Top 5 places to get a taste of Myanmar
‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’. This old saying still holds true- the best way to get to know a foreign land is to dive in to the local culture head first. And when visiting Myanmar one of the best ways to connect to the people and their way of life is through food!
Eating is more than just a functional part of the day for Myanmar people. Sitting down for a meal is a social occasion, a chance for us to spend time with friends and family. Dining at a local restaurant gives you the opportunity to see and experience our traditional food culture.
In this blog, we share with you our top five picks for Yangon restaurants that give you a taste of Myanmar cuisine and culture. Be warned: you will get hungry while reading this blog!
Taste of Myanmar #1: Taing Yin Thar
Taing Yin Thar is a unique restaurant in Yangon. The menu is filled with dishes from the different regions of Myanmar, rather than one specific cuisine. You can taste dishes from the Kachin State, Shan State, Mon State and more- each region having different herbs and cooking styles. You will be surprised at the variety that is found in our country, from spicy curries to salads bursting with texture and sublime flavors. The restaurant prides itself on cooking its dishes with cetana, which loosely translates to ‘compassion’. Using authentic family recipes and fresh produce sourced directly from Myanmar farmers, the meal is certain to be a taste bud-pleasing experience.
Taste of Myanmar #2: Sharky’s
You may be surprised to see the menu at Sharky’s! Items such as buffalo mozzarella, smoked meats and homemade cheeses are just a few of the ingredients used in their signature dishes. The founder of Sharky’s is a passionate foodie and after overseas trips, he has brought artisanal food to Myanmar. Sharky’s works with small-scale farms to produce western-style, 100% organic ingredients. So try a pizza or a sharing platter of Myanmar cheeses and meats washed down with a bottle of wine from the Shan State. You won’t regret it!
Taste of Myanmar #3: House of Memories
As the name says, House of Memories is housed in a historic colonial villa. The house is more than 100 years old and stepping inside is like stepping back in time. There are vintage photos, valuable antiques and more. Upstairs you can see the room where General Aung San had his first office during the establishment of the Burmese Independence Army (BIA). Dining on traditional Myanmar cuisine in this atmospheric setting is sure to be a memorable meal!
Taste of Myanmar #4: Shwe Pu Zun
Although the name translates to ‘golden prawn’, Shwe Pu Zun is a bakery, cafe and sweets shop! The restaurant is a long-standing favorite of Yangon residents and has recently opened more branches in other towns around Myanmar. Try their most popular item- faluda, a delicious Indian-inspired dessert of ice cream, tapioca jellies and savory bread chunks. Or come for breakfast and sample traditional Burmese dishes. You will likely be surrounded by Myanmar families, couples and students who come to dine before or after work! There are pre-packed sweets to take away if you wish to take a taste of Myanmar to your friends and family back home!
Taste of Myanmar #5: Karaweik Palace
For a full Myanmar experience, why not enjoy dinner with a performance of traditional song and dance? Karaweik Palace is the destination for a night out. Located in the middle of Kandawgyi Park, Karaweik is built in the style of a royal barge and hosts a nightly show. The multi-act evening showcases a variety of performances dating back to the Bagan era of the 11th century up until the mid-20th century. The professional performers don elaborate costumes and exhibit incredible skill as the country’s theatrical history is displayed on stage. If you can take your eyes off the stage, you will notice that your meal is served on a traditional daung lan tray. The tasty, traditional cuisine is sure to satisfy your stomach while your eyes and ears are treated to an unforgettable spectacle on stage!
Have we tempted your taste buds? We welcome you to discover Myanmar culture through our cuisine. Only when you sample our national dishes will you get a real understanding of our culture!