Saturday, February 03, 2007

Hoi An, Vietnam.

We spent a few days in Hue and took a scenic bus ride down the eastern coast of Vietnam to the port city of Hoi An. One of the few places untouched by the Vietnam war, it retains much of its historic charm. Almost as soon as we arrived, we met Corinne and Greg, a charming and intelligent couple from Vancouver, B.C. We broke from our attempts to stick to a vegetarian diet and shared the first of many excellent meals together with them at the Mango Rooms, a local restaurant of some repute.

Duc, the chef, is Vietnamese, but has traveled extensively and his cooking is an inspired fusion of international flavors ranging from New Orleans to Austria. After appetizers which included vegetable spring rolls and eggplant tempura, Heather had seared blue fin tuna over green and yellow tomatoes. I ordered a bowl of thick noodles in the local style with tofu and Cajun spices. Dessert included delicate won tons filled with a little chocolate sauce and fruit and banana with caramelized rum and brown sugar.

We allowed ourselves a few days here, exploring the preserved historic homes, temples and public halls. I persuaded Heather to take a Vietnamese cooking class with me, which included a short cruise up the river, where I caught this fisherman casting his net.

We're wrapping things up here, getting ready for an early flight tomorrow morning to Singapore and on to Bali!


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