ELLE Exclusive: From Comforting Bowls of Pho To Scrumptious Bánh Mìs, VietNom Brings A Slice Of Vietnam To Mumbai


Phos, Bánh Mìs, and Summer Rolls – these are some dishes I tried when I visited Ho Tram, Vietnam, last June for a short work trip. When I read these familiar names on the menu of Bandra’s new Vietnamese restaurant, VietNom, I was excited to indulge in the cuisine again now that it’s available so much closer to home. Though new to Mumbai, VietNom serves as the fifth outpost – following its launch in DLF Cyberhub (the first that launched in 2019) and Worldmark (Gurgaon), DLF Saket (New Delhi), and Assagao (Goa) led by Sahil Sambhi, the visionary behind the restaurant. Eager to try VietNom’s offerings, I braced myself on a rainy day to comfort myself with Southeast Asian flavours on a Monday afternoon.  

The Backstory

After visiting Vietnam and falling in love with its culinary offerings, Sambhi didn’t just want to open a restaurant but bring Vietnamese culture and an authentic dining experience to patrons. He met with His Excellency Pham Sanh Chau, the Vietnamese Ambassador to India, to share his vision of opening the first authentic Vietnamese restaurant in Delhi NCR. Further, Sambhi told ELLE that “Ambassador Pham Sanh Chau graciously facilitated our journey by connecting us with local vendors and arranging for a knowledgeable guide to assist us in sourcing raw materials and ingredients directly from Vietnam.” During the visit, Chef Bhim B. Tamang (the brand chef at VietNom) and his team received training at two local restaurants, along with in-home visits and conversations with local Vietnamese people to better understand their festivals, culture, and eating habits.

The Ambience

Soft, monotone interiors and natural materials like rope, jute, and cane in beige, ivory, and light grey shades create an inviting atmosphere that captures Vietnam’s timeless charm across two floors. While the ground floor features limited seating with the view of the homey bar in front of you, the top floor is the real deal with its long community table and cosy corners nestled against the backdrop of windows, perfect for enjoying the rains this season. 

The Flavours

Saigon Style Wheat Noodles

VietNom’s extensive menu is bold and bright, with pictorial representations of dishes to help you identify what you’re ordering. Being a coastal city, expect more seafood-forward dishes in the Mumbai outpost balanced with vegetarian options. 

Chef Bhim and Chef Phankri Bey, who trained at prestigious establishments like JW Marriott Sahar Mumbai and The Oberoi, New Delhi, bring the vibrant culinary fare to life.

Summer Rolls

I began my meal with a dish that was as traditional as it got – the Vietnamese cold coffee, brewed and made at the table before it was served. The lunch continued with appetising Avocado and Salmon Summer Rolls or Gỏi Cuốn – a favourite street food in Vietnam, widely loved for their lightness and the perfect balance of textures – with diced vegetables, salmon, and avocado wrapped in rice paper rolls. Refreshing as is, this dish is elevated to a flavour bomb status when paired with Nuoc Cham, a traditional Vietnamese sweet, sour and spicy dipping sauce made from a blend of fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic, chilli, and water. 

Bánh mì

Next, I tried tofu Bánh mì and was pleasantly surprised with how light and airy the bread was. The Bánh mì is a Vietnamese sandwich traditionally served on soft French baguettes and stuffed with meat and pickled vegetables, and is available at VietNom with pork, chicken, tofu, or mushrooms. Then came the dish I eagerly awaited–the Pho, a mild aromatic noodle soup. Staring at me were fresh homemade rice noodles floating with tender chicken pieces along with bean sprouts, and spring onions, laden with herbs and spices in a pool of chicken broth. The steaming hot Pho felt like a warm hug to my belly and brought in some comfort against the backdrop of the cold, chaotic weather outside. It emerged as the best dish for me. 


While I was pretty satisfied with the Pho, I couldn’t resist trying the restaurant’s signature chicken mango curry with sticky rice, another lip-smacking item on the menu. I won’t lie; I wish I could eat more, but only had space for dessert. VietNom does its own version of a Pomelo Mint Mango Sago, which is light as a cloud and not too sweet, two factors that I always look for in a dessert, given that I’m usually full at the end of the main course.

Dim sum

Other recommendations include Turmeric Fish (traditionally known as Chả Cá Thăng Long), a piquant river sole fillet delicately cooked in coconut cream, dill, and red onion, served with steamed rice noodles. Tracing its origin back to Hanoi, this dish is celebrated for its unique flavour profile and the communal dining experience it fosters, as it is typically cooked at the table and shared among friends and family. If you love salads, papaya and pomelo salad tossed in Vietnamese herbs, peanuts, and chilli dressing is a must-try. Another option would be the juicy, succulent Chilli Chicken dumplings with lemongrass chilli sauce or the Activated Charcoal Ginger Chicken Dumplings. For desserts, I’d also recommend trying the VietNom Coffee Tiramisu Pot, a fusion of flavours that offers a delightful twist on a classic, and Roll It–Shrimp Mousse On Sugarcane Skewers, a traditional southern dish available throughout Vietnam made from marinated shrimp, wrapped onto thin pieces of sugarcane, grilled, and served with nuac cham.

Bar Programme

You can complement your meal with a refreshing selection of handcrafted cocktails and mocktails made with homemade cordials, fresh herbs, and premium spirits. Take your pick from VietNom signatures like the Hanoi Dance (whisky, coconut, and jasmine rice syrup, pandan cordial, citrus aromatic bitters, and almond milk), The Persistence of Memory (tequila, Earl Grey, Campari, sweet vermouth, and limoncello foam) or Romeo & Juliet (featuring green cherry tomato, celery stick, vodka, cream cheese, and sparkling wine). The Old Man and the Sea, crafted with white rum, espresso, pineapple, pink grapefruit, and sea salt, is the ideal pick for coffee lovers. But my personal favourite was Summer In VietNom; infused with mango sous-vide vodka, pandan cordial, coconut, and mango fig water, the flavours of this cocktail hit all the right spots.

ELLE’s Verdict

Launched right in time for the monsoons, VietNom is the perfect dining spot to head to with your loved ones for soul-satisfying, flavourful Vietnamese food that will surely serve as the perfect pick-me-up on a dull, gloomy day.

- Lifestyle Editor


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