Ba Noi's: The Fresh Flavors of Vietnam

at the Ben Thanh Market roundabout

Apart from Singapore, Vietnam's another Asian country that swept me off my feet. In a nutshell, I would say that if you've got a knack for backpacking, war memorabilia, and lots of spring rolls, coffee and pho (pronounced as the F word without the K), consider going the Vietnam this quarter (while the weather is cool).

fruit peddler at the Pham Ngu Lao Street

hamming around at the War Remnants Museum

Fanny's fancy ice cream & lemon sherbet

Pho 2000 beef pho: Bill Clinton loves this!

*le sigh* Vietnam! What I would give to be with you in a heartbeat! While there are plenty of (mainstream) Vietnamese restaurants here in Manila, in all honesty, nothing comes close. There's one that's reminiscent and until recently, is one of Makati's best kept secrets.

Ba Noi's is quietly tucked in Perea Street, a stone throw away from the bright lights of Greenbelt. I grew up in Paseo De Roxas and finding myself in Perea's just pretty neat. Lots of deja vu moments. :)

complimentary lobster crackers aka. kropek

For starters, I ordered a glass of iced coffee (Cambodian coffee's still better IMO) and it was served with the crackers above. I was more than thankful because I arrived at the restaurant very famished!

Goi Cuon (Fresh Spring Rolls)

Pork, shrimp, vermicelli, rice paper and peanut sauce. I think I just died an went to heaven! I loved this more than the fried spring rolls (below).

Cha Gio (Fried Spring Rolls)

I haven't really had any cha gio of any kind that blew my mind. Ba Noi's cha gio is "a mixture of ground pork, shrimp, taro, and black fungus wrapped and deep fried and served with fresh greens and traditional nuoc mam dipping sauce". To me -- no more, no less. A siding of mint jelly though unexpected, would be fantastic.

Ca Kho To (Catfish in Caramel Sauce)

I would like to call this dish the "redeemer" (from so-so spring rolls). Deep fried catfish bathing in rich caramel sauce, spring onions and chilies. Mmmmm. Bring the white rice in!

Dau Hu Sot Xi Muoi (Tofu with Ground Pork)

This is a dish I didn't expect to like. It's a ground pork mix enveloped in tofu then topped with a sweet and sour plum chili sauce. It' s very high protein and has just enough sugar and carbs to keep someone on a diet going the entire day.

Banh Dan Long (Pandan Cake with Mung Bean)

If you're on a diet, skip this fantastic kutchinta-like mung bean filled cake. Its coconut cream and toasted sesame seed topping made the dessert so well orchestrated I managed to nosh everything down in a few minutes. *oops*

4 dishes, 1 dessert, 1 drink and a cup of rice (save for the drink were all shared by 2) amounted to Php 1300+.  I'd probably go back and spend the same amount in Ba Noi's but I'll skip the fried spring rolls and get a pho on my next visit.

1 comment on "Ba Noi's: The Fresh Flavors of Vietnam"
  1. Ba Noi's was my super favorite after-yoga treat. I loved it so much I always crave for it even if I didn't go to yoga at Perea :) Miss you, P!