Nam Beo Seafood, Danang, Vietnam

Seafood is a must-eat in Da Nang. While the most visible of seafood restaurants are along My Khe Beach, where the prime real estate is, we also noted that these restaurants were mostly populated with tourists. I suppose it's like seafood restaurants in Clarke Quay, which no self-respecting local patronizes, and also regularly attract CASE complaints for overcharging tourists. I can only expect that the entire stretch of sea-front seafood joints flanking the main beach would be overpriced, and quite unlikely to be authentically delicious.

According to the locals, walk a little further inland, away from the main beaches, to the street of Vo Van Kiet, which is lined with seafood options crowded with locals. We popped into one, just because the origins of its name tickled us so much. Apparently, said seafood joint was named after its owner, affectionately call "Fat Nam" by the locals. In fact, its logo of a rotund guy is actually a caricature of him!

We thought the seafood adequate, commendable actually, but still prefer the Singapore style of cooking seafood. I'd still fall back on our chilli crabs, Teochew steamed fish, sambal prawns, and crisp fried baby squid. 

Highly recommended was a starter of Fig Salad punctuated with fresh mint, peanuts, and shallow slivers, and spiked with fish sauce and chilli. Clean and lively notes that whetted the appetite for more. 

We loved the Grilled Baby Squid smoky and juicy, simply seasoned with sesame, chilli, and spring onions. Our only gripe, the squid needed to be cleaned better, we had to pick out cuttlebone from the tail tube multiple times.

The Tamarind Prawns was a little bit sweet, a little bit piquant, and a lot yummy. We'd have preferred bigger prawns though, these were too slight to make peeling the shells off a worthwhile endeavour...it took forever to peel them all off.

A signature, the Poached Fish, in a tamarind-tomato broth laced with bamboo shoots and spring onions, was delicate and scrumptious. The fish, a cross between the smooth creaminess of a pomfret, and the thick meatiness of a seabass, was clear in flavour, so it soaked up the flavours of the broth beautifully.

Served as a complimentary starter like bread, the black sesame-d Grilled Rice Paper was like really plain Japanese rice crackers, crunchy and needed the flavours of the other dishes to pop.

The shop front for reference. Best make reservations if wanting to dine on a weekend. We were there pretty late, and the restaurant was packed to the rafters the whole time we were there.

Nam Béo - Quán Nhậu Hải Sản
Lô 18 - 20 Võ Văn Kiệt, Quận Sơn Trà, Đà Nẵng
Tel: 0905 585 615
Open daily from 7am to 10.30pm

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