The Secret’s Out. Com Nha – Homemade Meals in Saigon
Is there no end to the variety and excellence of food here in Vietnam? Possibly not, but you might be getting tired of the usual staples. My latest discovery lets you experience authentic Vietnamese homemade meals in Saigon, and it’s right in the centre of the city. It’s a bit of a secret and appears to have no social media presence except an Instagram account. (Please let me know if you found different) It’s squirrelled away on the second floor of a building in Đồng Khởi with a small and unobtrusive sign out the front. You may not spy it if you’re just walking along as its way above eye level. The owner of this little gem is definitely not out there advertising their presence. Despite this, we struggled to get a seat when we arrived at lunchtime. It was a great sign that all the customers were locals.
I’m afraid I can’t take any of the kudos for making the find. The lovely Tram from Saigon Hotpot introduced my husband, my friend from Hong Kong and I to the delicious tastes of Com Nha – Homemade meals as part of our day out last week. The menu is extremely limited. In fact, they only serve one main course…A week!!! Yes; you read that right. They do have a couple of starters, but the real attraction is the one weekly special of a number of home cooked dishes. ” If you want to try something different then you’ll just have to come in a weeks time.
To order, ask for “1 Com Nha for “X” people.” You’ll receive soup, a meat/seafood dish, vegetables, another side, rice and a plate of fruit at the end. They simply scale the amounts for the group. There were four of us, and there was plenty to go around. It’s much like having a family meal which is the usual way of eating in Vietnam. It is rare to eat alone, and they think us westerners are weird when we order a plate to ourselves. The locals like to try everything and sharing is one way of doing that.
This week’s meal consisted of steamed bok choy, omelette, pork and shrimp in tamarind sauce and a tasty vegetarian soup (which contained egg, so not Vegan). Each was a very simple dish but full of flavour and quite delicious. Just like….well just like a homemade meal! The fruit of the day was a plate of tiny, tart “Vietnamese Cherries”.
We spent almost 2 hours in the congenial surrounds. Even though it was busy, the noise level was quite low so we could talk comfortably. The interior was light and airy and the quirky artwork bold without being intrusive. The staff were efficient and very pleasant. We didn’t need to communicate with them except for pleasantries as Tram did the honours, so I’m not sure about the level of English spoken. I guess I’ll find out next time.
We each had two drinks, and the total bill came to just 315 000 VND….ie. That’s LESS THAN $15 USD (~ $3.75 a head). Considering the location (once you find it!), the quality of the food and the ambience of the restaurant I think that’s a complete bargain.
I’m not sure I want to let the secret out…I might have to make a booking next time. Com Nha – Homemade meals are found on the second floor at 151/6 Đồng Khởi. Walk down the alley and up the stairs to the second floor. Turn right and go straight till you reach the kitchen. They have a hotline if you want to call ahead. That’s probably not a bad idea if you’re in a hurry as the food is prepared fresh as ordered and can take some time. It’s also very popular from what I could see so you might have to wait for a seat if you don’t.
Details for finding these delicious homemade meals in Saigon:
Name: Com Nha – Homemade Meals
Address: Second floor at 151/6 Đồng Khởi.
Hotline for Bookings: Ph 0909 263 090.
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