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« Pho Cuong(Hanoi) and Halong Bay | Main | Pupuseria y Taqueria Cabañas 1: Yuma »

Tuesday, 22 April 2008



What a great post. BTW, did they specially open up Ranch 99 to allow you to take photos? :) I've never seen the produce/seafood aisles so empty! Glad I haven't caught sight of brains there either!


Hi Sharon - LOL! You can read this post if you're curious about when I shop at 99 Ranch Market:

The only thing is that sometimes the fresh produce is not yet out. I usually will only shop at 99 Ranch Market early in the morning, at about 3pm, or later on a weekend night.


Love the pics of Vietnam. I'm planning a trip around South East Asia in Feb. It's far off, but I was wondering where did you plan this trip? How did you book the tour guides and such?


Hi, are the mini crabs there in the market the same thing one occasionally finds fried in sushi bars called sawagani? My father spent 3 years in VN during the war. He always told me that most people really eat BROWN rice. (but ,I thought that might just be due to the circumstances). Is it true, most Vietnamese eat unpolished rice? He also told me the Vietnamese eat with thier right hand, the left hand considered "unclean". (this was problematic for me growing up as I am left handed). Thank you for the great blog.


Ranch 99 has nothing on street market and the haggling! ;-) Last picture of the missus remind me of my mom, her should developed a really thick muscles/callus from carrying stuff.


what a great post! thanks for sharing :)


I'm surprised they you guys got away with pictures inside the market too! My dad always yells at me when I take pictures inside his market!

The exotic goodies look DELICIOUS though! Mmmmmmm ;)


Kirk vs Cathy in a Portuguese sausage eating contest...who wins?

Kobayashi wins lol


I was recently in Chiang Mai and I totally get that whole bargaining fatigue. Once I went to a supermarket there and was so happy that all prices were labelled!


Great post! I go to 99 Ranch fairly early but never so early there's only 1 other person in the produce section. Now that's the only way to shop at 99!

Is that cuttlefish in that green bucket? Love cuttlefish.

Captain Jack

Love the photo of the bowl o' brains. Looks like they are not to big on refrigeration at Hang Be. I'll bet the meat and seafood are "alive with pleasure" after a few hours in the humid heat.

Captain Jack

I did notice after looking at the pictures again that they make a bit of an effort by putting some of the seafood on ice. Not so much with the meat.


Love the market comparison! One thing that the 99 Ranch Market has that the market in Vietnam doesn't have - a badly configured parking lot!

Come to think of it, that must hold true for just about every Asian market in Southern California. Either the parking spaces are are too small, or the lot is in need of re-striping.

Mr. Saturn

Kirk you really didn't have to post the pig brains XD

Oh my that sliced dragonfruit looks so good, so creamy and juicy and mellowy sweet at the same time.

Too bad you can't them here!


Thanks for the Rice Paddy Crabs. I can eat a whole basket of them lol


Great shots! I got haggling fatigue in Vietnam too. After a while, I figured it's often worth the $1 to not haggle, plus it means a lot more to the person I'm haggling with. But my mom kept yelling at me, accusing me of driving the prices up!

White On Rice Couple

The Hanoi market pictures are amazing!! We're headed to Hanoi this summer (hopefully) and will be visiting this market for sure!! Thanks for the great picture trip!


Hi Nikki - I hope you got my email.

Hi Chris - We encountered unpolished rice on all of our stops. Don't know about the left hand thing, it may be something of the past, or as a tourist it didn't matter, I'm left handed. In Cambodia, there is a specific way of eating, I'll cover that in a later post. If I recall Japanese River Crabs are a bit over 2-3 inches in length, and are different from Somanniathelphusa.

Hi Billy - Man, that is tough's really not easy carrying that stuff around.

Hi Kat - I'm glad you enjoyed.

Hi Judy - We're very unobstrusive....

Hi Eric - Everybody wins????

Hi Su-Lin - It can get tiring if you're not used to it!

Hi Carol - Yep, live cuttlefish....I thought they were beautiful.

Hi CJ - You want to hear something interesting.....the place didn't smell, at all! We noticed this at several markets, no bad smell. And it is fresh....most of it is gone in a few hours.

Hi Sandy - I agree about parking configuration...but in Hanoi, everybody parks their motorbikes on the sidewalk! So you end up walking on the street dodging traffic. So, I guess I've learned to appreciate a lousy parking config, to a free for all......

Hi Mr Saturn - You can get Dragon Fruit here....but they don't taste the same, not as sweet.....the Missus ate this stuff by the kilo.

Hi YY - We've got some better photos of the rice paddy crabs while in Sapa.

Hi Tracey - Gotta love Mom.......

Hi WORC - This is actually the smaller of the 2 markets in the Old Quarter. I'm sure you'll enjoy is quite a lively City.


I love looking at photos of street markets! The dragon fruit looks gorgeous - like an alien egg. I hardly see it over here, but I did get some at that tiny market next to A Chau.


Wow! Brains, crabs, cuttlefish, and ... were those opium pipes in that one rack? 8*D Definitely a whole kettle of (live) fish from 99 Ranch! And I agree, I find the quality of 99 Ranch's fresh fruit a little disappointing compared to their fresh vegetable offerings.

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