Have you ever noticed those middle-aged ladies crouching next to the small coal stoves and stacks of rice paper? The sight usually seen in busy parks or touristy streets of Vietnam means you are only one step away from experiencing what is called “Vietnamese pizza”, a popular street food of young Vietnamese living in big cities of Vietnam.
Where does the Vietnamese pizza come from?
The best place to experience this delicious snack of Vietnamese youngsters is Da Lat, a small city in highlands from where the pizza comes from. This lovely little city boasts an average temperature of around 180C and nicely cool climate, which makes strolling around the local night markets beautiful breezy experience. One can watch teenagers (often dressed in jackets), sitting around the coal stoves and enjoying this Vietnamese snack while sipping on a hot soy bean drink, another famous treat of highlanders.
These days Vietnamese pizza can be seen in every big city of Vietnam and it is considered one of the best street food snacks by many Vietnamese. We will let you judge on your own whether it deserves its reputation, go out and try it yourselves, next time when you see it around.
Phan Thiet Style
Another variation on Vietnamese pizza is Phan Thiet style, that comes with a shrimp paste spread over the pancake giving the snack a rather unpleasant seafood smell. However Vietnamese love it I found it equally tasty and even more special than its original counterpart.
Where to buy?
Vietnamese pizza can be bought in some parks and from street sellers across many touristy places in all major cities in Vietnam, mostly from later afternoon throughout evening until late night.
- Turtle lake – a famous roundabout in D1 is heaven for street food lovers. Many famous snacks can be found here: peach tea, mangos, grilled egg, rice paper salad, fish balls and of course aforementioned Vietnamese pizza. One can find on average around 10 pizza stalls spread evenly around the lake.
- The Notre Dame Cathedral – some Vietnamese pizza stalls can be found around this famous Saigon landmark too. Sunday morning are also a good time to come over and grab the snack.
- Nguyễn Huệ walking street – look for the sidewalk
- 53-57 Cao Thang, District 3 – Great place to experience many different variations of traditional Vietnamese pizza including Phan Thiet style.
- Dalat corner at 386/43B Le Van Sy, 14 Ward, District 3 – Here, inside a peaceful and quiet alley you can taste the goodness from Da Lat.
Please note than in the city center of Saigon, street food sellers are not allowed to sell the food on sidewalks, therefore sometimes you will see them running away from police patrol. Just wait few minutes until polices disappears and the sellers usually come back. One must wonder what is all this fuzz good for?