A gastronomic walk down memory lane@Old Quarters, Hanoi

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viagra australia Here comes the 8-day business trip to Hanoi. Although I have yet to recover from my previous work mental exhaustion, I am about to embark on another 8 day of brain frying. Thank goodness I was travelling with a friend today.

follow A lousy brunch on the plane. Officially lousiest nasi lemak I had ever eaten.

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When I arrived at the airport, memories of my trip here in 2012 slowly creeped back in. I came here for a holiday 2 years ago. The only difference was that it was actually quite cold in Hanoi now. With an average of 18C below, I underestimated the cold and did not bring any thick clothings. Was shivering a little.

The next 8 days, we will be camping at JW Marriott. I was surprised that the hotel is actually quite far away from town or the financial districts, with almost nothing to view or see outside this place. Nonetheless, the hotel was designed with finesse and class, really quite a posh place I gotta say. The best part of all…gym is 24 hours!

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When we arrived at the hotel, it was nearly 3 pm already and we were getting restless and fidgety from the hypoglycemia. As there was not much to eat outside, we hitched a cab to the Old Quarters for a meal and check out the Hanoi scene.

Our first pitstop, was to Ly Quoc Su, a road where the famous Pho 10, is supposedly located. Unfortunately, when we arrived, the shop was already closed and we settled for the shop next door instead. Pho 12. Lol. Spill over effect, the F&B people refers it.

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Cold and hungry, this freshly cooked bowl of Pho does wonders! Steamy hot, smooth rice noodles with tons of spring onions, was perfect. A bowl of Pho with beef slices, 40,000 V, approximately RM7+.

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In fact, it was just nearby the iconic cathedral, where I had coffee nearby 2 years ago.

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Every street in every corner of Hanoi looked and feel the same. I was prepared to walk blindly and get lost in the old quarters. After randomly walking along the inner roads and lanes, I stumbled upon this coffee shop, Cafe Hue and was attracted by the pungent aroma of coffee.

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The shop had several visitors already and was surrounded by gigantic tongs of coffee beans of all kinds of variety. I did not want to support kopin like luwak to take a part in reducing any possibility of greedy coffee harvesters torturing the civet cats.

After smelling the aroma of Arabica, and found it fairly acceptable (plus the beans were more affordable than many others), I decided to buy a pack to try. 1kg cost 500,000 V, and I took 100g, which cost about RM9.

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For those who want them to freshly grind for you, the machine here would do the job for you.

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I will only be able to comment on the taste once I get home next week. For those who wants more details, Cafe Hue has printed it all on the packaging.

After that, we spent a couple of hours wandering around the roads, did a little bit of shopping but half the time spent on the road was us trying to figure out our way back to the cathedral area. It really frustrated us the few times we turned the wrong way due to wrong road guidance, which ended up going further away from our destination.

And what was worse, with the ample motorists swirving dangerously all over, 2 guys on the bike came from behind me and did the undespicable…hit and grabbed my butt which left me stunned. They even had the nerves of stopping the bike, turned back and shouted out some viet crap. All I could respond in return, was shout out to them asses.

For ladies out there who plan to shop here or visit around, please be really careful since there are asses like this out there targeting unsuspecting females! GRRRR…

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Hungry,  cold, frustrated and tired, we were so glad to finally made our way back to the cathedral. We headed to the cafe next to the cathedral, La Place for dinner. I came here 2 years ago, for coffee. It is located at AuTrieu road.

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Nothing much had changed since I came here 2 years ago. The decor was pretty much the same as it was then, good thing they did keep this place clean.

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The long black was from italian beans and it was not bad. Downside was, the weather was cold and my coffee turned cold fast. Brrrrr….so cold!

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First viet spring rolls for this trip! Porky, savoury, yummy, and boy…the skin was so thin and flaky. Perfect when dipped in the light spicy fish sauce.

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The next viet dish….Bun Cha! Pork minced meat balls in light broth, with rice noodles on the plate, to be soaked and dipped upon each chopstickfulls!

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La Place’s waitress said that it is known for its crepes, so we ordered one to try. The crepes were pretty alright. Not too sweet, a little fluffy, and the sweetness fully came only from the ice cream and nutella.

Total damage for the La Place dinner meal was 277,000 V, about RM40+.

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It is only 8 pm now, but the day had been long..and a little traumatizing for me. I will seek some comfort now blogging a foodie post. Good night foodieventurers! 7 more days of Viet-tronomic adventures!

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Two years had passed……@Red Bean Bag Cafe, Publika Solaris Dutamas

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It had been two years since I last came here for breakfast and coffee…how quickly time had passed. Although I live nearby, I somehow had forgotten about this place as my first experience here was average.

Much has changed too when I reached here. The place was packed to the brim and I had to wait for 20 minutes for a table. I was excited to try out their food and coffee and hope that my second experience here will change my mind for the better.

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Facing the baristas and the coffee brewing machines, I witnessed my ice long black in making. A freshly brewed cuppa espresso poured straight into a cup of ice cold water.

RBB is proud to share to everyone that their beans are roasted by grand central coffee roasters, a premium small batch of coffee roaster in Perth. The coffee I am drinking now is from the 2013 crop.

The cuppa was goooooooddddddd. The aroma was pungent, from freshly ground beans and brew. Having to hand grind my coffee beans now, my sense of taste and smell towards coffee heightened.

Another good point about this is that the hot and the ice long black are both priced at RM7++. No increase in price for the iced! That should be the way for all cafes! It annoys me how most places charge you extra for ice and water which cost is almost negligible.

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This is one of RBB’s signature dish “Signature Baked Eggs”, eggs baked in this ceramic bowl with chopped sausages* potatoes and cheese, served with sliced bread. The dish reminds me a lot of lasagna with a twist due to the eggy flavour and texture. Enough to share for 2 in my opinion as it gets quite filling after a while due to the potatoes and cheese. RM 18++.

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This was also another signature from RBB, The Atlantic. Poached eggs stacked on top of grilled bread, mushrooms and 1 slice of smoked salmon. Once the eggs were cut open, the golden yolk-iliciousness just flowed out like a golden stream. I liked this a lot as they tasted really good. Hearty and healthy. RM22++.

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Those who know me will know that I am famous for being clumsy and careless especially when I am eating. While reading the Tatler Bites mag, the mag foolishly slipped my fingers (not even sure how that could possibly happen, but it did) and it knocked off my half-filled glass of long black. HURRAH! for embarrassment.

What surprised me further was the attentiveness of the staffs, how quickly they dashed in to wipe off the spill and I was also offered a new glass on the house. Honestly I did not expect that and until I arrived at this page on the magazine, only did I realise that the one who served me a new glass was one of the owners.

As what was written on the article, RBB does make good coffee and with such courteous service and attentiveness towards the needs of their patrons, I believe it is a place people can come everyday.

Am glad that my second visit here has changed my mind 360 over. Checked for good food, coffee and service. I will be back!

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Opening hours in the picture. Located at the same floor and row as Nathalie Gourmet.

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