|Ben Thanh Street Food Market
Considering my last blog did not present Vietnamese food in the best light, I thought my second one should be of a more positive experience with Ho Chi Minh's cuisine. There is a lot of amazing food in Vietnam, but with a large group of people it is difficult to find a restaurant in Ho Chi Minh that everyone will enjoy, as they generally specialise in one particular type of food. Luckily, the Benthanh Street Food Market has an option for everyone, even those who come to Vietnam and insist on eating western food the whole time.
|Inside the Market
Benthanh Street Food Market is easily recognisable from its bright lights and chilled music in contrast to the Vietnamese road it is located on. There is plenty of seating downstairs at the front and back of the restaurant where you are surrounded with energy, excitement and an aroma of amazing foods. However, if you prefer a slightly calmer surrounding there is seating upstairs where you can watch over the craziness of the Market from a distance. But please do not come to Benthanh Street Food Market expecting a fine dining experience . The food is really good value for money, but it is a Vietnamese dining experience at heart. You share tables with strangers unless you are in a big enough group to take up a one and there is still no concept of personal space. Ironically, this is what actually makes Benthanh so much fun. It is lively and different from any eating experience I have ever encountered. The long park benches create a sociable atmosphere for eating or drinking. There is a huge variety of food stalls, so there are very few queues. The staff bring your food to the table when it is ready and its normally pretty fast. This is probably a less hazardous option then lots of hungry customers trying to balance their food through the mass of tables and stops the market getting to busy with people wondering around.
|Food getting prepared
Amazing food is not all that is to be found at the market, the drinks are really good as well. There are a variety of cocktail offers for those who are willing to spend a little bit more money, which I would highly recommend doing as there are some absolute gems. Standard priced beers and soft drinks are also available for those wanting to maintain a budget or if that just what you prefer. Benthanh Street Food Market is somewhere that is popular amongst a mixture of younger and older people, locals and tourist, which speaks for itself better than I could ever put into words.