Don't miss these Da Lat dishes

Created 21 January 2023
  • PDF
Editor Choice
Share
(0 votes, average 0 out of 5)

Lemongrass stuffed snails, shumai bread, and chicken hotpot are all known for warming the hearts and souls of travelers in the cool mountain town of Da Lat.
Lemongrass stuffed snails are served with ginger fish sauce. Photo by Khanh Thien

Lemongrass stuffed snails - Oc buou nhoi thit

Lemongrass stuffed snails are served with ginger fish sauce. Photo by Khanh Thien

Lemongrass stuffed snails are served with ginger fish sauce. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

This is one of both locals' and tourists' favorite snacks. The snails are cleaned thoroughly, then stuffed with spiced ground pork and a few lemongrass stalks before steaming. The dish's powerful lemongrass brings together the flavors of the snail and ground pork in ways not found in any other dish. Eat these suckers as soon as they are served. They are best piping hot, cooled just enough to eat with a dip – or even a quick soak – in the ginger fish sauce served on the side.

Try these addresses for Da Lat snails: 157 Hai Ba Trung street, 4D-41 Hai Ba Trung street, C5 Tran Le street, 83 Nguyen Van Troi street.

Shumai bread - Banh mi xiu mai

A typical shumai bread order contains a variety of toppings, sides and a salad. Photo by Khanh Thien

A typical shumai bread order contains a variety of toppings, sides and a salad. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

Shumai bread is a popular breakfast dish among locals in Da Lat. The shumai meatballs are made of lean ground pork cooked to perfection. The broth is made from simmered pork bones and is a balance of savory and sweet. A dash of chopped scallions and chilli then spices things up a bit. These tiny bowls of meatballs and broth are then served with dipping sauce and fresh hot bread. A perfect morning combo. At many restaurants, diners can order additional side dishes such as pate and Hue pork rolls.

Try these shumai addresses to find your favorite meatball and bread breakfast spot: 26 Hoang Dieu Street, 79 Bui Thi Xuan Street, 14 Anh Sang Street, 72 Yersin Street.

Crab noodle soup - Bun rieu

Crab noodle soup is served with a side of chopped herbs in Da Lat. Photo by Khanh Thien

Crab noodle soup is served with a side of chopped herbs in Da Lat. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

Although not exactly a regional specialty from Da Lat, crab noodle soup is a great way to insulate yourself against Da Lat’s chilly weather. The crab mixture includes crab paste, egg, wood ear mushroom and ground pork. A bowl of crab noodle soup provides a variety of sensations: the richness of the almost-buttery crab meat, the sweetness of tomatoes and shrimp paste, and the sharp aroma of scallions, bean sprouts and chopped herbs.

Check out these crab noodle soup addresses: 29 Nguyen Van Troi Street, 9N Huynh Thuc Khang Street, 38A Tran Nhat Duat Street, 29 Yersin Street.

Wet rice cake with chicken and tripe - Banh uot long ga

Wet rice cake with chicken and tripe, topped with fried shallots. Photo by Khanh Thien

Wet rice cake with chicken and tripe, topped with fried shallots. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

Wet rice cake with chicken and tripe is one of the oldest dishes in Da Lat. Some restaurants will shred the chicken into thin pieces, but you can always ask that your chicken thighs be kept whole. Diners can also order a side of chicken ovary and gizzards. Combined with a rich and soft rice-flour cake, each item is perfect once dipped in the sweet and sour fish sauce served on the side.

Suggested addresses: 15F Tang Bat Ho Street, 68 Phan Dinh Phung Street, 9 Dong Tam Street, 44 Tang Bat Ho Street.

Beef hotpot - Lau bo

There are various greens served with the beef hot pot. Photo by Khanh Thien.

There are various greens served with the beef hot pot. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

Beef hot pot includes a variety of lean meat, tendons, tails and shackles, accompanied by tofu cut into square pieces with a batch of mixed greens including mustard leaf, napa cabbage, malabar spinach, centella and crowd daisy. Once the meat is cooked, you can eat it with the vegetables, tofu and tasty soup broth. The sweetness of the meat, dipped in a sauce made of chao (fermented tofu) and satay, is perfect on a cool day or night in Da Lat.

