Cuc Gach Quan: a Saigon restaurant you’ll fall in love with!

OK, sometimes when you’re in a dynamic metropolis like Saigon, you need a little bit of help in working out where to eat.

There is, of course, a plethora of decent eateries in Saigon, but when my Vietnamese friends told me they wanted to show me Cuc Gach Quan, a famous restaurant in District 1 (see the map below for its precise location) that serves up some excellent Vietnamese dishes, I was completely in their hands…and wow, I fell in love with this place!

Cuc Gach Quan is a laid-back place, located in District 1, but far from the touristy crowds. It’s decorated in an old-school vibe, and seems popular with locals, expats and especially tourists “in the know”. Nothing fancy or pretentious, which I really liked.


The food is extremely tasty, but I was completely bowled over by the Thit Kho Trung, the traditional braised pork and boiled egg dish served up at Tet (the Lunar New Year holiday). Wow. Deliciously tender and flavored superbly in coconut juices…one to truly savor!

The menu is rather extensive, so it’s great to have a local with you: other dishes to watch out for include the soft shell crab, the spring rolls, the fried tofu with lemongrass, and even the shrimp salads…crap, now I’m getting hungry!

Not a cheap restaurant – and yes, Cuc Gach Quan was visited by Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, something that should set your bank manager’s inner alarm bells a-ringing – so expect to pay more than you would in a regular Saigon restaurant. It still works out very affordable (compared to the prices we’d pay back in the west) but you might want to save this place for a special night…

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