L’Adresse is the Address to be

L’Adresse Bistro highlights Arab cuisine and culture in a magnifcent setting

I rarely take the motorbike out of my daily patterns of District 7 anymore. If I go into town its by car to avoid the stress and pollution, so as I snaked along the elevated motorbike only lane, cresting on Phu My Bridge, I found the ride contrastingly soothing to the routine commute.

With almost no traffic on this Sunday night we drove along Vo Chi Cong, appreciating the varying angles of the city until heading left on Dong Van Cong. A handful of kilometers later, on the left, there’s a new luxury residential high-rise called Vista Verde. It’s here of all places where one of Saigon’s newest and most dynamic gastronomic experiences can be found—L’Adresse Bistro Saigon by Shad Adnan (2 Phan Van Dang, D2; www.facebook.com/ladressebistrosgn).

Shad

The bistro’s eclectic décor blends Middle Eastern style with accents of exposed bricks and comfy palette sofas. Along one wall are three traditional Bedouin areas presented in three-sided tents with a fabric canopy along with pillows and cushions; perfect for a group to lounge and casually converse.

As we sat the owner and operator, Shad Adnan, came over to greet us. When I commented on the bistro he mentioned how the furniture is handmade and upholstered with traditional Middle Eastern fabric patterns, which he contracted to have built. “Whatever you see was creatively devised by three designers. It looks simple and spacious and nice, but it has taken lots of effort to make customers feel relaxed and to feel like they are in an Arab setting. We wanted to do something that reflects our traditions and culture by creating a bistro that reveals this.”

Beyond the appearance there’s free Wi-Fi, but going a step further he tore up the floor to lay electrical wiring throughout the bistro to be sure that every table has an outlet underneath to encourage people to come and stay for a while. “I want a place where people can come together, because that’s my identity. What I want is a place where people can communicate and relax.”

Fatoush

So relax we did. I ordered a Far East IPA (VND115,000) and perused the menu of Middle Eastern/Mediterranean/Lebanese dishes: hummus (VND125,000), tabbouleh (VND135,000) and baba ghanouj (VND125,000). Each comes served with homemade khubz bread, which is a flatbread staple in the Arabian diet, similar to a pita or naan. They also have fattoush (VND130,000), a Levantine salad with mixed greens, fresh veggies, pieces of fried khubz bread and topped with a sumac Mediterranean dressing. There’s a hummus and lamb dish (VND175,000), foul mudammas (VND125,000), which is an Arabian bean stew that dates back to ancient Egypt, and more. The signature dish, however, is the Levantine Mixed Grill (VND300,000),
consisting of skewers of grilled meats, such as lamb, beef or chicken, as well as skewers of grilled fresh vegetables. The meats are imported along with the herbs and vegetables that can’t be grown locally.

Hummus with khubz bread

We had the hummus with khubz bread. The bread was a little crispier than a pita and more flavorful. The hummus was the best we’ve tasted. We also had makanik (VND195,000), Lebanese sausages made of halal beef and lamb. The sausage is a dry sausage with traditional Arab seasoning and a hint of molasses that’s complemented by the juices and caramelized onion it’s served in.

Makanik

While finishing up, Shad returned to see how we were getting on. I mentioned that on my next trip I’d like to see how the tabbouleh holds up. He then explained how he partnered with a business associate to bring seeds from Lebanon to Dalat where these Lebanese crops are now grown. “Now we are getting real, authentic cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, lettuce, and most importantly, the parsley. The parsley makes the tabbouleh. Vietnamese parsley is completely different. It doesn’t have that zesty, citrus taste that we are looking for.”

If you’re intrigued by Middle Eastern cuisine Shad and L’Adresse Bistro have you covered. For a more Vietnamese-friendly palate, there’s the Loco Moco (VND180,000), steak and eggs on a bed of rice in a Hawaiian style, which is quite popular with the local clientele. “The Vietnamese people like it because it kind of reflects their cuisine with meat, egg and rice,” explained Shad. They also do a time-honored paella (VND250,000) and even have a burger, though as Shad added, it’s with a fusion twist. “The patty, which is 180 grams, has a combination of Lebanese spices, while the bun is a black bun, which is typically Japanese, so it’s a charcoal bamboo bun.”

Charcoal bamboo bun burger

L’Adresse Bistro Saigon also has breakfast, scrumptious desserts, including a traditional Knafe (VND125,000), and a long list of drinks, including Italian coffees, local craft beers, imported wines and a range of cocktails.

In addition, Sophie, Shad’s wife and business partner, and the bistro’s chef will create plat du jour Vietnamese platters to further entice locals as well as expats.

Images by Vy Lam and Shad Adnan

Share this story, choose your platform!

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on pinterest
Share on tumblr
Share on google
Share on linkedin
Share on reddit
Share on vk
Share on email
About the author:

Leave a Comment

Buy caviar online at affordable fixed rates from Caspian Monarque.

Caspian Monarque is the best online store where we can buy caviar at affordable fixed rates. Caviar is fish eggs that are found in the Caspian Sea. Here we find fishes like salmon, steelhead, trout, lumpfish, and whitefish. They vary in shapes, sizes, colors, and physical features. However, their eggs are small and almost similar. They differ

Read More »

Drink, Lounge, Be Merry

By Marco Bouwer There’s a classy new meetup venue in town, a 1920’s lounge bar with plush leather couches, swingy jazz tunes played from a gramophone player, and a wonderfully reserved atmosphere. Tucked in the welcoming bottom floor of the popular House of Barbaard, Saigon’s exclusive barbershop for gentlemen, is the Ministry of Men lounge

Read More »

Delightful Coffee Shops in D7

Text by Marco Bouwer Ho Chi Minh City does not take a step back for any city when it comes to coffee culture. It is home to thousands of independent coffee shops, which is a treat if you’re used to a city overran by the big international coffee brands. There’s adventure in discovering unique little

Read More »

Behind the Label

Is French wine about to hit bottom? France has the worldwide reputation for producing the best, and usually, the most expensive wines in the world. The five first growths of Bordeaux, also known as the Grand Crus, even though they are mass produced in the hundreds of thousands of bottles, easily reach astronomic prices around

Read More »

From a Virtual Restaurant to your Dining Table

No longer must restaurateurs rent space for a dining room to serve diners, Oi speaks to Rukmini Makkar about her new business What inspired you to start FEURO, and what does ” FEURO ” mean? Saigon is a vibrant melting pot of cultures, and has a wide array of delicious cuisines to offer, the founders

Read More »

Eat More Vegetables

Exploring Vietnam’s best vegetarian ingredients For many, Vietnam is a paradise for vegetarians of all kinds. Restaurants roll out a vegetarian menu for the first and 15th of every month for those looking for a bit of soul purification. Home cooks revel in a huge assortment of fruits and vegetables, changing with the season. And

Read More »