return icon

Love for Vietnamese cuisine

Chef of Hanoi’s Fortuna Hotel, Kenji Tam, who has been recently awarded first prize at ‘The Best Taste’ contest, presented a set of three dishes, inspired by the atmosphere of Tet in Vietnam.

Chef of Hanoi’s Fortuna Hotel, Kenji Tam, who has been recently awarded first prize at ‘The Best Taste’ contest, presented a set of three dishes, inspired by the atmosphere of Tet in Vietnam.


It can be said that his love for Vietnam cuisine helped him to bring a new understanding and set of skills to his cooking, Nhan Dan newspaper reported.

Working and living in Vietnam over the past six years, for Kenji Tam the time spent in Vietnam has been a journey of discovering the nature, culture and people of the country.

Kenji Tam’s parents are cooks in Malaysia; therefore his love for cooking was instilled in him from an early age. He learnt about cooking and forged his impressive culinary skills living in Japan over seven years. At the age of 24, he became the Head Chef of Asian cuisine in Shinjuku, Japan.

After arriving in Vietnam, the sophistication of Vietnamese cuisine along with its fresh ingredients and unique taste attracted Kenji Tam. Based on his knowledge of Japanese cuisine and his love for Vietnamese cuisine, he created a combination of the two.

It seems it was this combination that helped the chef to win first prize in the ‘The Best Taste’ contest held in January 2015. The contest brought together chefs from 12 top hotels and restaurants in Vietnam.

Using ingredients common in Vietnamese cuisine, Kenji Tam’s three dishes at the contest featured distinct tastes of Vietnam. Especially, his dessert, inspired by images of peach blossom and apricot blossom, along with a red envelope of lucky money, which was considered as a gift from the chef on the occasion of the New Year.

Sharing the first dish he fell in love with when first arriving in Vietnam, Kenji Tam said Ca kho to (Vietnamese fish braised in a clay pot) is “the best food in the world”. The Vietnamese woman who cooked the dish for him now just so happens to be his wife.

He said that the Ca kho to was reminiscent of California Maki, which is a Japanese dish with influences from California. He cherishes the idea of making Japanese food with Vietnamese influences.

Vietnamese street is what first attracted the chef to Vietnamese food, bringing with it interesting experiences that are missed when dining in large restaurants, according to Kenji Tam.

After nearly six years living in Vietnam, Kenji Tam’s memories of the country are not limited only to Vietnamese ingredients, dishes and kitchens where he worked, but also of his Vietnamese colleagues, employees and the local people. He shared that the friendliness of his Vietnamese colleagues made a strong impression on him, for this reason, he decided to stay in Vietnam.

Kenji has welcomed the Lunar New Year in Vietnam four times, each year bringing many different memories, but all Tet holidays in Vietnam offer him the feeling that he is living in his fatherland.

On this year’s Tet holiday, Kenji Tam will visit Nam Dinh, Hung Yen and Thai Nguyen provinces with his employees. He is eager to participate in traditional activities preparing for the Lunar New Year in Vietnam such as making Chung cake or cooking traditional Vietnamese dishes served at Tet. The more he grows to love Vietnam, the more he wants to learn and understand about Vietnamese cuisine and culture.



Vietnam's legal system protects authors' copyrights: Deputy Minister

Copyright issues and protecting intellectual property was the main topic of the "Roundtable and Workshop on Online Enforcement of Intellectual Property Rights" on Monday.

Ministry examines ways to convince public sector workers not to quit

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MOHA) suggested improvements must be made in the working environment regarding professionalism, modernity, competition, and opportunities for professional development.

A spicy treat from Hai Phong cuisine

Among all versions of the iconic Vietnamese sandwich, the spicy banh mi of Hai Phong might be the smallest, but don't let that fool you into thinking it's any less than its larger siblings.

Luxury apartments selling well in Vietnam

Wealthy Vietnamese are ready to spend millions of dollars to buy super-luxury properties.

How will the US FED's interest rate hike affect the Vietnamese dong?

The Vietnamese dong may lose 4 percent of its value against the USD in 2022, while the deposit interest rate is predicted to lose 30-50 points after the US FED’s move and SBV’s first policy responses.

Opportunity for local firms to enter $200bil games market

Now is the time for Vietnam’s game industry to enter the global game market, worth $200 billion.

Japanese professor demands apology from Em Và Trịnh producer

Japanese professor Michiko Yoshii, one of Vietnamese celebrated songwriter Trinh Cong Son’s muses, has submitted a request to Vietnamese Cinema Department to ask for the official apology from the producer of the film Em Và Trịnh (You and Trịnh).

FDI inflows continue on downward trajectory

The sharp decline of newly-registered foreign direct investment pulled down the total in the first nine months of the year despite the high disbursement rate.

Vietnam’s steel exports to China nosedive

China is no longer a major export market for Vietnamese-made steel, as revenue from steel shipments to the northern neighbor has plummeted, the General Department of Vietnam Customs reported.

Determining solar, wind power prices still problematic

The electricity prices of many wind and solar power projects have yet to be determined following the expiration of the FIT (feed in tariff) policy, worrying investors.

As pristine as Ru Cha mangrove forest

Ru Cha is the name of a unique primeval mangrove forest in Thuan Hoa Village, Huong Phong Commune, Hue City.

Lack of orders plaguing export enterprises

During the fourth quarter of every year most of the export companies in Vietnam find the need to step up pace in order to meet the increased demand in orders from major import markets such as the US and the European Union.

PM chairs urgent meeting in response to super typhoon Noru

Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh chaired an urgent meeting on September 27 to hasten response to the approaching super typhoon Noru.

Yen Bai launches tours to conquer two of highest mountains in Vietnam

Tours to conquer Ta Xua and Ta Chi Nhu, two of the 15 highest mounts in Vietnam, were launched in Tram Tau district of northwestern Yen Bai province on September 25.

Typhoon Noru to affect Vietnam’s mainland on late September 27

Typhoon Noru is gaining strength while moving westward at 20-25km per hour, and is expected to make landfall in central Vietnam in the afternoon or evening September 27.