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“Great kitchen let down by negligent service”

Secret House - Restaurant & Cafe
Ranked #51 of 4,148 Restaurants in Ho Chi Minh City
Price range: US$5 - US$13
Description: Secret House - Vietnamese Restaurant & Cafe, a sister branch of Secret Garden Saigon. The restaurant brings you feeling of the atmosphere of Vietnamese countryside by its home-cooked foods & decoration. It's built by mixture of mud & rice roots, wooden pillars, old bricks ceiling & herb garden in the middle of the house. Come & experience truly Vietnamese house at Secret House
Restaurant details
Description: Secret House - Vietnamese Restaurant & Cafe, a sister branch of Secret Garden Saigon. The restaurant brings you feeling of the atmosphere of Vietnamese countryside by its home-cooked foods & decoration. It's built by mixture of mud & rice roots, wooden pillars, old bricks ceiling & herb garden in the middle of the house. Come & experience truly Vietnamese house at Secret House
Reviewed 1 April 2018 via mobile

Two visits, two very different experiences. Had we been just the first time, I would have been praising the generous portions, good prices and delicious, freshly-cooked food, each dish different from the others. All of which was true.

However, on our second visit, the food simply didn't appear. Other tables, who had arrived later than us, were served. None of the waiters noticed that we had no food. None of them noticed that they were delivering to the other tables in our area, but not us. Nobody came to ask if we needed anything. Our initial drinks had long since been finished. We asked one waiter where our food was, and he just grunted and disappeared. After a full 45 minutes from first ordering, we managed to get another waiter to see what had happened. 10 minutes later he came back and confessed that they had lost the order, and would we please reorder.

We did and, to be fair, the food then arrived within the 5 minutes promised, but that was an hour after we had first ordered.

The first visit would have scored 5 and the second 1, so it has to be a 3. What a shame.

Thank RTheRower
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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98 - 102 of 270 reviews

Reviewed 1 April 2018 via mobile

We went to secret house with a couple of friends on their first trip to Asia. It really catered to everyone at the table. We had the pork belly entree with rice noodles, rice paper rolls and spring rolls - spring rolls where the highlight, yes they are just spring rolls but these were very flavourful. Mains were braised pork in pepper, braised chicken in ginger and fried rice with lotus and pork. All very tasty, service was good - wait staff aren’t fluent in English but made no difference. The atmosphere added to the enjoyment of dining here - I encourage you to give it a go next time you are in district 1

Thank danigirl86
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 31 March 2018 via mobile

Stopped in for lunch today after walking by & reading many reviews. Unfortunately I left feeling that there is more hype than substance & not much soul in what could be a very lovely restaurant. It was lunch, so perhaps the ‘vibe’ is different during the day but it had the feeling that something was missing..like a warm & comfortable invitation through the doors.
Ok let’s start. It was myself and 2 teenagers. We decided to treat ourselves & ordered up - salted bacon, garlic chicken, lemongrass chicken skewer (which were lovely), lotus seed fried rice & the fried rice cake with minced pork, topped with fried shrimp & shallots, and a small plain rice. All 3 of us chose a non alcoholic drink - which went down well (apart from my son not getting what he’d asked for & he just kept the strawberry smoothie as it was nice)..one thing I did notice was that water was not offered (opposed to every where else we have been in Vietnam) or staff come to check if we needed any.
I think we ordered way too much, which was obvious when plates were served & wouldn’t fit on the table. It didn’t seem like the staff thought about this situation & it was myself who had to manoeuvre the platters & plates & take them up to the counter/bar once I moved food around to share space. It would have made more sense to bring out a few to start.. and then the rest. The dishes were presented nicely, the food tasty but lacking a certain freshness, and I definitely have had better in my short time Vietnam! We ordered up hoping to take away good memory’s of our last lunch time outing ... it was sadly not to be. I was expecting more for the prices on the menu, the good reviews & I admit it..the decor (I’m a sucker for a well presented place), but when I looked around I noticed people on their phones, staff that weren’t really interested, we weren’t having a good time & ....the wine glasses hanging above the bar cloudy & dull looking ..more pride, music, happy customers chatting away, staff willing to talk or explain the menu can make a lot of difference. We didn’t order the desert because the staff didn’t come over & ask. I got up to pay at the counter & that was that .. nice but not amazing

Thank Nia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 31 March 2018 via mobile

+Tasty grub with lots of flavor
+Nice atmosphere
+Clean
+Kid-friendly
+Reasonable prices

Only minor complaint was that the bar did not have tonic so darn, no gin & tonics. Aside from that Secret House is a solid option.

Thank Kate W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 31 March 2018

This gem provides great value for dinner on a modest budget. Our meals were very fresh and the portions generous. We particularly enjoyed the grapefruit and prawn salad, enough for a meal in itself. Located on a quiet side street is is a pleasant, relaxing way to wind down the day. Definitely a must.

Thank Jan G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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