There is something captivating about the Mekong Delta. Vietnam’s own water world, the region is a kaleidoscope of caramel rivers, rustling forests, painted boats, eye-catching markets, and smiling people. And then there’s the food.
All year long, the fertile soil of the Mekong yields an abundant crop of fruit, rice and vegetables. Slow moving waterways and fish pens are alive with shrimp and river fish. All the elements for incredible eating are here. If you think food is half the fun of travelling, then read on for a culinary journey through the Mekong Delta, as well as a five-star recipe for caramelized fish in claypot.
While the entire country of Vietnam is a foodie hotspot, in the Mekong ‘real’ restaurants are rare. More likely you’ll find many tiny eateries and stalls preparing one or two dishes the same way they have for years. Some of your best meals may be eaten sitting at a tiny metal table on the sidewalk.
Le Longanier Restaurant has been recommended as one of the best restaurants in the Delta, where you can get your fix.
Le Longanier Restaurant is located in Cai Be, on the way to Can Tho or Chau Doc. Set in a lush tropical garden by the river and surrounded by fruit plantations, Le Longanier is a gorgeous two-story villa modeled after a turn-of-the-century French colonial home, recreating the refined atmosphere of traditional Indochina.
A walk around the house reveals plantation shutters, carved lanterns and vintage ceiling fans indicative of the East meets West architecture of the era. Named after the longan trees found in the garden, this quiet spot on the river showcases some of the region’s products and rustic cooking styles combining fresh herbs, local fruits and vegetables and local fish.
Le Longanier opens for lunch only. Advance reservation at 1800599955 is highly recommended.