Looking for some seafood? Along Tuy Hoa beach, starting from Nguyen Hue Street, for more than a kilometre to the north, there are over 40 beachside seafood places to choose from. Sounds great, but, they're all basically the same -— small, family-run outfits with identical menus of fish, shrimp, crab, etc. If you're having trouble deciding, try Sao Mai Seafood, about halfway down the row. In the summer, these place are much more popular in the evenings when things cool down. If you're in the area before dusk, where the road ends further to the north, there are several cafes nestled in the casuarinas trees along the shore -— a good place for a cool drink on a hot day.
Within walking distance of Highway 1A, standard Vietnamese fish and meat dishes can be found at Lam Tien on the corner of Nguyen Trai and Nguyen Hue, and further east, Ba Bi offers expensive seafood dishes in a sit-down atmosphere on two floors: hum (lobster) for 350,000 VND/kg, cua (crab) 140,000, and ca mu (local fish) at 180,000 per fish.
As you enter town, you'll probably notice Pho Nuong (Grilling Town) to the west of Highway 1A -— it's lit up with neon lights at night and it's hard to miss. It provides a pleasant atmosphere for group dinning along the river, and very prompt, stand-at-your-table-the-whole-time service. As the name implies, grilled meats are the specialty, with entrees from 50- to 120,000 VND. The English-language menu is pretty hysterical, offering 'ligard', 'liced patato crispy', and 'interfering oil'. An exotic variety of meats are available: braised rabbit, ostrich wings, simmered tortoise with green banana, and -- we kid you not -- grilled unicorn-leather jacket. We assume that's a mistranslation—the Vietnamese side lists it as some sort of fish.
Goat-meat, hot-pot restaurants are a stable in the region—you'll find a collection of them on Tran Quy Cap street, including Cay Me (Tamarind Tree) Restaurant, which is coincidentally located beneath a big tamarind tree. Along Le Duan Street just south of Nguyen Hue is Lau Vit (Duck Hotpot) which specialises in duck. The duck lau runs from 25- to 35,000 VND, and a whole, roasted duck is 70,000. There are also cheap side of eel, snail and frog—the usual stuff. It's meant to be consumed with some kind of ruou, Vietnamese rice wine.
Ba Bi Restaurant: 319 Nguyen Hue St, Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 820 202, F: (057) 827 368
Cay Me Restaurant: 20 Tran Quy Cap St, Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 820 922. Hours: 07:00 to 22:00
Lam Tien Restaurant: 191 Nguyen Hue, Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 822 713
Lau Vit Restaurant: 275 Le Duan St, Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 820 605
Pho Nuong (Grilling Town): Highway 25 (just off 1A), Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 899 466. Open: 08:00 to 22:00
Sao Mai Seafood: Doc Lap St, Tuy Hoa. T: (057) 840 082. Open: Early 'til late.