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« Hanoi: Banh Gio - It's what's for breakfast, and a first taste of Northern Pho Bo | Main | Hanoi: 9 Courses of snake at Le Mat (snake village) Part 2 and Bat Trang »

Tuesday, 15 April 2008



Hehehe, last picture - where's the king cobra or porcupine on the plate? ;-) Didn't know coffee is a little different in the US.


Great. On this "show" that I watched about food in Hanoi, there was some mention of a special kind of coffee that is eaten by a civet, and the undigested beans are gathered from the...feces and made into a drink. I think that may have been more shock value than real, everyday drink? As far as salt is concerned, my Vietnamese girlfreind tells me that there was this great chef long ago in VN who developed an entire banquet meal based on salt.It is reserved for royaly, and only a few chefs are trained in these elusive recipes. If anyone else has heard of it, it would be you. Maybe its just one of those urban legends?


That was cool! (And yes, my inner geek really dug the Jacquard loom too.)


gosh what a great adventure!! can't wait for part 2!


My skin still crawling.


Wow what an adventure! So what part of the snake is fermented for the wine? Is it the venom? I must say you were pretty brave! All this for the first full day in vietnam too!


Hi Billy - I think there is a difference in the coffee....That last picture is just a "tease" for the next post! ;o)

Hi Chris - There is civet coffee all over SE Asia....I understand that it is the most expensive coffee in the world. If I recall, only 500 kilos or so makes it to market each year. Don't know about the salt banquet though....

Hi Mizducky - You could walk right up to the loom and watch it in action.....kind of mesmerizing.

Hi Kat - I hope you enjoy the second part.

Hi RONW - Let's see how you like part 2.....

Hi Rachel - There are whole snakes, and other herbs soaking in the bottom of the for how it's made; I'm not quite sure.


Le Mat Village has gone from a quiet vilagge to a very commercialized enterprise in a few year. I had coffe at the same shop when I was in Hanoi last. The street you are looking out to from the shop is Hang Be. There is a very nice Boutique Hotel on that street named Hoa Binh Palace Hotel with a restaurant on the 8th the floor with a great view. It used to be very cheap but they has priced themself out of my range. Looking for ward to your second post. I ran into Chubby Panda at lunch on Monday.


Hey Beach - Hang Be is one busy street! We spent a good deal of time at Hang Be Market.... I hope CP is doing well.

ed (from Yuma)


I've had snake wine/liquor from Okinawa (if memory serves). I think I prefer my snakes dead to alive.


I've had Okinawan snake wine as well - it was really good!


Too bad I can't hold my liquor otherwise I would love to sample the exotic drinks.


I would have liked to try the snake wine. According to my Mom, I had snake soup as a 3 yr old to help with some heat rash. Guess it cleared it right up. I might have been born in the year of the Snake but not sure if I ever want to get that close to a King Cobra.


This is great stuff! Thrills and chills and good dramatic build up. Are those figs in the last picture? I'm looking forward to seeing the meal!


ahhh!! snakes! on the plain!
sorry K. bad excuse for a joke.


Hmmm ... I'd be kind of worried if my driver was getting a buzz from snake rice wine!

I get the heebie-jeebies at the zoo's snake enclosure, so I think I'll stay away from Le Mat if I ever get to Hanoi.


You are right, I did some research. You can buy civet coffee on the internet for starting at about $40 for 2oz bag. There is another Vietnamese company that makes a coffee that is supposed to emulate the flavor by treating the beans with enzymes and fermenting them like what happens inside of the civet, I might try that out. I have not seen snake wine in USA- is it illegal? Do thet have it someplace on Bolsa ave maybe?


Hi Ed & Ed - Sounds great....I've only had Awamori, and another type of Shochu from Okinawa that tasted like pure alcohol.

Hi Billy - The snake wine from the farm was the best thing we drank the entire trip...tough the Ruou in Bac Ha was pretty good.

Hi Carol - Snake soup as a remedy for heat rash.....I hadn't heard that one before!

Hi FH - Those are pickled figs....the Missus loved 'em.

Hi Penny - Too funny! I wish I had thought of that one.....mmmmm corn!

Hi Sandy - It was our guide who drank....our driver was off somewhere taking a nap in the shade.

Hi Chris - I don't know about all the legalities and stuff....I know they differ from state to state. But here's a link:

Don't know how good this stuff is though.....


Now I know what that fig looking vege is, my mom use to make it but stop making it due to the fact that it heats up the body some how - asian thing obviously.

This is the raw version with mam ruoc - Yummy?


I got a bottle of snake wine from this website, do they also sell it in China?

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