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Michael Tatarski

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: The D5 Beefsteak Joint That Means Business

There is no shortage of restaurants slinging beef-based dishes in Saigon, but every now and then one comes along and stands out from the pack.

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Co Huoi and Her West-of-the-Border Delights

One of my favorite Saigon pastimes is wandering around strange neighborhoods. If you’re feeling lost or bored or lonely or just a little too comfortable, have someone drop you off in a district you do...

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: The Life-Changing Beauty of Bánh Cuốn Trứng

If I have to drive eight kilometers across the city to get breakfast, it’d better be damn good.

Michael Tatarski

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Pasteur Street's Well-Hidden Cơm Trưa Mother Lode

Every once in a while, you come across a simple Vietnamese restaurant that absolutely blows you away.

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: D5's Bò Xào Sa Tế, a Feast for All the Senses

Saigon is changing at a dizzying rate, and so is its food scene: forget about your favorite café or restaurant for a few months and you can come back one day to find it replaced by a convenience store...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Quan 249’s Wondrous Cơm Chiên Emporium

It’s 6pm on a Thursday, and I’m up to my eyeballs in cơm chiên. Page after page, Quan 249’s excessively handled menu features a laundry list of fried rice combinations, some you’ve heard of, some you ...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: To Chan's Noodle Soup Offers Comfort in a Bowl

If you turn up to a hủ tiếu spot anywhere in this city and there is not a hand-painted, wooden noodle cart taking up one corner of the venue, you may want to think twice about sitting down.

Michael Tatarski

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: D5's Glorious Com Tam Is the Perfect Drunk Food

Saigon is a city of a million cơm tấm carts, meaning it is easy to pick one at random and chow down. But some stand out from the crowd.

Michael Tatarski

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Anh Tư's Dreamy Grilled Chicken in Binh Thanh

Around the Saigoneer office I've become the go-to scribe when it comes to chicken-related Hẻm Gems. Therefore, when a friend described a Binh Thanh-based restaurant with dozens of chickens hanging abo...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: An Excursion to Tan Dinh's Secret Bún Hideout

Life is slow in the jungle of hẻms that branches out from Dinh Cong Trang Street. Here, a bún establishment offers noodles of northern heritage using recipes handed down through generations of family....

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: The Balanced Beauty of Bacon and Fried Rice

Our dining experience at A Lung was remarkably simple: there was no turning back when we saw bacon on the menu.

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Chicken Noodles in Phu Nhuan's Flower Neighborhood

Located deep in the heart of Phu Nhuan District’s “flower” neighborhood, Mi Ga Lua Hong offers up a solid addition to Saigon’s host of chicken-centric dishes: a fried chicken drumstick with dry, green...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: An Expedition to D2's Hole-in-the-Wall Mexican Joint

On the modest patio in front of Simple Place, a charming little hole-in-the-wall in District 2, my Spanish coworker Victor launches into a stirring speech about tacos.

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: A Bún Bò Breakfast in D3

Tucked away in a narrow storefront along District 3’s Nguyen Thien Thuat is a mean bowl of breakfast bún bò Huế.

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Cô Khanh's Vegetarian Banquet and a Trip Down Memory Lane

On days when the thought of biting into a slab of greasy fried pork fills your gut with mild disgust, Saigon’s scores of vegetarian eateries are exactly what you need to cleanse your palate.

Michael Tatarski

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Grilled Chicken With a Side of Jet Fuel

In the pantheon of great street food locations in Saigon, many of my favorite places to chow down can barely even be considered restaurants. Is there really a need for four walls and real furniture wh...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Beef and Booze at Lau Bo Co Thao

The alley where cô Thao has set up shop isn’t worth remembering. A high concrete wall runs down one side, reflecting the sun that’s sapping our energy on this hot, dusty Friday afternoon, while the ot...

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Refreshing Chè at Hiển Khánh, a 60-Year-Old Retro Hangout

Relishing a bowl of assorted chè at Thach Che Hien Khanh is more than just an afternoon spent shooting the breeze with friends, it’s also a trip down memory lane and an exploration into Saigon’s herit...

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: Loriekot’s Filipino Fare in the Heart of Saigon

In Saigon, there are plenty of places you don’t see when you’re breezing by on a motorbike. If you are (hopefully) focused on the road ahead, the narrow shopfronts and modest quán lining most Saigon s...

Khoi Pham

in Saigon Hẻm Gems

Hẻm Gems: A Perfect Plate of Cơm Trưa by the River

In Saigon, cơm trưa is more than just a meal: it’s also a cultural trait, a community and, at times, a serious business, all wrapped up in a plate of freshly cooked rice and perfectly caramelized chun...