Ho Chi Minh City Restaurants

Dining options in Ho Chi Minh City run the gamut from fine dining in secluded air-conditioned splendor to sidewalk eateries where the food is cooked in makeshift open-air kitchens. The dynamism and energy of the city is reflected in a dining scene bursting with international options and a host of fusion choices in between.

The city's middle classes love nothing more than descending on the latest dining craze, so do note locals' recommendations and follow the crowds to the latest hotspot. Despite the Saigonese's love for the flashy "new next big thing," there's also a somewhat reluctant loyalty to the French cuisine of their former colonial rulers. Ho Chi Minh City is home to many French restaurants, from casual Parisian-style bistros to the full starched linen and paired wine experience. Most of Ho Chi Minh City's international restaurants are in and around Districts 1 and 3, although there are several excellent options in the expat areas of Districts 2 and 7.

Despite the international offerings, it's the mouthwatering Vietnamese cuisine that remains one of Ho Chi Minh City’s major draws, whether eaten on the street or indoors in a tourist-friendly restaurant—the places with English menus are not always the most authentic, but can be the easiest when it comes to placing an order. But street food and no-frills, family-run restaurants offer incredible value, so after, say, a humble bowl of pho for breakfast and a host of southern specialties for lunch, you can easily justify a splurge for dinner.

Meals are serious business in Ho Chi Minh City, and between noon and 1 pm most office workers and public servants take a lunch break. Dinner is generally served any time after about 6 pm and eating (and drinking) can continue until 1 am or later.

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  • 1. Hoa Tuc

    $$$ | District 1 | Vietnamese

    The name translates as opium poppy, and this chic little eatery is in a corner of the former La Manufacture d'Opium, the French-controlled opium...Read More

  • 2. Jane's Bistro

    $$$ | District 7 | Italian

    Reservations are essential at this charming 20-seat modern American-Italian restaurant, where guests are treated like friends, not customers...Read More

  • 3. Racha Room

    $$$ | District 1 | Asian

    One of the hippest eateries in town, the Racha Room serves up Thai fusion food as well as artisanal cocktails (prepared by a mixologist imported...Read More

  • 4. Temple Club

    $$$ | District 1 | Vietnamese

    The charming and atmospheric Temple Club, which occupies a heritage building that was formerly the guest quarters for the Hindu temple across...Read More

  • 5. Xu

    $$$ | District 1 | Vietnamese

    A posh restaurant-lounge serving traditional Vietnamese food, fine wines, and highly creative cocktails might seem a bit incongruous, but Xu...Read More

  • 6. Cuc Gach

    $$$ | District 1 | Vietnamese

    Serving traditional Vietnamese dishes with an emphasis on healthy, environmentally friendly eating, Cuc Gach has succeeded in carving out its...Read More

  • 7. District Federal

    $$$ | District 2 | Mexican

    There's a great atmosphere as well as great food at District Federal, the only place in town with a Mexican chef cooking authentic Mexican cuisine...Read More

  • 8. Hoi An Restaurant

    $$$ | District 1 | Vietnamese

    Designed to look like a beautiful "ancient house" from Hoi An with a high teak ceiling, dark wooden furniture, and silk lanterns, this restaurant...Read More

  • 9. Mad Cow Wine & Grill

    $$$ | District 1 | Steakhouse

    They're serious about food and mad about wine at Mad Cow, an inviting and unpretentious produce-driven restaurant that has a strong focus on...Read More

  • 10. The Elbow Room Bistro and Bar

    $$$ | District 1 | American

    A friendly little bistro that wouldn't be out of place in New York, serving up hearty all-day breakfast, burgers, sandwiches, pizzas, and pastas...Read More

  • 11. Le Bouchon de Saigon

    $$$ | District 1 | French

    This French bistro ticks all the right boxes, with red gingham tablecloths, friendly staff, a free glass of sparkling wine on arrival, and a...Read More

  • 12. Blanchy Street

    $$$ | District 1 | Japanese

    Japanese fusion cuisine here is inspired by chefs' experience at Michelin-starred Nobu in London. Martin Brito and Yogo Oba have created a menu...Read More

  • 13. La Fenêtre Soleil

    $$$ | District 1 | International

    A Ho Chi Minh City institution that's outlasted many flash-in-the-pan dining and entertainment ventures over the years, La Fenêtre Soleil is...Read More

  • 14. Lucca

    $$$ | District 1 | Italian

    Downstairs is an atmospheric wine bar, upstairs is a classy Italian restaurant that wouldn't seem out of place in New York. Here, you'll find...Read More

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