Fish tank of dreams in Tan Binh
By Derek Milroy in HCMC
We often travel past Hong Ha Street in Tan Binh District to go for some shopping or cinema at Parkson Center but noticed a slight change the other day a fantastic-looking seafood restaurant from the outside anyway.
|A young girl looks at the menu at Hai San Ganh Hao with the fi sh tank of live treat in the background - Photo: Derek Milroy|
So, we halted our day short and as we were peckish anyway headed into Hai San Ganh Hao to see if it lived up to our anticipation. We spoke to the manager Tai and he informed us that it only opened two months ago and that it was his first business venture, so we wished him all the luck in the world due to the downturn at the moment in Saigon.
Introductions over with and time to choose our food. We opted for the so mai nuong mo hanh (grilled scallops and fried onions), muc trung chien nuoc mam (fried squid with sweet eggs with fish sauce), so huyet Tu Xuyen (Sichuan oysters), oc huong (snail) and ngheu hap xa (steamed clams).
Honestly to god I’ve never seen seafood this size. The snails, clams and scallops were huge and the squid was so delicious, the nicest i’ve ever tasted.
But once arriving at Hai San Ganh Hao the thing that will hit you is the massive fish tank with all your favorite delights swimming away quite the thing not realizing their days are numbered and they are destined for Saigonese and tourists’ stomachs.
I know most westerners are taken aback when they first arrive and tourists especially older people are quite squeamish about these things but I think once you taste how good the Vietnamese seafood is and how fresh it is, you somehow overcome that initial alarm.
We arrived around 5ish but I think we were lucky as it wasn’t too busy. By the time we headed off it was packed with all the office workers heading out to celebrate the start of the weekend with the beers flowing and the noise levels increasing.
The price? So cheap for such wonderful food with our meal and a couple of drinks only costing us VND350,000. Considering the high quality fresh fare on offer you can’t argue with that.
Trying to find a top quality seafood eaterie is no easy task as sometimes you are disappointed. At Hai San Ganh Hao this was certainly not the case as the food was amazing. Needless to say this has already become our new favorite.
Hai San Ganh Hao is located at 31 Hong Ha, Ward 2, Tan Binh District.