Explore 9 Specialty Dishes of Sa Pa – Delectable Delights in the Misty Town

August 4, 2020 8 mins to read
 Sa Pa is renowned as a captivating tourist destination in the Northwest region, with its distinctive chilly climate. Alongside its mesmerizing landscapes, the area boasts unique natural attractions gifted by Mother Nature. Moreover, visitors to the foggy city are immensely impressed by the famous specialties of Sa Pa, resonating deeply with the cultural flavors of the Northwestern people.

The cuisine in Sa Pa is simple yet rich in authentic flavors, utilizing rustic ingredients but brimming with irresistible charm. While their appearance may not be overly elaborate, these exotic dishes will tantalize your taste buds. To fully explore Sa Pa’s delicious and unique specialties, join Vietnampeace.com on this journey below!

1. Cốn Sủi (Sủi Rice Noodles)

No list of famous Sa Pa specialties would be complete without Cốn Sủi – a dish prepared similarly to Hanoi’s pho, with a distinctive rich broth, perfectly seasoned and fragrantly enticing. You’ll find a sprinkling of crispy fern roots or sweet potatoes atop the bowl, combined with shredded pork, beef, half a boiled egg, pepper, and peanuts. This harmonious combination brings out the allure and charm of the dish.

Priced around 30,000 – 45,000 VND per bowl, you can head to Cốn Sủi Ông Há: 436 Dien Bien Phu Street, Sa Pa Town, Sa Pa, Lao Cai, a renowned establishment well-known to many.

2. Grilled Stream Fish

These fish, typically the size of a small dagger, live in schools and are used to create a highly enticing grilled dish. The fish exudes a natural sweetness with firm and non-fishy flesh when eaten. Enjoying this Sa Pa specialty alongside a glass of San Lung wine from the Northwest will surely leave an unforgettable impression. If you get the chance, experience catching and grilling the fish yourself! It’s not only a delightful exploration but also offers a sense of immersion in the natural landscapes of the foggy land.

Alternatively, equally enticing, you can indulge in this specialty at the suggested addresses below. The price for grilled stream fish in Sa Pa is around 120,000 VND per plate.

Check out these addresses for grilled stream fish:

A Phu Restaurant: No. 15 Fansipan, Sa Pa, Lao Cai
Thai Bac Restaurant: Km12 Silver Waterfall Tourist Area, Sa Pa, Lao Cai

3. Black Chicken Meat

Another name for black chicken is a breed raised by the H’Mong ethnic group, free-range, and used in many daily dishes. Consuming black chicken is believed to have various health benefits and is considered a folk remedy particularly beneficial for those recovering from illness or the elderly.

Black chicken meat is often grilled with honey, preserving its distinctive aroma and tender, succulent skin. Served alongside a mixture of salt, pepper, and lime, it’s a match made in heaven.

Price range: 100,000 – 275,000 VND per portion.

Places to try black chicken:

– Gerbera Restaurant: 31 Cau May, Sapa, Lao Cai
– Sapa Smile: 18 Cau May, Sapa, Lao Cai

4. Thang Co (Horse Meat Hotpot)

Wandering through the love markets or local markets, tourists can easily find a unique Sa Pa specialty known as Thang Co. This traditional dish of the H’Mong people has been around for over a hundred years. It’s a soup made from horse meat, organs, and bones. Most visitors are surprised, even slightly taken aback, when they learn about the origin of this dish. However, you’ll find it captivating upon tasting, leaving an unforgettable flavor.

There are many places in Sa Pa where you can enjoy delicious Thang Co, priced around 100,000 – 330,000 VND per portion. Here are some recommended spots:

– Thang Co Sapa A Phu: 15 Fansipan, Sa Pa, Lao Cai
– Cau May Sapa Restaurant: 92 Ngu Chi Son, Sa Pa Town, Lao Cai

5. Pork Armpit Meat

If you’re wondering what specialties Sa Pa offers, Pork Armpit Meat is an excellent choice. This dish is made from free-range pigs raised by the H’Mong people, weighing around 5-6kg each. Despite their small size, the meat boasts a delicious fragrance, crispy golden skin, tender flesh, and a savory aroma that won’t overwhelm. During market gatherings, pigs are often “carried under the armpit” and sold. This explains the peculiar yet endearing name.

Indulging in a plate of Pork Armpit Meat alongside some apple wine will enhance your enjoyment of its flavors. Price reference: Pork Armpit Meat in Sa Pa averages around 100,000 – 120,000 VND per kilogram.

