5 Tips For Eating Vietnamese Street Food
Foreign foods can be a new and intimidating experience, especially in Southeast Asia, so here are five tips for eating Vietnamese street food. Some people are unsure of street food vendors because of the outdoor cooking and cleanliness issues, but if you are observant, you can find different types of cuisine and interesting flavors to try. Vietnamese street food vendors are popular in many countries, so they are not hard to find. They typically specialize in a few entrees and there is a certain amount of skill and technique that goes into this type of cooking.
- Look for street food vendors where crowds gather. This is a very good sign that the food is outstanding. Look at what other patrons are ordering and if you are not sure what something is, just ask. Most vendors are very friendly and they like to talk about their food and share their experience.
- Communicate with vendors any way possible. This may mean hand gestures or pointing at your neighbor’s plate. If you can’t seem to communicate at all, look to someone near you who may be able to translate. It’s always a more pleasurable experience if you can converse with the vendor and know exactly what you’re ordering.
- Check the Vietnamese street vendor for cleanliness. Look closely to be sure that it has a clean counter, work area and that all food is covered when not in use. No one wants to get sick on his or her vacation, but practicing a little vigilance will go a long way to a healthy vacation.
- Enjoy the locals and their knowledge. Interact with the locals and talk with people you normally wouldn’t. This is part of the whole experience of enjoying Vietnamese street food. The locals are very knowledgeable and are usually more than willing to point you in the right direction when it comes to street food vendors.
- Always tip your street vendor, but don’t do it out of charity. Vietnamese people are very proud and you wouldn’t want to insult them. Only tip if a tip is warranted. You don’t want to come across as condescending to a street vendor. Remember, they are cooking your food.
Vietnamese street food vendors are popular in many countries. They offer some of the most authentic Vietnamese food and most are extremely anxious to talk about their food and increase their business. Part of the experience is getting to talk with the locals and find out what their favorite dishes are and where they get them. Try to avoid Vietnamese street food vendors that are near hotel and tourist spots because they are typically higher in price and offer more traditional American fare food.