The Taste Of Vietnam

From Pho to Bun Cha, the rise in popularity of Vietnamese cuisine in India reflects the growing appreciation for its diverse culinary traditions
The Taste Of Vietnam
The Taste Of Vietnam

Vietnamese cuisine is a melting pot (sometimes, literally) of flavours across the Asian continent and even Europe. With such a democracy of flavours, even the Indian palette is no challenge for this cuisine. Like a language, cuisines adapt to local preferences and take a new form.

&ldquoInstead of a blunt sweetness, which is traditional for Vietnamese, we serve relatively balanced flavours for our Indian customers,&rdquo the restaurant manager informed me as I took a bite of Vietnamese Lotus Stem.

In the background, a soft pop playlist welcomed the incoming crowd. Even though VietNom was only launched a month ago in Gurgaon&rsquos Worldmark, as the clock struck dining hours, several groups&mdashmostly family and friends&mdashfilled up the restaurant&rsquos wheelchair-friendly premises.

In the middle, a lively bar with Vietnamese-styled fans served as the centrepiece and kept the cocktail supply running throughout the restaurant.

On The Menu

VietNom can undoubtedly have you spoilt for choice, especially if you find the Asian food experience incomplete without dumplings. Here, you&rsquoll find Tapioca dumplings, also known as Banh Bot Loc in Vietnamese. Traditionally,&nbspBanh Bot Loc contains a filling of pork belly, shrimp and sometimes mushroom. However, the restaurant also serves a delicious vegetarian option called White Rose (soft steamed Tapioca flour dumplings with ground mung beans).

For the main course, try the Vietnamese broth noodle dish, Pho. Contrary to some popular beliefs, this dish comes from French colonial influences. In fact, in Vietnam, many mothers-in-law judge a potential suitor for their sons according to the quality of broth they can prepare. It is said that the aroma of the broth is sufficient to evaluate its quality. At VietNom, the Pho is served with bird&rsquos eye chillis (native to Mexico), one of the spiciest chillies in the world.

If you&rsquore craving something closer to home, try the Blue Pea Jasmine rice with Vegetable Mango Curry&mdashone of the most popular dishes at VietNom. With Thai influences, the traditional Vietnamese mango curry is often served with prawns, lemongrass and coconut.

Persistence Of Memory

Towards left, several honours decorate the wall, many of which commend the cocktails.

One of the most star-studded (or starry night-studded) cocktails is called &lsquoThe Van Gogh Effect&rsquo, a gin-based drink with Aperol, Grapefruit, Cinnamon Honey, Mint and Egg White. This delicious concoction comes with a rice-paper miniature painting of the Dutch painter&rsquos Starry Night.

While the impressionist godfather might be doing many rounds in the famous art scene across the world (culinary and otherwise), my favourite cocktail was dedicated to Salvador Dali&rsquos Persistence of Memory. Topped with a surrealist&rsquos favourite metaphor (an egg&mdasha white egg foam, to be specific), this tequila-based drink is served with Earl Grey Campari Sweet Vermouth.

Address Ground Floor, GR- 05, Worldmark, Maidawas Rd, Sector 65, Gurugram, Haryana 122001

Cover photo credit VietNom

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