HCMC Dining Guide

Friday, March 30, 2012

A Grande Night

Last night I went with five of my friends from the bike ride to the swanky Nikko Hotel, which is just a couple blocks from my house, for an all-you-can-eat Mexican buffet that also had free-flow booze.

Mexican cuisine is a noticeable weak spot in Saigon's dining scene, and for expats (especially Americans) accustomed to quality fare from south of the border, this sucks. This 'Viva Mexico' week-long special buffet, which was helmed by a Mexican chef, was too good of an opportunity to pass up then, even at a price of $40. We planned to put a hurting on the place.
The spread was mighty impressive, including salad fixings, seafood, quesedillas, ceviche (although the Vietnamese staff had no idea what I was talking about when I asked for it), tacos, chicken mole, lamb barbacoa, Mexican rice, dessert, and several other dishes.

octopus ceviche
you could hand-pick lobsters and crabs to be grilled for you

After powering through at least four or five plates piled high with goodies, I was horribly stuffed. I simply can't control myself at buffets, and everyone else had overeaten as well. It didn't help that everything was absolutely delicious. Still, we hadn't just come for the food, so it was time to speed up the drinking. We stayed until we got kicked out so they could close the restaurant down after having four shots of tequila, four margaritas, and a beer each. Normally I would be fairly hammered after downing that much alcohol, but with all of the food in my stomach acting as a sponge I barely felt a thing.

We all waddled into a taxi and headed to the Pham, hoping to go out for the night, but each of us felt like we were about to blow. As soon as we got out of the cab, Phong and Quinn puked in the grass.
there will be vomit
I managed to keep everything in, but this provided an explosive finish to a good night. We were quickly slipping into food comas and went home instead. 


  1. I always think it's a shame that Mexican food isn't appreciated that much outside of North America, especially in Asia, where it's almost unheard of. I think Mexican cuisine is the best in the entire world. The best Mexican food I had outside of North America was at Viva in Phnom Penh.

    It looks like you had a pretty awesome fiesta in Saigon! The beer and tequila are the icing on the cake. I'm pretty jealous!

  2. Looks well worth the 30 bucks! Yummmm

  3. Jared - Agreed, Mexican is one of my favorites. I guess it hasn't spread like Indian or Lebanese food because there aren't really that many Mexicans outside of North America.

    Mimsie - It was completely worth it!

  4. That food looks amazing dude.