Saigoneer

The Distinctly Da Lat Comfort of Bonding Over Coffee Beans

After a two-year stint as an English teacher in Saigon, Nick Melhuish decided that it was time to call it quits. He moved to Da Lat with his partner Brianna and his dog Sausage to open a bed & breakfast and roastery called the London Saigon Coffee Company.

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Hẻm Gems: A Bowl of Hanoi's Southern-Style Bún Bò in the South

Fabien from France and Trang from Hanoi led a very different life just a year ago. They were running a Vietnamese restaurant nearly 12,000 kilometers away from Saigon, in Morocco.

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Da Lat, the Unlikely Home of El Salvador's Rare Pacamara Coffee Beans

In a previous life, Nguyen Van Son was an auto parts salesperson. As a gift of appreciation for his wife, he acquired a seemingly trivial plot of land in Da Lat and made it a place where the family could cultivate flowers as a summer hobby. But things changed when he was approached by some cunning businessmen who convinced him to grow coffee for quick cash: he was sold trees that never produced cherries.

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[Photos] Into the Backyard Rice Wine Distilleries of Long An

The highway eases into sand and gravel the way history descends into myth and legend when traveling towards Long An. A mere 27 kilometers outside of Saigon, the province feels a world away: the difference between a cocktail made with 18-year-old scotch, jackfruit-infused rum, seven types of bitters and brandy-soaked organic cherries and a plastic water bottle of homemade rượu nếp. The latter was the reason we were going there: for information, interviews and anecdotes to complete Saigoneer’s two-part investigation of the history of rice wine.

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In Saigon, a Quest for Sustainable, Healthy Coffee Consumption Is Brewing

The first moment I spotted the crisp blue door on Truong Dinh Street in District 3, I was drawn to it. I wanted to go in. And so I did, not knowing that I was opening the door into the world of sustainable Vietnamese coffee.

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A History of Rice Wine, Part 2: A Traditional Craft Slowed to a Trickle

Rose-tinted shades and long swept-back hair tickling the collar of a half-unbuttoned maroon shirt that revealed a dangling peace-sign pendant: at age 27, Minh was the epitome of 70s Saigon cool. More than that, though, he was one the most famous rice wine producers in Long An, a province renowned for its traditional liquor production. After Minh moved from the big city to his wife’s home village, her family discovered his natural talent and passed on their distilling knowledge which he spent decades perfecting.

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The Unexpected Delight of Italian Baked Tarts in Misty Da Lat

As Da Lat’s wet season comes to a close, cool weather and sunshine greet local and foreign visitors on a daily basis. People from colder cities such as Hanoi appreciate Da Lat’s comfortable average of 18°C, while dwellers of notoriously warm places such as Saigon plan weekend retreats to escape the heat.

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Packaged Identities: How Curry Powder Made Its Way From India Into Vietnamese Homes

Step inside the kitchen of any household in Saigon and chances are that you will find one or two ready-made curry powder packets in a cupboard waiting for the family's next weekend treat of cà ri gà (chicken curry).

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The First Annual Saigoneer Golden Plastic Stool Awards for Best Hẻm Gems

As the planet-wide dumpster fire that was 2018 comes to a close, we’d like to take a moment to look back at the year in Hẻm Gems through our first-ever Golden Plastic Stool Awards. These will honor some of our favorite local eateries from the past 12 months across four categories: Best Vietnamese Food, Best Non-Vietnamese Food, Best Ambiance and Best Cafe/Bar. We’ll also take a moment to honor our favorite Hẻm Gems that were shuttered this year.

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[Illustrations] From Street Snacks To Homecooked Meals, Vietnam's Diverse Cuisine Illustrated

While bánh mì or cơm tấm are considered quintessential Vietnamese dishes, bowls of homecooked cà ri gà (Vietnamese chicken curry) or thịt kho tàu (caramelized pork and eggs) are also central to the country's eating culture. 

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Polish-Vietnamese Student Becomes Latest Winner of MasterChef Poland

Following in the footstep of the previous winner of MasterChef US Christine Ha, a Polish-Vietnamese student recently won the top prize of Poland’s version of the cooking show.

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