Nov 2007

Bánh Xèo 46A – Ho Chi Minh City


November 16, 2007
Cuisine: Vietnamese

46A Dinh Cong Trang Street
District 1, Ho Chi Minh City

Phone: (04) 824 1110
Website: none

Goi Cuon (50,000 VND)

Cha Gio (50,000 VND)

Banh Xeo Dac Biet (35,000 VND)

Everyone and their mother knows about Banh Xeo 46A. What was once a local joint with a dash of tourists has become the premiere destination for Vietnamese crepes in the city.

Job well done to the PR folks behind this restaurant.

Based on a recommendation from a fellow Viet Kieu, I visited on a Friday night with The Astronomer and our friend Zach. The metal tables and patio seating reminded me of eating lunch in the quad back in high school.

The eatery was bumpin’ the entire time we were there, which was cool because big crowds equal sweet atmosphere.

We started off the evening with ten cha gio and ten goi cuon. I love eating with boys with hearty appetites. The cha gio were the fattiest (you know, wide) ones yet and filled with a pork and crab mixture that rocked all of our taste buds. A little lettuce leaf wrapping and a dip of nuoc cham made the cha gio even better. These may rival Yen Do as my favorite cha gio in the city.

The goi cuon were awesome as well. They were larger than average and packed with the freshest shrimp, pork, herbs and vermicelli noodles around.

[Hmm… I’m sensing a trend here. I think 46A’s popularity with westerners has led them to super-size their portions.]

The house specialty banh xeo was stuffed with an abundance of pork belly slices, shrimp, bean sprouts and onions. The proper way of eating banh xeo is by wrapping up a piece of the crepe in greens and herbs and dipping it in nuoc cham. However, I still eat it the no fuss way my mom prepared it while growing up—small bowl + banh xeo + nuoc cham – greens and herbs.

The crepe was good, but a little soggy in some parts and in my opinion, not worthy of the hype machine.

The hype should instead focus on the cha gio, because they were so freakin’ delicious!

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9 thoughts on “Bánh Xèo 46A – Ho Chi Minh City

  1. Yeah…their banh xeo does look a little “thick” and burnt and not as flaky as the one I had at the food court in some mall around District 1. Their goi cuon looks fresh though. I love greens 🙂

    Btw, you spelled “nuoc” incorrectly again…when will you ever learn?! 🙂 j/k (you got it right the second time 😛

  2. Aw James, I’m so illiterate. If it weren’t for food, I wouldn’t be able to read anything 🙁

    Graham, I will definitely order some bi cuon on my next visit. I’ll skip the banh xeo and order all rolls 😉

  3. We ate at Banh Xeo 46A and across the street at 49A. The latter has several items not found at 46A, such as snail meat with ginger leaf, salted fried chicken, grill on the table beef or pork and clams…..all were EXCELLENT!!!

    For us, Banh Xeo 49A was the far superior choice.

    Note: if you’ve never been there before, even taxi drivers have a hard time finding it because it is down a small alley off the main road, but definitely worth the search!!

  4. I used to walk past that Banh xeo place every day on my way to school but never once thought about eating there. Now I am kicking myself every time I read about this place. But not to worry, I will make up for lost time and taste buds later this year.

  5. No this place is not the best place to eat banh xeo. There are lots of places sell banh xeo in Vietnam and it’s much better than this place. shrimps in banh xeo 46A are certainly bigger,fresher than other places but if you consider about the taste of the banh xeo then I recommend not to eat in 46A
    Also the price is about 5$ for each special banh xeo. It’s too expesive for a banhxeo (a banh xeo usually costs around 1$-2$)
    you can see lots of criticism in, a Vietnamese page for food lover

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