For amazing views of the Saigon’s cityscape and delicious sharing plates, head to the top at OnTop Bar
Opened in 2012, OnTop Bar located on the 20th floor of Novotel Saigon Centre (167 Hai Ba Trung, D3, opens at 5:30pm), has breathtaking views of Ho Chi Minh City. On a clear night this is a great place to sit outside on the terrace, enjoying the breeze and a sprawling landscape of urban architecture that continues to expand further and higher.
Once we relaxed on a soft cushioned seat and settled in, a member of the wait staff offered us one of their signature cocktails, a Vietnamese-style mojito, which includes lemongrass and chili (VND165,000++). It was good, with the sourness of the lime contrasted by hints of spiciness. As we waited for the food, a look around the venue shows a Grilled King Prawns cosmopolitan mix of expats, business travelers and groups of young, hip locals. Club music plays in the background, however, it wasn’t too loud where conversation was impossible.
We were here to try their new combo— four plates of food and four beers for VND488,000++, a great value and an excellent way to start or finish a night out. We sipped our signature mojitos as the first plate arrives, chicken wings and calamari. Though we was warned the chicken wings could be spicy, they were actually quite tame, yet large and with an ample coating of batter, the meat tender and juicy. The calamari was savory as well.
The next plate placed on our table was triangles of chicken quesadillas. This, to our delight, had all of the necessary sides, including a scoop of sour cream, one of guacamole, and one of Pico de Gallo. Filled with shredded chicken and bell peppers, with a light layer of cheese, the quesadilla was filling and flavorful, with the guacamole and sour cream giving it a rich, creamy texture.
Beef, Lamb and Chicken Skewers – Grilled King Prawns
We made it about halfway through the quesadilla before plate number 3 arrived with three types of skewers— two with lamb, two with fish and two with beef—with chunks of bell pepper buffering each piece of meat. The large squares of white fish were tender and mild, while the lamb had a succulent Greek-style seasoning to it. With our belly reaching capacity plate four and final arrived, grilled king prawns with mango salsa. The tangy, sweet salsa with the moist, tender prawns was an excellent dish to finish with, as it was a lighter, more complementary plate after some of the heartier plates before it.
Muddle – Ginger Mash
With four beers and our four plates of food for VND488,000++, it’s a terrific deal, especially the added value of the view. It’s perfect for a night out with a few friends. They also have a full menu, which includes European charcuteries and tapas. Beyond the signature mojito, OnTop Bar boasts some interesting signature cocktails like Muddle, which includes Jim Beam, tamarind cordial, Benedictine liqueur (DOM), kumquat and lime leaf; or Ginger Mash, which has gin, pineapple juice, St Germain (elderflower liqueur) and lime juice. So, whether you’re looking to hang out with colleagues after a long workday or looking to kickstart the weekend chilling with friends, start by looking up.