Stunning seafood sees cafe make waves
|Food for feast: Braised tiger prawn with green pepper pot is eaten with rice and mustard green soup as part of the Vietnamese cuisine.
|Posh nosh: Steamed tiger prawn dish is a popular seafood option at Furama resort's Cafe Indochine restaurant.
|Super skewers: Roasted beef is one of the top choices for dinner parties at Furama resort's restaurant in the central Da Nang City. The restaurant is only 3km from the city centre. — VNS Photo courtesy Furama Da Nang resort.
Cafe Indochine in Furama resort Da Nang
Address: Truong Sa Street, Ngu
Hanh Son district, Da Nang City
Tel: 0511-3847333/888. www.furamavietnam.com
Price: VND70,000-1.8 million for a dish
Comment: Delicious food, beautiful ocean view.
With an idyllic setting and dazzling array of beef and seafood dishes, Cafe Indochine is quickly becoming a ‘must-eat' destination for hungry Da Nang tourists, Cong Thanh
reports.Situated beside a swimming pool from where it is only a few steps to the beach, the Cafe Indochine in the five star Furama resort is the best choice for gourmands spending holidays in the coastal central city of Da Nang.
The restaurant's most popular item is seafood, served with steamed rice.
The ocean air, tranquil pool and lighting design make the restaurant a beautiful, romantic destination at night.
The restaurant, which overlooks the sea and is 3km east of the city centre, specialises in seafood, but chef Doan Van Tuan also prepares a mouthwatering roast beef with citronella and Vietnamese rice.
"I have been cooking the beef the same way for over 10 years at different restaurants," Tuan said.
He chooses the best quality loins, then roasts them on a charcoal stove with Vietnamese spices.
Tuan cut up beef into cubes to mix with chopped chili, citronella, curry and coconut milk – all of which contribute to the unique flavour of the dish.
"All chefs know about coconut milk, but the ratio of flavours and the time the beef soaks in the mixture determine the quality of the result," he said.
Pieces of beef are placed on spits and roasted for seven minutes.
The chef finished the dish with sauce of tomato, coconut milk and green chili – a typical seasoning in the central region – and vegetables.
"The dish is actually a mixture of Vietnamese and Indian cuisine. Curry adds the aroma of Indian food, while the spicy sauce makes the beef tasty," he said.
He added that the roasted beef can be served with fried rice and saffron.
A 180-gram serving of roast beef costs VND460,000 (US$21).
"The beef is roasted with different flavours. The curry is reminiscent of the traditional cuisine of India, while the rice is very delicious with a sauce of coconut milk, green chili and gravy," said Luu Huong Thom, a tourist from Quang Binh Province.
"The restaurant is designed with a romantic view. I feel very cool on summer days while looking at the swimming pool through the windows. Tables near the windows are often occupied in the evening when tourists finish swimming in the sea," she said.
She said this was the second time she tasted beef at the resort when she spent holidays here. The last time was in April when the restaurant hosted a barbecue by the swimming pool.
The chef also said that braised and steamed tiger prawns are among the most popular dishes at the restaurant on summer nights.
Tuan peeled off the shells of eight tiger prawns for a set menu for four people and dipped them in a sauce of coconut milk, oyster sauce, salt and green pepper.
The prawns were then stir-fried quickly with garlic before being cooked in a pottery pot for 20 minutes.
Tuan said the prawns were quick and easy to prepare.
"It's a completely Vietnamese-style dish as I use a ceramic pot and include green pepper. The braised prawns are served with rice, salad and mustard green soup, Vietnamese style," the 32-year-old chef said.
"Tiger prawns is one of my favourite dishes. I ordered both braised and steamed prawns to taste the different cooking styles. The coastal city is well-known for its fresh seafood, so the prawns here come from local fishermen," said Tran Ngoc Thanh, a businessman from HCM City.
"I often come to Da Nang for business, and when I do I always reserve a table for dinner here. I enjoy fresh seafood with a glass of wine. The chef changes the seafood selection each week. I find new preparations of lobsters, crabs, squid, beef and pork whenever I come here," Thanh added.
"Although the restaurant is not cheap, they do offer pho (rice noodle soup with beef) for a fairly good price," the businessman added.
The chef said foreign tourists prefer the dishes of local seafood prepared Vietnamese-style.
Tuan said diners can choose steamed tiger prawns instead of salty braised prawns if they prefer.
The seafood is served with wine, Western-style.
The 300-seat restaurant also offers a full menu of Vietnamese traditional foods like pho, rice pancakes, bun cha (rice vermicelli with grilled pork) and my Quang (a noodle dish from the Central region) seven days a week.
"I cook different food each day at the resort. You can enjoy breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I always create a new style of cooking for gourmets. No dish here is repeated more than once in a week," the chef said.
The restaurant is quite close to the city's downtown – just five minutes drive by bus or taxi along the pristine My Khe beach. — VNS