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Green Tangerine Restaurant - Hanoi, Vietnam | Restaurant Review

A Hidden Gem in Hanoi


Restaurant Category : French, Vietnamese

Green Tangerine Restaurant - Hanoi, Vietnam: Picture the bustling chaotic streets of Hanoi; noise, people, vehicles and more are a given here. Now picture a quiet, surreal and aesthetically pleasing get away to grab a bite of mouth-watering French and Vietnamese food and sip on a glass of rich-bodied wine. Sounds heavenly? Well, that is what the Green Tangerine located in the Old Quarter of Hanoi offered us as we set out to discover it.

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The First Impression: The first thing that strikes you upon entering the b>Green Tangerine is the peaceful quietness of the place. The restaurant is located at the famous Old Quarter in Hanoi and the building used to be a French Villa built in 1928. The hues of greens found at the Green tangerine epitomize its name and adds a touch of ethereality to the place. It was an upscale restaurant offering a casual, quaint and cozy dining experience.

Décor and Ambiance: The décor and ambiance of the was one of the nicest compared to other restaurants in Hanoi. The charm of the old French villa with its sprawling terrace and outdoor courtyard was well preserved and the renovation done on the building didn’t spoil or take away any of the quaintness of the old era. The Green Tangerine had an endearing open courtyard with a cobbled stone path and vivid green plants shadowing you while you dine, a beautiful terrace offering alfresco seating and the main house decorated with intricate French and Vietnamese curios and hangings. The tables on the inside were spread with deep purple covers and the tables were set with soft green table napkins bringing in a contrast. Orchids and other flowers were found splayed all around the room creating an aura of an orient feel. With picture frames and intricate wine and pot holders decking the white walls, a beautiful overhead light-hold brightening up the place, pillars towering over to the ceiling, a green bar serving alcohol, different designs of lamps scattered around; the house was a beautiful visual to take in and enjoy. The ambiance offered an elegant touch without being too imposing and one could relax and enjoy the offering in peace at the Green Tangerine.

The Terrace and Courtyard: The terrace and courtyard were great places for those with an inkling for outdoor dining. Surrounded by lush plants, it offered a touch of nature and the cobbled stoned path of the courtyard was a perfect place for a stroll while listening to mellow jazz and blues on guitar. The iron-wrought chairs cushioned with white flat cushions with designs and a well placed table called to you to sink into them and enjoy a cup of hot espresso while taking in the surroundings.

The Food: The food at the Green Tangerine is one of the best amongst all restaurants of Hanoi. The food is a perfect blend of the most unusual French and Vietnamese cuisine and the flavors burst with aroma and each dish is unique. The 2 chefs at Green Tangerine; Stephane Yvin and his wife Huong both come from a tradition of cooking and come up with innovative recipes to create great dishes. The menu is changed every 6 months to keep it fresh and interesting. The Green Tangerine offers a-la-carte menu, a set-lunch menu and a Vietnamese menu.

We started our lunch with an order of Fig Tempura stuffed with goat cheese, bacon, nuts and grapes presented with Vietnamese spice bread. The dish was simply wonderful; full in flavor with just the right finishes. We went on to order the rack of lamb couscous in a stew broth served with spicy surprise balls (frozen curry balls) and a polenta made with tiny pellets of lotus seeds and raisins. My dining partner had the lightly marinated rabbit with lemon grass served on blinis (a kind of buckwheat pancakes) served with chestnut mash, stir fried mushrooms and asparagus from Dalat in Vietnam. The rack of lamb was just perfect; full of flavor, tender and very juicy. The frozen curry balls were something the dish could have been done without. My partner’s rabbit was just ok. A little dry in texture with the blinis not really helping the dish at all. But, each dish was very artistically served and when presented to us, we hardly felt like taking a bite and spoiling it! Our choice for the dessert was the Melted Chocolate Cake with vanilla ice-cream. We were expecting a warm, moist chocolate cake that was soft and gooey but we were presented with a cake that tasted like it had just been thawed recently. No doubt it was still tasty, but we couldn’t help but think how much better it would have been, had it been warm.

We also ordered a bottle of wine; Arlequin Shiraz 2006 from Barossa Valley in Australia. It was fantastic and very typical of the Shiraz you find in Barossa Valley. We each poured a glass and let the wine open up a bit and when we finally took our sips, we were totally relaxed and enjoyed the wine thoroughly. The wine list had a small selection of wines from all over the world at very reasonable prices.
The Calculated Impression: The overall impression of the Green Tangerine of Hanoi was great. With good service and a menu that offered a variety of dishes that varied from meat, fish, vegetables and a good Vietnamese menu, the food at was worth the visit. Had this been a restaurant in New York or London or any other major city in the world, we would have knocked points off for the inconsistent quality of the dishes, but considering it was a find amongst other restaurants in Hanoi, we give it a bombastic rating.

What I liked: The décor, the seating options and the selected wine menu.
What I didn’t like: The inconsistency of the quality of the dishes.
Rating: Bombastic

Address and telephone number for Green Tangerine in Hanoi, Vietnam
48 Hang Be Street
Hoan Kiem District
Hanoi, Vietnam
Tel: (04) 3825-1286

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