After having multiple meals of Vietnamese food, including Hue’s signature dish Bun Bo Hue, we decided to have some Italian food as a change. Furthermore, our train was only scheduled to leave at 1945 that evening and we had about 1.5 hours to kill. Risotto Restaurant was located at a side street in Hue, away from the touristy restaurants that faced the main road. Its Tripadvisor and Google reviews are pretty good too. Here’s a review of Italian food at Risotto Restaurant in Hue – hope you find it useful.
If it wasn’t for the restaurant’s name and menu, I would have thought I was visiting a Chinese restaurant. There were little lanterns that lighted up the dining area. The chairs were traditional Asian dining chairs. The restaurant was mostly quiet. People started streaming in at about 6pm. When we left about 7pm, there were about three groups of diners in the restaurant. They were mostly tourists, apart from a local couple seated next to us.
The restaurant menu was pretty extensive. There was everything from pastas, to pizzas and risotto. The prices were very reasonable too. For instance, it cost about 85,000 dong / SGD4.90/ USD3.75 for a plate of risotto (the portion was huge) and pasta, and about 110,000 dong /SGD6.35/ USD 4.85 for a medium-sized pizza.
The risotto was pretty good. I had not expected the risotto to be so rich, but there were good flavours. In terms of presentation, I thought it was a nice touch for them to include a stalk of basil in the risotto ‘cake’. I used to like cooking risotto and I thought the consistency and texture of this dish was pretty good. The only thing that was lacking was the flavours used in white wine. But then again for the price, it is understandable why they didn’t use imported white wine while cooking.
Perhaps it was a change of tastes, but after having about five mouthfuls of the risotto, it started to get quite gelat (rich and cloying). I requested for some chilli flakes and it was helpful that they had some available. The chilli helped cut through the cream and cheese, and made the dish much easier to finish.
Friend S ordered a Puttanesca (pasta with anchovy, chilli, capers, garlic, onion, black olives). It was the same price as the risotto – 85,000 dong / SGD4.90/ USD3.75. I had some to try and really wished I had ordered that instead. The tomato sauce was warm and had a comforting tomato flavour. The restaurant didn’t scrimp on the ingredients too. Once again, I liked the generous helping of basil on top of the dish.
Complimentary bruschetta and passionfruit
The mains were served with complimentary bruschetta at the start. It was good in a home-made way. I liked how the baguette held up to the tomato sauce and didn’t become soggy. The passionfruit was served as a dessert of sorts.
There were several wines on the menu which were sold out. We eventually ordered an Australian wine – the Yalumba Shiraz Viognier which was good for pairing with food. I recalled the flavour to be that of stone fruits (blackcurrent maybe?). The wine was strong on tannins and it was quite punchy too. A great way to kill time. The wine was about SGD50 if I recalled correctly.
The service – A case of Over-Tipping
Now Friend S is used to the tipping practices in the US, and offered the restaurant a 15% tip. Our total bill had come up to about 1,038,000 dong / SGD60 / USD46. The additional tip amounted to 155,000 dong / SGD 6.64 /USD 5.
But upon receiving the tip, the staff discussed among themselves for a few minutes, and came back to Friend S to tell him that he had tipped too much. So we reduced the tip to that of 10%. I suppose in the minds of the staff, it was quite unfathomable to receive a tip more than that of the price of two dishes.
The Travelling Squid’s Take
I thought the service staff were helpful and quite sincere. They were also super honest, because who rejects tips! The food was really good value for money. For the price, the portions were generous and they used good ingredients. It almost seem that the chef had lots of potential, but was limited by the ingredients he had access to. If you’re thinking about killing time, having a bottle of wine is a great way to do so too. The wines were not too pricey – similar to what we have in Singapore.
Review of Italian food at Risotto Restaurant in Hue
- Address: 14 Nguyen Cong Tru
- Phone: +84 234 3949 684
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Website: http://www.risottorestauranthue.com
- Opening hours: 10am – 10pm daily