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“The fastest food..” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Cha Ca La Vong

Cha Ca La Vong
14 Pho Cha Ca, Hanoi, Vietnam
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Ranked #344 of 931 Restaurants in Hanoi
Price range: $5 - $10
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Late Night
Description: Visit this street after a long day of sight-seeing for a traditional dish of fish fried tableside with herbs, spices, onions, peanuts, and rice noodles.
Copenhagen, Denmark
Top Contributor
95 reviews 95 reviews
33 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 40 cities Reviews in 40 cities
65 helpful votes 65 helpful votes
“The fastest food..”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 13, 2013

Cha Ca La Vong is a deservedly famous institution in Hanoi. The dish, grilled fish served with rice noodles, served at the table with a combination of dill, asian vegetables is seasoned with fish sauce and garnished with coriander and peanuts. It's an excellent dish and anyone who likes Pho, will inevitable like Cha Ca La Vong. So long as your a fish eater then this is a must try experience. The staff are suitably arrogant in a kind of funny French way. They know they have a winner and they know the people will come. It's USD$11 for the dish and a beer so talk that its expensive is just plain bunkum.

  • Visited February 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 4 of 5 stars Food
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507 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Indonesian first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
penang
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
10 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
“Not worth dining”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 8, 2013

We heard about this famous restaurant and thought of giving it a try. We were quite early for our dinner which was about 6 pm. So, getting a table was not a problem.

I think they only served one type of food in this restaurant. As the staff could not speak English except only able to tell the price of the food there, we did not get to ask much about their menu. So, once you are there, they will just show you the price of the cha ca set and ask you to walk upstairs. They will know what to serve you without you ordering.

It was 17 USD for two sets which was quite expensive for what we got. The amount of turmeric fish pieces were quite little and the pieces of fish were small too. The set also came with two plates of green vege and two plates of cold rice vermicelli. However, it did not come with any drink and I think they only serve beer because when I asked them about drink, they only said beer. The taste of the fish was just okay. I did not like the cold rice vermicelli.

  • Visited January 2013
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hanoi, Vietnam
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Great dish, but not everyone's cup of tea”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

This dish is really really, really popular with all the locals here. But there's only one thing that can put off foreigners: the shrimp paste! It's got a really strong smell, as well as taste, and even some of us Vietnamese cannot get over it. However I'm seriously addicted to the sauce, and it perfectly complement the grilled fish! The experience is fun as well, as you can prepare the whole dish by yourself. All in all, you'd either love it or really hate it, as I could see some foreigners sat there struggling to get over the sauce, and there's no alternative available..

Correction for some of the reviews: the fish are grilled on charcoal, THEN deep fried.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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Singapore, Singapore
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Go for the experience”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013 via mobile

Is it worth it? Well two people with a beer about 18 usd. That's value you would think but then it's a dingy rickety old place with only fried fish and drinks on the menu. Very very oily fish frying in loads of oil and boul full of fresh herbs. I would howeve still recommend it bcos its really unique and perhaps not found anywhere else on the world. I always knew dill goes great with fried fish but I did not know the origin of this dance of flavor originated 100 years ago supposedly in this restaurant. Now idea how the Vietnamese and this place in particular got to know of dill. Am told this is an original 100 year old recipe.

    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sun City, Arizona
Top Contributor
66 reviews 66 reviews
24 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 34 cities Reviews in 34 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
“Be careful of imitators”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

There are other restaurants on the same street with the same or similar name. Be sure to find the right joint and go upstairs for a unique experience. Not the grand time you would expect from watching Andrew Zimern ooh and aah on his TV food show, but still a "classic" experience. Yes, there are better places and cheaper ones in Hanoi, but check out this place, anyway, as you probably will only visit Hanoi once, and where else can you eat snake head fish?

  • Visited January 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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