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Housed in a traditional Hoi An shop house, along the trendy restaurant and bar strip Nguyen Thai Hoc, Hai Cafe specialises in traditional Hoi An dishes, along with its popular nightly barbecue grill served in the cafe's spacious garden courtyard.
This is my second time to this restaurant as I wanted to bring the Family here to try the Cao Lau noodles and it did not disappoint. Food is amazing and I mean amazing. The service is so so so good as well. Will come...back again!!More
Not wanting to take up an entire day visiting the market, riding in bamboo boats on the river, etc., that most day classes offer in addition to cooking, I researched evening classes, and discovered this one. Though a little more on the demonstration side than...a complete hands-on class, we still had plenty of prepping and chopping to do, flavorings to pound, fish to dress and spring rolls to, well, roll. Fifteen of us sat around 2 communal tables and listened as our teacher, chef Chinh, a petite yet feisty woman, taught us the secrets to Vietnamese cuisine.
After preparing several dishes, the restaurant's chefs grilled beef and fried our spring rolls, and we all sat down again to a wonderful meal. We began with a bamboo basket filled with a spicy fresh salad, topped with grilled beef and served with shrimp chips. Afterwards, crispy spring rolls, stuffed with noodles, shrimp and wood-ear mushrooms. We sampled two Hoi An specialties (made by Hai Cafe): White rose, a soft, steamed rice paper dumpling, and fried wonton, topped with a tangy tomato-mango salsa. Finally, we enjoyed our sea bass, wrapped in lemongrass, chili and garlic, then banana leaves, and grilled to perfection, served with a side of sauteed morning glory leaves.Of course, with this much food, we were stuffed by the end of the class. And the meal was finished off with a wonderful platter of fresh fruit - something to refresh the palate.
Important points to remember:
This class is held every evening, and you can register directly at the restaurant while touring Hoi An Old Town. I registered the day before, and there was plenty of place.
Real chefs may find this class a bit of a let-down, but those looking for an introductory course, a quick version of a full day class, or a hands-on restaurant dinner, this course is for you.
Drinks, besides the initial welcome beverage, are not included in the price of the class.
The class takes place in a back dining room at the restaurant, with up to 20(?) people participating. I did not find this to be too many people, and the teacher had a good command over the class at all times. Chef Chinh, if you can get her, is endearing, intelligent and hilarious.
Keep in mind that you will not be hungry at the end of the class, so come with a good appetite!More
We were passing this restaurant at lunchtime during a visit to the Old Town and were attracted by the smells and smoke coming from the barbecue in the garden. A lovely courtyard setting with attentive and welcoming staff. Our food was quickly served and we...enjoyed the tasty bbq food at a very reasonable price. I was torn between choosing the duck or the brisket, the duck won on this occasion, however the food was so good we went back a couple of evenings later and I had the chance to have the brisket, both times an excellent choice.More
This is a must visit restarant for lovers of great BBQ food.It has a relaxed atmosphere, the staff are great and the food even better! We shared the Calamari dish to start followed by the mixed meat platter and king prawns for our mains- all...were super fresh and tasted great. We shared the banana wontons to finish - definitely worth a try. All in all a good dining experience.Thank you.More
So far I've been to this place twice for lunch and loved it. The staff are friendly, cheeky and up for banter. It has a large range of menu options. The food is delicious, including BBQ. The outdoor garden setting, set back from the street,...is very pleasant. I'd gladly return and I highly recommend it.More
Lovely dinner, plenty of choice, not expensive. Fresh rolls particularly delicious. Chocolate mousse an especial highlight. We shared, but maybe we could just have managed one each! Relaxed atmosphere, fantastic street lighting.