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04 February 2020

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Best Restaurants in Phong Nha

Vietnamese food is known and loved by most around the world, let alone in Phong Nha. You probably won’t find any major city globally where you can’t find some form of Vietnamese cuisine available. So what about Phong Nha? It’s working for its own place as a top destination in Vietnam and for food lovers of all sorts to mark it as not only a cave destination…but for food experiences as well!

What started with no restaurants a mere 10 years ago in this majestic Northern Central Vietnamese gem of a town, is starting to come to life these past few years!

Whether you’re after a glass of good imported red wine and a fresh brick-oven pizza, fish or vegan cuisine. The best restaurants in Phong Nha cater to your needs and continue to push the boundaries of what’s available in this region.

Food in Phong Nha

Unlike eating in Hanoi, eating in Phong Nha will let you try the dishes you’ve never had anywhere else before.  It’s not always what it is you’re necessarily eating. It’s who you are eating with, where you’re eating at, and the atmosphere you’ve engulfed yourself in. Whether it’s the lighting, music, temperature, sitting next to the river, or on the top of the mountain, just the slightest adjustment can 100% affect the experience of everything you’re eating.

 

This is what makes Phong Nha such a unique place for food lovers. This town delivers something for everyone!  You won’t find such a peaceful destination in Southeast Asia with such good food quite like this one.

Finding The Best Restaurants In Phong Nha

Traveling for many people is the main reason they go to places and sightseeing is the thing you do in between meals! Therefore guaranteeing we make the right recommendations is crucial to us as we want you to leave with the best possible vision Phong Nha can give you. That’s why we’ve gone through and tried all the restaurants here in town to compile this list of the best of them in Phong Nha.

Fine Dining

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
The Villas Restaurant night time

Best Fine Dining Restaurant in Phong Nha:

 

The Villas Restaurant

 

Located on the main street of the town, yet in its quieter part on the water, the Villas Restaurant offers the best Western cuisine in town. The restaurant has Western standards of service: French manager, welcoming and professional staff and skilled chefs that clearly know what they’re doing.

Besides the food, the Villas Restaurant has the best ambience – imagine relaxing in exclusive setting along the Son River, surrounded by karst mountains.

The Food at The Villas Restaurant

 

The Villas Restaurant offers a small Western menu with a choice of international dishes influenced by Vietnamese fusion. The food is just extraordinary with a very high standard and great value. It’s like eating in a top restaurant in Madrid for a fraction of the price!

How amazing does confit duck leg, beef tenderloin or salmon sound for a main dish? For starters, they have a variety of prawn, squid and fish dishes along with smoked duck salad and spring rolls. Of course, they offer vegetarian options, our favorite being vegetarian pizza!

If you are down for a coffee and cake, the Villas has some of the best deserts in town such as a classic chocolate cake, real ice-cream and a more unusual recipe – Kahlua pannacotta.

Must-try: Eggs Benedict with salmon or special Victory Roads breakfast!

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
The Victory Burger

Modern Vietnamese Food

Some of the Phong Nha’s best food is, of course, Vietnamese. With recipes passed down through generations and dishes being tweaked over the years.

**Classic Vietnamese dishes such as Pho (the famed noodle soup), Bun Cha (grilled pork with noodles, fresh vegetables and noodles) and Banh Xeo (savoury crispy rice pancakes) are all must-tries. However, more contemporary Vietnamese food has never been better. Modern Vietnamese food is pushing the boundaries of the cuisine, creating exciting new dishes.**

Phong Nha is a perfect example! Here, both traditional and contemporary Vietnamese foods maintain a stellar reputation. And it’s only growing.

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Chao Vietnam Restaurant, Phong Nha

Best Modern Vietnamese Food In Phong Nha:

 

Chao Vietnam

 

Chao is one such restaurant challenging the standard and traditional Vietnamese dishes with its creative kitchen methods. Located on the main road in the center of Phong Nha, this often full restaurant cooks top-notch meals.

