Western Breakfast in Saigon

Don’t get me wrong my eyes light up when a sizzling plate of Bo Ne (steak, eggs, onion and pate served with a baguette) hits my table and my heart skips a beat as I sip my Bo Kho (beef stew) broth on the side of the street as motorbikes flash by but sometimes I just want a goddamn Western style breakfast.

Vietnamese steak and eggs (Bo Ne) on grill plate

I’m just not talking about an English fry-up or a bacon and egg roll (love both of these and eat them regularly at home), I’m talking about pretentious over the top breakfasts. I want #instaworthy ones, smashed avocado that cost more than a decent steak, pancakes stacked so high you’re scared to even look at them in case they topple over and deconstructed Acai bowls served with a strong HOT flat white. I can only blame Melbourne and it’s every changing breakfast/brunch scene for my love overpriced breakfasts.

I’ve searched the city, going to some of the most suggested breakfast spots, all in the name of research to bring you the details on where to eat, what’s hot and what’s not for Western Breakfast in Saigon.

Before we start, some things you should know:

  • Price: Western breakfasts are going to cost you a lot more than any Vietnamese breakfast’s you can get. Usually starting at around 100k dong. This is still far cheaper than you would pay back in Australia/America.
  • Service: Western hospitality has yet to hit Vietnam on a global scale and finding good service here is extremely hard. Don’t expect the kind of service you’d receive back home.

RATING KEY:

***** go there now!
**** visit on the weekend
*** hey that’s pretty good
** If you’re in the area and hungry
* If it’s the last option

LuBu

*****
LuBu is everything I expect from a cafe, the service is friendly and efficient. The decor has a Mediterranean vibe, with lots of clean crisp blues and whites, you could almost feel you were beachside in Santorini.

From Monday – Friday the breakfast/brunch menu is smaller than the weekend but you can get two breakfasts for the price of one. My personal favourite dish is the sourdough toast with house-made halloumi, fresh hummus, pickled beetroot and a fried egg. On Saturday and Sunday, you can get a free bloody mary with any breakfast/brunch order the menu is also more extensive offering up more experimental dishes like Chickpea Waffles with Feta and Tomato and Green Eggs and Ham; thick cut ham with potato rosti and spinach sauce.

You can tell the owner Jim, an Australian, really takes pride in his restaurant with everything being made in-house and the excellent service. For this reason, this is my number one pick for the best western breakfast in Saigon.

runny yolk on hummus toast at Lubu Bloody Mary Birdseye view Lubu

Additional info – 
Opens – 7 days a week 8:30am  – 10pm 
97 B Thao Dien, Q2,Hồ Chí Minh

Au Parc

****
This is the place to come on the weekends if you’re hungry and love carbs! You get your choice of egg dish, a whole basket of bread, 3 sides (sautéed potatoes and tomatoes, hummus and crudités, bagel with spreads) dessert,  coffee and fresh juice all for 270k ($15 AUD). A real bang for your buck!

Breakfast spread of eggs, bread, jams, and potatoes at Au Parc

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 7:30am — 11pm
23 Han Thuyen, District 1, Hồ Chí Minh

The Loop

**
Service here sucks, the staff all seem to be in another world, you’ll more than likely have to get the menu yourself and practically beg for there attention but the food is pretty good and they have a fair few vegan options for breakfast. They also do breakfast combos where you get a smoothie, coffee, main dish and side. I highly recommend the Vegan World – the tofu burrito taste amazing just a little small.

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 7am – 9pm
49 Đường Thảo Điền, Thảo Điền, Quận 2, Hồ Chí Minh

The Vintage Emporium

***
The decor and menu is probably the closest thing to a Melbourne Cafe you’ll get in Saigon – Avocado toast, Beetroot lattes (be warned very sweet) and Acai smoothie bowls. The food is pretty good but the service is below average and the coffee sucks! You can get better coffee at 711.

Beetroot latte from The Vintage Emporium

Falafels and salad at Vintage Emporium

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a we
ek 7am – 9pm
95 Nguyễn Văn Thủ, Đa Kao, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh 

Bunker 

****
There’s not much on the menu in terms of “breakfast food” but they have everything you need. Breakfast burger, breakfast burrito, waffles, big breakfast, french toast and pancakes with bacon eggs and maple syrup – damn good pancakes that are super fluffy and the coffee is surprisingly good. You should also try there grilled chicken burger it’s amazing, the best-grilled chicken burger I’ve eaten.

breakfast burrito Pancakes with Bacon and Eggs

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 8:30am – 11pm 
79/2/1 phan ke Binh, District 1, Hồ Chí Minh

Madhouse

***
If you’re looking for a place to breathe away from the chaotic city this is it! The whole place feels tranquil with outdoor seating surrounded by plants and water features with comfy lounges and on some weekends they have live music. Not the best coffee but still drinkable and the food is prepared with care. Side note – they have some of the best rice paper rolls i’ve ever had with a dipping sauce you’ll want to drink.

Ricepaper rolls at Madhouse

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 8am – 10pm
6/1/2 Nguyen U Di, Thao Dien, District 2, Hồ Chí Minh

Jaspas

***
A classic in Saigon with a decent range of breakfast items nothing too exciting just some good old classics. The avocado toast with poached eggs is good value and I really enjoyed the mix of nuts on top they added a nice texture and taste. The pancakes were average and could be fluffier and lighter, the coffee is average.

Pancakes and avocado toast at Jaspas

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 7am – 11pm
 33 Đồng Khởi, Phường Bến Nghé, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh

The Boathouse

*
This place is in a gated community along the riverfront and the price will reflect that ( the most expensive place I’ve eaten at in all of Vietnam excepts for all you can eat). That doesn’t mean its good, I was let down with the breakfast menu and highly disappointed when I received my food. The potatoes were cold and semi-raw, the steak tasted funny and lacked flavouring, the whole overall dish was greasy and I ended up getting violent food poisoning after eating here. All the other reviews seem to be positive, I had a bad experience. Go at your own discretion.

Steak and eggs at Boathouse

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week 7:30 am – 10pm
40 Lily Road, APSC, 36 Thao Dien, Q. 2, Hồ Chí Minh

Market 39 

****

There’s no way I could make a list of places and not include buffet breakfast. On the weekends Market 39 serves a killer buffet brunch, and I’m not talking eggs and bacon. Instead, you’ll get options like sushi, roast meats, cheeses and fresh seafood. You can opt for the drinks package and get free flow on beer and wine so you can stuff your face and get f**cked up all at once. It is a little more pricey but if you’re a freak for fresh cooked lobster and crabs than it’s worth the price.

 

Cooked Lobster from Market 39

Additional info –
Opens – 7 days a week with all different hours, check their website.
Lobby Level, corner Hai Ba Trung &, Lê Duẩn, st, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh

Mekong Merchant 

**

This place looks pretty dodgy on the outside but once you walk through the doors it’s a little oasis. The service is ok, you have to keep asking to have your water refilled which can get old quite quickly. Avocado toast with poached eggs is flavourful with the addition of chilli and sun-dried tomatoes but the serving is quite small, the coffee is sub-par. The do sell freshly baked bread, croissants and bagels to take home.

Avocado toast with poached eggs.

Opens – 7 days a week 7am – 11pm
23 Đường Thảo Điền, Thảo Điền, Quận 2, Hồ Chí Minh 

 

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