Check out these beef hot pot locations: 427/3 Phan Dinh Phung Street, 1/29 Hoang Dieu Street, 14 Nguyen Thi Dinh Street, 15B Quang Trung Street.

Chicken hotpot with basil leaves - Lau ga la e

A full hotpot with chicken, bamboo shoots and mushrooms. And a side of greens. Photo by Khanh Thien.

A full hotpot with chicken, bamboo shoots and mushrooms, and a side of greens. Photo by VnExpress/Khanh Thien

This is a must-try dish in Da Lat and another great compliment to the cold weather here. The chicken hot pot contains a light sweet broth, tender chicken, flavorful mushrooms and soft bamboo shoots with a sharp flavor. Adding some basil leaves gives the soup just a bit more punch and then dipping the chicken meat in spicy chili salt finishes the job.

Where to go for chicken hotpot: 2 Chu Van An Street, 27 Le Dai Hanh Street, 1 Yersin Street, 6 Yersin Street, 28 Huynh Thuc Khang Street.

Grilled pork sausage - Nem nuong

Grilled pork sausage is served with a side of fresh greens and pickled vegetables. Once rolled together, these delicate ingredients are eaten with a special sauce containing, ground pork and beans. Photo by Huynh Nhi

Grilled pork sausage is served with a side of fresh greens and pickled vegetables. Once rolled together, these delicate ingredients are eaten with a special sauce containing, ground pork and beans. Photo by VnExpress/Huynh Nhi

Many travelers in Da Lat rave about the grilled pork sausage here. For this dish, you roll all your ingredients together in rice paper yourself: like a burrito. A serving includes grilled pork sausage, deep-fried rice paper, fresh vegetables and pickles to balance the taste. The dipping sauce is made of liver, shrimp, pork and pureed beans, creating a thick warm coating to your hand-rolled delight.

Where to find the good stuff: 328 Phan Dinh Phung Street, 45 Bui Thi Xuan Street, 150 Bui Thi Xuan Street.

Savory mini pancakes - Banh can

Banh can with meatballs in Da Lat. Photo by Joel Whalton.

Banh can with meatballs in Da Lat. Photo by Joel Whalton

Banh can is a fluffy rice cake with a thin crust filled with egg, minced beef or squid. The pancake is served with a broth of shumai meatballs, which have a balanced amount of lean meat and fat, and a lot of green onions. Banh can is kept hot on the stove, so it always exudes a nice aroma. A warm serving of crispy pancakes, eaten with a savory dipping sauce, satisfies both the palate and the belly.

Try some banh can at these addresses: 27/44 Yersin Street, 15A Nguyen Bieu Street, 30 Tang Bat Ho Street, 5 Ba Thang Tu Street.

Grilled rice paper - Banh trang nuong

Crispy grilled rice paper. Photo by Huynh Nhi

Crispy grilled rice paper. Photo by Huynh Nhi

These "Da Lat Pizza" can be topped with any variety of ingredients, but pork floss, cheese and sausage are the most popular ways to flavor this grilled rice paper dish. In Da Lat, banh trang nuong is often sold at no-frills locations. Be prepared to sit on a low plastic chair or stool, sometimes streetside not far from the buzzing traffic. You can watch the cook at work, fanning his fire's flames, whisking eggs and flipping his rice papers cooking above the red embers of his (sometimes improvised, makeshift) charcoal grill. In the cold weather of Da Lat, enjoying hot crispy grilled rice paper in the evening is an experience that won't be forgotten.

Suggested addresses: 26 Hoang Dieu Street, 61 Nguyen Van Troi Street, 180 Bui Thi Xuan Street, 89 Hoang Hoa Tham Street.


Source: VNE

Maybe You Also Interesting :

» Mekong Delta among world's 25 hottest destinations this year: Australian magazine

Australian travel site Traveller has included Vietnam's Mekong Delta, home to unique floating markets, among the 25 best places to go in 2023.

» Hanoi coffee shop among world's quirkiest: US weekly magazine

Newsweek has placed The Note Coffee in Hanoi on a list of the world's quirkiest coffee shops.

» Braised pork and stuffed bitter melon soup at Tet: The meaning behind them

Braised pork with duck eggs and stuffed bitter melon soup have long been associated with regional characteristics and spiritual elements of southern Vietnamese...