Places to buy authentic Pork Armpit Meat in Sa Pa:

– Red Dzao House: 4b Silver Waterfall, Sa Pa Town, Lao Cai
– Do Quyen Restaurant: 214 Thach Son, Sa Pa Town, Lao Cai

6. Smoked Buffalo Meat

Smoked buffalo meat is a renowned dish and a beloved Sa Pa specialty. Also known as smoked buffalo jerky, it originates from the practice of preserving meat on rainy days by the locals.

Upon tasting, you’ll find the meat somewhat challenging initially, but as it softens, it releases the sweet flavor of buffalo meat, slightly chewy yet tender, leaving diners enraptured. This makes it an ideal choice for gifts to family and friends when visiting Sa Pa.

The retail price of smoked buffalo meat in Sa Pa usually ranges from 750,000 – 850,000 VND per kilogram, while wholesale prices vary from 680,000 – 720,000 VND per kilogram for purchases of 5kg or more.

Places to buy delicious smoked buffalo meat in Sa Pa:

– Duy Chien: 057 Thach Son Street, Sa Pa, Lao Cai
– Sapa Night Market: Dien Bien Phu Street, Sa Pa, Lao Cai
– An Thinh: Located on Cau May Street, Sa Pa Town, Lao Cai

7. Salmon

With its fantastic climate, Sa Pa is ideal for salmon farming. Unlike salmon from other regions or imports, Sa Pa salmon boasts firm, fresh, succulent flesh without excessive fat and a soft, unique taste. Salmon is prepared in various ways, from steaming and making salads to frying, making sashimi, or hotpot with various fresh Northwestern vegetables, creating unforgettable flavors.

The price of Sa Pa salmon averages from 230,000 to 500,000 VND per kilogram, depending on quantity, weight, and type of fish.

Places to try Sa Pa salmon:

– Sapa Xuân Viên Salmon: 08 Xuân Viên Street, Sa Pa
– Sapa Dong Nhi Salmon: Silver Waterfall, Sa Pa
– Sapa Silver Waterfall Salmon: Km12 Silver Waterfall Tourist Area, Sa Pa

8. Apple Wine

In Sa Pa, you must try apple wine, another renowned local specialty. This wine is made pure by the locals, soaked with top-quality apples harvested from the Northern mountains.

With its unique sweet and sour flavor, the wine takes on a light yellow color akin to amber, with an unforgettable aroma after soaking. Just one sip, and you’ll feel like you’re experiencing the Northwest region firsthand, as this wine embodies the distinctive taste of the Sa Pa region.

It’s not an exaggeration to say that every dish in Sa Pa becomes a heavenly delight when paired with a glass of apple wine. Apple wine in Sa Pa is currently priced at around 60,000 – 90,000 VND per liter.

Where to buy apple wine:

– H’Mong Wine Cooperative Sa Pa: 130 Dien Bien Phu Street, Sa Pa
– Northwest Liquor Store: 09 Silver Waterfall, Sa Pa, Lao Cai
– Thanh Kim Corn Wine: Ban Den, Thanh Kim, Sa Pa, Lao Cai

9. Sour Salted Pork

This is one of the dishes not to be missed when visiting Sa Pa. Sour salted pork is prepared by boiling fresh pork until cooked, then soaking it in wine, salt, and bay leaves. The meat is left to soak for 2 – 3 weeks to impart the most decadent flavor.

Upon tasting, you’ll experience a salty, tangy, and crispy texture, guaranteed to please. You can enjoy it with rice or as a snack. Either way, it’s delicious! You can find this dish in many places or purchase it as a gift for your family while sightseeing. One of the most famous addresses is Little Sapa 2 Restaurant (located at 38 Cau May, Sa Pa, Lao Cai), with prices of around 150,000 VND per portion.

Sa Pa specialties are incredibly diverse and unique, with some unusual yet delicious dishes that will leave a lasting impression on visitors. Readers will likely gain helpful information through this article on Sa Pa specialty dishes, making it easier to find unique and enticing dishes when visiting Sa Pa.

Cá hồi vân Sapa

Sapa rainbow trout (Photo: Collectibles)

Cá hồi vân Sapa

Salmon hotpot (Photo: collectibles)

Salmon salad (Photo: collectibles)

Ethnic cuisine (Photo: Collectibles)

Warm in the cold weather with the bowl of victory (Image: Collectibles)

(Photo: Collectibles)

Tourists are spoiled for choice grilled skewers (Photo: Nguyen Nhu Quynh)

Sauteed chayote with garlic (Photo: Collectibles)

Roasted cat cabbage rolls (Image: Collectibles)

Stir-fried Chinese mustard (Photo: Collectibles)

The meat bar is dark brown outside … (Photo: Collectibles)

… The inside is naturally red (Image: Collectibles)

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