Celebrated a birthday here. We booked a table for 4 through our hotel in Hanoi (Nova Luxury Hotel) after searching on TA for the perfect place to splurge during our Northern Vietnam holiday.
We have been traveling on a shoestring budget for 4 days and I really wanted to make sure we have a fabulous dinner to remember. No disappointments allowed.
After walking around the Hanoi Opera house district, we arrived early at Jackson’s conveniently across an upscale commercial centre in the French Quarter. Our server, Trinh, checked the reservation list but did not see our reservation. Nevertheless, we were accommodated and immediately seated at a table for 4 on the ground floor. Out of earshot, I mentioned to Trinh that we were celebrating my husband’s birthday and we never had the chance to finalise A plan until it was time for dessert.
Jackson’s has a seriously mouthwatering menu for meat lovers. All our favourites in a steakhouse - from the meat to the sides - were available so it was pretty hard to pick the perfect meal. Desserts were on a different menu card.
As we were a family with younger children, I was reluctant to other mains fit for an adult. A quick query to Trinh for a kid’s menu provided us with an A3 size colouring page with at least 3 choices for kids: spaghetti bolognese, fish and chips, chicken nuggets. Having eaten Vietnamese delicacies generously the past few days, we did not mind going international again. My youngest had the fish and chips which were more like fish fingers (hopefully faite-a-la-maison!) She happily ate her meal with no leftovers.
As for the rest of our party, we went for the NZ ribeyes and sirloin steaks. All medium rare. For the grown-ups, we added pan-seared foie gras and our choice of sauce: béarnaise and green peppercorn for my husband and myself respectively. The steaks came with half a garlic head, sautéed mushrooms, courgette and potatoes. For our eldest, we asked to skip the accompanying vegetables and to just replace it with french fries. Our server obliged. Nice, sweet and simple. No wrestling required with the menu!
For drinks, lemonade and the banana-chocolate milkshake (not on the menu) were the kids choices. Again, no problem ordering these :0).
Once orders were made, a bread basket was offered with nice warm rolls, sliced garlic bread and a whole wheat option. Beurre salé, herbes butter and à tomato-based tapenade accompanied the bread. Thé tapenade was not very exciting - a bit bland and mushy. There was no sharp point on the flavour that made us want to get more. I would recommend the Jackson’s Steakhouse to change this with something else.
When our steaks and sides arrived, everything was perfect. More freshly ground pepper was offered and choices of mustard were also provided: English, horseradish, Dijon ... I forgot the last variety. We truly enjoyed our steaks and the sauces. All was done perfectly well.
For dessert, my eldest chose the chocolate souffle while grownups opted to share a tiramisu. We asked for a long black decaf and Vietnamese green tea for our nightcap. Unbeknownst to us, Trinh had already arranged a slice of raspberry cheesecake with a lit birthday candle for my husband’s birthday treat! Such a great finish for a memorable visit to Hanoi.
I am very grateful to Jackson’s Steakhouse staff for the exceptional service. We are just travelers in a new city. We did not have any connections in Hanoi and just relied on TA’s recommendations. We didn’t even know that Jackson’s Steakhouse was the No. 1 Fine Dining spot in Hanoi for 2017. I agree. Very well deserved!
Last but not the least, Trinh was a great server and we were so thankful for her help in making our dinner out a great night. Thank you for engaging us in conversation, making sure our meal went smoothly and you were ahead of our needs each time.
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