Little Black Duck
23 Ngo Gach, Hoan kiem District Hanoi, Vietnam
How we ended up eating here for our last dinner in Hanoi is completely ridiculous and utterly unbelievable. Earlier that day, we’d visited the notorious Hoa Lo Prison, where we got chatting to another few Aussie travellers; they told us they’d been at the night market the night before and were getting hungry, finding it difficult to find a restaurant. They were right – we had the same problem! They told us they took a chance, turned down a side street, and walked into the first eatery they could find, a place called the Little Black Duck. They said it was one of the best meals they’d had in Hanoi, and recommended asking for directions to it, if we had time before flying home. We saved the name in my phone, said our goodbyes and went on our separate ways.
Later that night, we found ourselves in market territory once again. We were getting hungry. And my sister really needed to use a bathroom. We got to that point where it was a matter of “let’s just go into the first place we see.” That didn’t work out so well; the first place we came across smelt like stale urine. We kept walking. Just as Sib was about to hit breaking point, I dragged her off the main road and down a side street. I saw a little black sign overhead with a picture of a duck. Are you freakin kidding me?!? The sign out the front, advertising the same special the other Aussies had raved about, sealed the deal; in we went.
The staff were lovely, very accommodating, taking us straight up to the second floor and taking our drink orders. While we weren’t starving (we’d been snacking on street food on the way), we were ready for some good food, and that’s what we got. Sib went with the Vietnamese Mango Salad with pork and prawns (only AUD$3.50!!); refreshing, full of flavour, really delicious!
I went with the recommended special – the fresh duck spring rolls, again only AUD$3.50. Ridiculous. Some of the best rice paper rolls I’ve ever had (and am ever likely to have); you’d have been charged $15, easily, at home for something of that quality.
Completely unexpected and crazy delicious, we couldn’t believe our luck actually stumbling on this place! If you’re in Hanoi, don’t leave it to chance – give your cab driver the address and enjoy some seriously good food!