – ‘sizzling pancakes’ with turmeric, cooked in skillets and filled with the likes of pork, shrimp, mung beans and vegetables, according to taste. Be careful not to over-order – the regular-size crêpes can be big enough for two.
46A Dinh Cong Trang, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Another standout in hectic District 1, tucked away down an alley near Bến Thành Market, is Nam Giao – a long-established restaurant revered for its street-food dishes. Don’t miss the cơm hến (rice with baby clams and shrimp sauce) or the gooey bánh bèo (a steamed rice cake with a crispy shrimp topping)
136/15 Le Thanh Ton, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Of the two basic, similarly named joints famed for their crab dishes, which are located within a few metres of each other in the evolving Bình Thạnh district (which is popular with immigrants), this one receives the most plaudits. That said, there’s not that much in it when it comes to price or quality, so by all means, head down to Quán 94 if this place is full. Expect everything from gleaming whole steamed crabs to crab soup, crab fried noodles and crab-stuffed spring rolls.
Try a bowl of ‘bánh canh cua’ – crab noodle soup, 84 Dinh Tien Hoang Street, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Phan Văn Hân Street
This long and narrow thoroughfare is the place to have something to eat among students from local universities in an intimate, lively and unpretentious atmosphere beneath naked fluorescent lights. Many of the stalls, some set up on residents’ very doorsteps, focus on snails and shellfish, although there’s a vast array to choose from in terms of street-food classics, including bột chiên (fried rice-flour cakes).
Bình Thạnh District, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam