June 07, 2023 | 09:15 GMT+7

First four Vietnamese restaurants awarded Michelin Star

Ngoc Lan -

One restaurant in HCMC and three in Hanoi receive a Michelin Star at special ceremony.

Photo: Michelin Guide
Photo: Michelin Guide

The first four Vietnamese restaurants were awarded a Michelin Star at the Michelin Guide Ceremony on June 6 in Hanoi.

The list includes Anăn Saigon in Ho Chi Minh City and Gia, Hibana by Koki, and Tam Vi in Hanoi.

In addition to the four, 103 restaurants and eateries in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City were honored at the Michelin Guide Ceremony in three categories, including Michelin Selected (Michelin recommended); Michelin Guide Special Awards (special awards); and Bib Gourmand (offering good food at moderate prices).

The Michelin Selected category includes 70 restaurants, with 32 in Hanoi and 38 in Ho Chi Minh City. Up to 15 serve “pho”, such as Pho 10 Ly Quoc Su, Pho Tien, and Pho Chao. Longstanding famous restaurants such as Bun Cha Obama (Bun Cha Huong Lien), Cha Ca Anh Vu, Oc Dao, and Oc Vi are also on the list, while luxury restaurants such as T.U.N.G dining, Lua, and Gia were also named.

The Bib Gourmand list includes 29 restaurants, with 13 in Hanoi and 16 in Ho Chi Minh City, such as 1946 Cua Bac, Bun Cha Ta, and Cha Ca Thang Long. More than half serve Vietnamese cuisine or street food, strongly reflecting the popularity of street food rooted in local culture.

In the Michelin Guide Special Awards, a Somelier Award (Award for bartenders) went to Mr. Yu Yamamoto; a Service Award (Award for service quality) to Chef Nguyen Thi Nu at Vietnam House Restaurant; and a Young Chef Award (Talented Young Chef Award) to Chef Sam Tran at Gia Restaurant.

“We are very proud to finally present the first restaurant selection in Vietnam, with a total of 103 restaurants in the Guide, highlighting four restaurants awarded one Michelin Star,” said Mr. Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the Michelin Guide.

He said the first selection in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City highlights the differences and variety in what the two cities have to offer. The capital Hanoi offers a very laid back and relaxed vibe with small shops and restaurants found mostly in the Old Quarter. “Traditional Vietnamese cuisine with northern flavors is prevalent in the city, with a clear presentation of natural flavors, enhanced with different types of spices and herbs for complexity,” he added. “Ho Chi Minh City, on the other hand, is a bustling and rapidly-growing city that offers a unique energy to all travelers and has a diverse variety of cuisine. Both modern and traditional cooking techniques are seen, and there is also a great mix of talent and young local chefs eager to present their ideas and creations on the plate. This is just the beginning of the Michelin Guide’s journey in Vietnam, and our inspectors have been more than pleased to have discovered many gastronomic spots in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City and, I am sure, many more in the coming years.”

The Michelin Guide’s debut in Vietnam is supported by the Sun Group, a conglomerate with a mission of promoting and preserving the country’s unique beauty and culture since its establishment in 2007.

Mr. Dang Minh Truong, Chairman of the Sun Group, said the inaugural edition of the Michelin Guide Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City marks a significant milestone for Vietnam’s culinary scene. “Through this opportunity, we hope to recognize the dedication and hard work of the destination’s top chefs and restaurants and to celebrate the diversity and complexity of Vietnamese cuisine,” he added. “We believe that the Michelin Guide will inspire and drive innovation and excellence in the industry, and I am excited to see how it will shape the culinary landscape in Vietnam in the years to come. With the first edition of the Michelin Guide in Vietnam, we hope that this will promote international tourism, and spread a love for the delicious local cuisine that both Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City have to offer.”

The Michelin Guide conveys its restaurant reviews through an extensive system of distinctions, the most famous of which are its globally renowned Michelin Stars, awarded to the best culinary experiences within the Guide’s restaurant selection.

Alongside the coveted Star ratings, the selection also includes the popular Bib Gourmand category, a distinction awarded to restaurants that provide the best value-for-money meals.

All establishments are chosen by anonymous inspectors with the Michelin Guide following multiple tests and according to the same five criteria used around the world: quality of ingredients; mastery of cooking techniques; harmony of flavors; expression of the chef’s personality in the cuisine; and consistency, both over time and across the entire menu. Location, décor, service, and available facilities are not part of the selection criteria, even if they may be highlighted if of particular interest. The full selection will be available exclusively in a digital format on all the Michelin Guide’s official platforms: website, mobile application, and social networks.

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