Spending VND10,000 (US$0.48) for a cup of ice lemon tea, taking a canvas or a plastic chair and talking from 7pm to 11pm: that’s what hundreds local youths have done in Hanoi.
The drinks were first sold at some small street coffee shops and then spread widely in Hanoi in recent years. To many young people, you can’t say that you’ve been to the capital city without having a cup of lemon tea on Nha Tho, Ly Quoc Su or Dao Duy Tu streets.
Lately, Hanoi’s tra chanh chem gio, which is considered a local specialty, has come to the southern city. There are several areas where many teenagers gather to enjoy lemon tea, including District 1’s Nguyen Trai Street and the area near Coopmart Rach Mieu supermarket in Phu Nhuan District.
Besides lemon tea, a group of vendors are always willing to serve customers famous street foods, including banh trang nuong (barbecued rice paper), ho lo nuong (barbecued meat balls) and pho mai que (fried cheese stick). Since they originated in Hanoi, lemon tea shops in HCMC also bring their customers a taste from the northern city through specialties like sua chua nep cam (yogurt mixed with sticky rice), nuoc sau (melon juice) and hat huong duong (fried sunflower seeds).0