 

Being situated in the middle of it all, Chao brings a fun and modern atmosphere to an area known for its traditional ways. The food that’s prepared here, however, brings a much needed and necessary spark to the downtown area. Simple yet fresh, the decor inside brings us a comfortable space to dine in while taking nothing away from the food. Outside you can enjoy a view of the by-passers walking the streets and searching the area for bars, accommodation, or more restaurants.

 

Suggested Dishes: Fried Squid, Pork Belly, Local Fish w/ Steamed Rice

Specialty Food in Phong Nha

Vietnam, for the most part, is praised for its food amongst other things. Like many places in Southeast Asia, you’ll find certain villages and towns where it may be the only place in the world you can try that dish. Phong Nha is no different than the rest!

Best Authentic Restaurant in Phong Nha: Moi Moi

 

Address: Hung Trach, Bo Trach, Quang Binh

Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

 

Located just a 15-20 minute motorbike ride away from the center of Phong Nha, situated in the middle of the farming area by the Bung River. This signature restaurant offers an authentic 1 of a kind experience, and also a lake close by if you so choose to go for a swim. At the restaurant, they do not speak English, but the menu has been easily translated for you as it’s only several items long.

Like they say they’ve got two houses on the land here. They’re related. Moi Moi means Termites and they have plenty of them. They refer to them as the “Communist Carpenters”!

The Food at Moi Moi

 

Unlike any other place you’ll try in all of Phong Nha, Moi Moi delivers an irreplicable “bamboo pork” slow-cooked for 30 minutes! If going here, you must try this dish as the savoury taste it packs with the carrots and onions is out of this world! If chicken is your thing, you can watch the young kids catch it, dad prepare it, and mom go through the garden to gather the veggies to accompany the meal with freshly steamed rice.

If you’re looking for the most down to earth family to serve you the “true farm to table” this is for you!
They also have vegetarian options such as friend spring rolls and amazing peanut dumplings.

Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Bamboo pork at Moi Moi Restaurant

Vegetarian Food

While it’s not necessarily a hard task of finding vegetarian food in Vietnam, it can be very difficult at times knowing how to ask. In Phong Nha luckily for all the visitors mostly every place you visit will have a vegetarian or even a vegan option!
We found that the Veggie Box on the main road to be one that’ll satisfy just about any taste buds.

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Phong Nha Veggie Box Restaurant

Best Vegetarian Restaurant in Phong Nha:

 

The Veggie Box

 

Hours: Mon – Sun 7:00am – 10:00pm.

 

This vegan restaurant offers a big variety of dishes. Their large vegetarian and vegan menu includes seaweed salad, hotpot, skewers, tofu dishes, tropical fruit, and a large assortment of vegetables.

They also prepare fresh daily: Juices, Smoothie Bowls, and desserts.

Seafood

While they may not necessarily be close to the ocean, the fresh fish and prawns that are brought in are absolutely remarkable.

Best Seafood in Phong Nha:

 

Phong Nha Farmstay

 

They offer grilled fish cooked in a way that dates back to the early 1900’s style from the Doan family in Hanoi. The dish at the farmstay is named after the statue at the gate of the house “La Vong- Khuon Tu Nha”, a Chinese poet and revolutionist.  This now-famous dish was so popular that the street was named “Cha Ca” in Hanoi. The dish in question features: Grilled fish, dill leaves and spring onion in a hot pan, served with fresh rice vermicelli, lettuce, local herbs, which you then wrap in rice paper and eat with a traditional Vietnamese dipping sauce. Amazing dish with a great story!

 

Also Try: Green Mango Salad w/ salad or Fresh Spring Rolls w/ Shrimp

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Phong Nha Farmstay Restaurant

Pizza

Merely a few years ago you could only find one place in town that had pizza at all, now you’ve got 5 places that serve pizza and 3 of them serving pizza from Capture Cafe. Paradise Pizza which is your basic pizza parlour with just a few chairs and minimal menu, and Lake House Pizza which boasts the best crust in Phong Nha.

Overall though, we’d have to say Capture’s Pizza is incredible in all aspects.

Best Pizza Place in Phong Nha: Capture Cafe

 

They are a small cafe offering many options for food and products. They have a daily breakfast and lunch, and early dinner. The menu consists of Pizza, Pasta, Enchiladas, Burgers and Salads, sounds amazing, right?!
As they are situated in a small area with tourists but not too much infrastructure, they offer many store products as well. They offer toiletries that are hard to find (tampons, condoms, conditioner), postcards, books, bakery items, snacks, and much more!

