What’s Vietnamese pudding taste like? We had to find out!

Our Japanese-language, world-traveling reporter Ikuna Kamezawa was visiting Hanoi, Vietnam, recently, when, after getting a massage, she received a map designed for Japanese tourists (seen in the photo above). Since she’d been to Hanoi many times, Ikuna didn’t expect to see anything new on it, but as it turned out, there were lots of places she didn’t know about.

The one that most snagged her attention was a something called “Pudding Street.” This surprised Ikuna, who had never seen pudding offered anywhere in Vietnam before. The fact that there was a “Pudding Street” implied that it would be lined with pudding shops…And that was something Ikuna had to check out.

Pudding Street is located north of Hoàn Kiếm Lake, a central landmark in Hanoi. The path from the lake is full of interesting things, so it’s definitely worth taking a walk there if you have the time.

Of course, don’t miss the main event! The first restaurant on Pudding Street is Kem Caramen Duong Hoa, with “Kem Caramen” meaning “pudding” in Vietnamese.

The interior was scattered with dozens of tiny plastic stools, giving it a chaotic feel. Ikuna wondered if this meant that pudding wasn’t a fancy dessert, as it sometimes is in Japan, but a food for the masses. Whatever the case, she definitely had the impression she could sit and eat pudding to her heart’s content.

One pudding from Kem Caramen Duong Hoa costs 8,000 dong (roughly 48 yen or US$0.33).

Pudding these days, at least in Japan, is usually made with lots of eggs and milk, with the end result a really rich custard. But this pudding was totally different. It was about three times lighter than most puddings, and super sweet, as if it was made with condensed milk. And while in Japan most people would order one, many of the customers at Kem Caramen Duong Hoa had two or three spread out on the tables before them.

It was certainly a new experience, one Ikuna was pleased with. So far, Pudding Street was turning out great. She moved on to the next pudding shop, which was called Minci Pudding.

They sold not just pudding but tons of sweets, and people were piling up stuff in their arms to take home. Pudding was a popular choice for many.

One pudding at Minci Pudding cost the same as Kem Caramen Duong Hoa, 8,000 dong.

Ikuna wanted to say that the eggy flavor in this pudding was slightly stronger, but she wasn’t completely sure. In any case, it was super light, almost liquid, like she could drink it down with a straw. Both puddings were so good that Ikuna actually ended up ordering two more of each.

As it turned out, those two restaurants were the only pudding shops on Pudding Street, but once you try their puddings, you’ll understand why they make such a strong impression that the presence of just two shops renamed a whole street. If you have plans to visit Hanoi sometime soon, definitely take some time to check them out!

Shop information
Kem Caramen Duong Hoa
Address: 29 Hang Than Ba Dinh, Hanoi 100000
Website (Facebook)

Minci Pudding
Address: No.5 Nguyen Truong To, Ba Dinh,, Hanoi 10000

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