Four Việt Nam restaurants receive Michelin stars

June 07, 2023 - 07:36
The restaurants given the honour are Gia, Hibana by Koki and Tầm Vị in Hà Nội along with Anăn Saigon in HCM City.

HÀ NỘI — In a first for Việt Nam, four restaurants were awarded a prestigious Michelin Star during a ceremony on Tuesday night.

The restaurants given the honour are Gia, Hibana by Koki and Tầm Vị in Hà Nội along with Anăn Saigon in HCM City.

The status bestowed on these eateries will elevate Vietnamese cuisine to even higher levels around the world.

They were given the prestigious star from the famous French guidebook for offering high quality cooking and outstanding culinary experiences.

(From left) Chef Peter Cường Franklin of Anăn Saigon, International Director of the Michelin Guide, Gwendal Poullennec, representatives of Tầm Vị restaurant, chef Sam Trần of Gia Restaurant, and head chef Yamaguchi Hiroshi of Koki Restaurant on the stage of the Michelin Guide Ceremony in Hà Nội on Tuesday night. — Photos courtesy of the organisers

Gia (Hà Nội) is a Vietnamese contemporary restaurant, run by chef Sam Trần. The award is recognition for its menu that changes with the seasons and is inspired by Vietnamese culinary heritage. Sam Trần also has been granted the Michelin Young Chef Award which recognises a young chef working in a restaurant of the selection and whose exceptional talent and great potential impressed inspectors.

Chef Sam Trần from the 1-Michelin Star restaurant Gia has been granted the Michelin Young Chef Award. 

Hibana by Koki (Hà Nội) presents a theatrical experience at a 14-seat counter in the basement of Capella Hotel, with chef Hiroshi Yamaguchi skillfully and precisely cooked teppanyaki dishes rich in complex flavours.

Chef Hiroshi Yamaguchi of the Hibana by Koki receives the 1 Michelin Star recognition given by International Director of the Michelin Guide, Gwendal Poullennec.

Tầm Vị (Hà Nội) is a vintage tea house that feels distinctly northern Vietnamese with its nostalgic collection of traditional furniture and hand-written calligraphies. They serve northern Vietnamese dishes with some central and southern options.

Chef Peter Cường Franklin on the stage to receive the 1-Michelin Star recognition for his Anăn Saigon Restaurant.

Anăn Saigon (HCM City), is a Vietnamese contemporary restaurant, whose Vietnamese-American chef Peter Cường Franklin applies modern cooking techniques to street food recipes to create enticing flavours. The restaurant was named Việt Nam's best restaurant in 2021 and 39th in Asia by the website on the 'Asia's 50 Best Restaurants' list.

Chef Peter Cường Franklin of Anăn Saigon applies modern cooking techniques to street food recipes to create enticing flavours. Every dish is a masterclass of well-balanced flavours and textures. — Photo courtesy of
Anan Saigon

"It’s not easy to run a restaurant. When we opened ours six years ago, we went through six months without a single customer, but now everyone has accepted our food," chef Cường Franklin said after receiving the recognition.

Also at the ceremony, 29 establishments with 13 in Hà Nội and 16 in HCM City were awarded a Bib Gourmand (Inspectors’ Favourites for Quality Cooking at Moderate Prices).

The Bib Gourmand distinction highlights the restaurants within the Michelin Guide restaurant selection that stand out for value-for-money offers. Out of the 29 Bib Gourmand establishments, more than half offer Vietnamese cuisine or street food, strongly reflecting the high popularity of street food being rooted in the local culture.

A total of 70 other eateries (32 in Hà Nội and 38 in HCM City) also joined the Michelin Guide Hà Nội and HCM City 2023 selection, known as the Michelin Selected restaurants.

If street food and local cuisine are again widely represented in this selection, the traffic of international travellers to Việt Nam allows the blossom of various cuisine types. A good mix of French, European, Japanese, Italian, Spanish, Latin American or Mediterranean restaurants are for example featured.

Among the selected are La Badiane (Hà Nội), a charming French restaurant with fusion cuisine; Truffle (HCM City), a French contemporary restaurant; T.U.N.G dining (Hà Nội), The Monkey Gallery Dining (HCM City) both with European contemporary cuisine; Akira Back (Hà Nội) serving Japanese cuisine, Octo (HCM City) serving Spanish cuisine, and Quán Ăn Ngon (Hà Nội) with its traditional Vietnamese delicacies.

In addition to recommending quality restaurants, the Michelin Guide also aims to highlight talented individuals who contribute to enhancing the gastronomic dining experience.

Alongside the Michelin Young Chef Award given to chef Sam Trần, the Michelin Service Award, aiming to highlight and encourage skilled and talented front-of-house professional who dramatically adds to the customer experience, was granted to Nguyễn Thị Nụ from Michelin Selected restaurant Vietnam House in HCM City.

The Michelin Sommelier Award recognises the skills, knowledge, and passion of talented sommelier of the industry, and is given to Yu Yamamoto from Michelin Selected restaurant Lửa in HCM City.

“We’re very proud to finally present the first restaurant selection in Vietnam, with a total of 103 restaurants in the Guide, highlighting four restaurants awarded with one Michelin Star,” said Gwendal Poullennec, International Director of the Michelin Guide.

“The first selection in Hà Nội and HCM City highlights the differences and variety in what these two cities have to offer.

“This is just the beginning of the Michelin Guide’s journey in Việt Nam, and our inspectors have been more than pleased to have discovered many gastronomic spots in Hà Nội and HCM City, and I am sure, many more in the coming years.”

The arrival of the Michelin Guide in Việt Nam is supported by the Sun Group – a real estate developer specialising in luxurious resorts and world-class entertainment complexes.

Chairman of Sun Group Đặng Minh Trường said: “The inaugural edition of the Michelin Guide Hanoi & HCM City marks a significant milestone for the Vietnamese culinary scene.

"Through this opportunity, we hope to recognise the dedication and hard work of the destination’s top chefs and restaurants, and to celebrate the diversity and complexity of Vietnamese cuisine.

“We believe that the Michelin Guide will inspire and drive innovation and excellence in the industry, and I am excited to see how it will shape the culinary landscape in Việt Nam in the years to come.” — VNS