The Menu at Capture Cafe

 

One simply cannot go to Capture without ordering one of the best pizzas in Vietnam! They offered a variety of pizzas ranging from Margherita to Hawaiian to veggie and even a Vegan pizza! The one that you must try while here is the “One Upper” complete with: bacon, caramelized onions, spinach, and feta cheese!

Vegan Option: Pizza with mushroom, tofu, and ratatouille sauce (onion, garlic, tomato, zucchini, eggplant, thyme, and bell pepper in a tomato sauce.

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Pizza at Capture Cafe, Phong Nha

International Cuisine

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Omars Namaste Restaurant

Best International Cuisine in Phong Nha:

 

Omars Namaste

 

The only Indian food you’ll find within an hour away definitely does not disappoint whatsoever! While this may be one of the 6 locations in Vietnam they truly do keep the menu as close to Grandmother’s recipe as possible!

Must-Try: Prawn Vindaloo, and Fish Pakodas

Cafes in Phong Nha

While it was very difficult to find any coffee a few years ago, it is now a new question at hand…where to find “the best” coffee. You can get a nice western style coffee at Capture Cafe, good Vietnamese iced coffee at Easthill Coffee, peanut butter coffee at Phong Nha Underground, but for an all-around coffee destination, you won’t find any others quite like The Coffee Station.

Best Cafe in Phong Nha:

 

The Coffee Station

 

The only place in town where you’ll get fresh coffee beans from Dalat prepared in such different ways. They offer a variety of brewing methods available such as a pour-over, aero press, syphon, and also make a fantastic coconut egg coffee. If that wasn’t enough for you, they make a cold brew unlike any other we’ve had in Vietnam thus far and also have one interesting cold brew with lime and simple syrup if you’re feeling adventurous!

Must-Try: Phin Demonstration

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
The Coffee Station Phong Nha

Uncategorized Mentions

Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Pub with Cold Beer

Pub with Cold Beer

 

Starting out as a poor farmer’s house that supplied workers with cold beverages on their way home, the Pub With Cold Beer has grown substantially since tourism has been increasing rapidly in town.   Visitors are now seeking this restaurant every day while en route to duck stop and Bong Lai Nature Farm’s giant swing, usually just after a visit to one of the many caves in Phong Nha.

 

The Pub With Cold Beer is famous amongst the tourists for its farm-to-table methods. Everything on the menu is grown on their property or raised on-site!  The draw, it’s a place whereas an option you can choose to kill your own chicken or allow the family to do it for you!

East Hill Coffee

 

On the outskirts of town, you’ll find this lovely coffee shop and eatery perched up overlooking the surrounding rice fields and karst mountains in the distance. If you’re feeling a bit hungry they offer a delicious grilled whole chicken to die for.

Must-Try: Hot ginger tea and grilled whole chicken

Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
East Hill Coffee
Best Restaurants in Phong Nha, Food in Phong Nha, Phong Nha Farmstay
Phong Nha Underground

Phong Nha Underground

 

The menu is a fusion of Italian and Vietnamese cuisine but also features burgers, chicken, smoked pork, and shrimp scampi. If you’re in a rush, grab a coffee for takeaway or one of the delicious desserts they offer.

Must-Try: Peanut Butter Coffee

While you’re traveling through Phong Nha and Vietnam, you really should try to eat as much Vietnamese food as possible. Whether it’s the Banh Mi cart in Halong Bay, fine Dining in Hanoi or just a grungy little noodle stand on the side of the highway. Take advantage of the fact that you’re in one of the most unique places in the world for food – with its depth of flavor, texture, and taste you’ll find something that works for you in Vietnamese cuisine.

Jim & Inna
Jim & Inna

Written by Jim and Inna from the Executive Thrillseekers who spent 1 month in Phong Nha! They run a travel blog and have been on the road for 3 years so far. These guys provide great tips for many destinations including Vietnam since it is the country they first met in!

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