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Morning Glory Signature Restaurant, Hoi An

Morning Glory Signature on An Hoi island in Hoi An is one of my favourite restaurants in Hoi An. I am not saying it’s the best, mainly because I’m not a professional food critic, and I believe food will always be subjective, but it is definitely one of my personal favourites. Unlike the original Morning Glory in Old Town that serves up wonderful traditional Hoi An and Vietnamese food, Morning Glory Signature caters to a more eclectic palate with its diverse menu and fusion-focused Vietnamese dishes.

The way it does this, is not simply by offering a wide menu, which it does, but by being so cavernously huge. This place is several restaurants in one, with multiple places to sit and drink and eat. The main Morning Glory Signature restaurant is upstairs and has a wonderfully large balcony overlooking the street below. It is a fantastic place for people watching, but fills up very quickly, so is often best to book if you know you want to be sitting there.

Morning glory signature hoi an balcony area
Morning Glory Signature Hoi An busy balcony

But apart from the eponymous Signature restaurant, there is also a vegan restaurant, Vy’s deli, and a Cafe selling Chinese dumplings. These are all nice places to sit (although not as nice as the balcony area, it has to be said) and all well covered by a fast-moving and efficient service staff.

The real beauty of this place, is that although there are several restaurants and menus to choose from, you don’t have to be sitting in the correct place to see each menu. In other words, you can be sitting in Morning Glory Signature and still order from the menu of Vy’s Deli, or the Vegan place. This opens up a world of possibilities, giving you the choice of everything from Vietnamese, Chinese, to Italian; from steak to seafood, to beef stew, and it means that each member of a party can order from a different menu and get a completely different style of food. It is not often that you get such a variety of different foods served in the same place with such a high level of quality.

This is the main reason it is one of my favourite restaurants in Hoi An. Of course, having so many options can get a little confusing, and sometimes finding what you want might be a little testing, but if you do find yourself getting frustrated looking through the menus, just ask the staff for the ipad, they will happily give it to you. And the ipad has pictures of all the dishes too. A much better way to peruse the menus, especially if you are a visual eater.

The Drinks

As you might expect, a place of this quality comes with a well-stocked menu of drinks to choose from. You will find everything you want here, from soft drinks, to beer, to spirits, to, of course, wine. This is the kind of place I like to drink wine in, and they have a lot of choice available. The better news is, that it is not as expensive as you might expect. In fact, a glass of red or white starts at around 120,000 VND, and there are several choices around this price point. This is certainly not as expensive as you see in other restaurants of this quality, and yet another reason why I keep coming back here.

The Food

As I have already stated, one of the positive points about Morning Glory Signature is how much choice you get from being able to choose separately from all of the different menus that they have on offer. Another positive point is just the sheer quality and taste of the food that comes. And I mean everything. Be it Vietnamese food, Chinese dumplings, or Italian food, the quality is high and the flavours immense.

The first time I came here was when my family was visiting from the UK. We went in as a large group and got seated on the balcony. This would be almost impossible now without a reservation, but Hoi An was still opening up after Covid at that time, and so the tourist numbers were lower. We ordered pretty much everything from their Vietnamese fusion menu and put everything out on the table to share as a group. This, in my view, is the best way to eat Asian food if you are in a group as you get to taste so many different things. And the tastes present in the dishes here are phenomenal. The standout for me is the crispy pork in tamarind sauce, but they are all so wonderful and varied. Each dish offers a completely different flavour profile to the next, so it gives your palate a good work out, in a very good way. These dishes are not your run-of-the-mill Hoi An dishes that you find in every other cafe and restaurant in Old Town, these dishes are special.

The next time we went to Morning Glory Signature, there was just me and Phuong. As expected we could not get a table on the balcony, so we settled for a table inside. This time we both fancied something different, though. Phuong had her mind set on dim sum, while I fancied a lasagna. Luckily we were in Morning Glory Signature, where all things are possible. We ordered a few different dishes of Chinese dumplings, a Greek salad with avocado, and I had my beef lasagna with garlic bread. A couple of glasses of Shiraz were in order to help wash the whole thing down.

Chicken and ginger dumplings

As you can probably tell, I find it difficult to remember to take photos before I start eating.

The standout of the dumplings were the chicken and ginger dumplings. These were a taste sensation. If you like ginger, then you will love these. They were simply delicious with quite the ginger spice hit, and my only regret, was that there were only 5 of them. I know for a fact that I will be ordering these every time I come here, regardless of my other orders. Phuong liked one of the other dumplings more as I think the ginger was a little too strong for her, so bear that in mind. To be fair, though, they were all very good, and extremely flavour-diverse.

My lasagna was also unexpectedly excellent. I don’t know why, but I wasn’t expecting it to be so good. Probably because their Asian food is so strong, that I thought they must have a weakness somewhere, and that weakness would probably be the lasagna. It wasn’t. When it first came, I have to admit, I thought it might be a little small, but by the end of it, and with everything else we had to eat, I had eaten more than enough. And it was delicious. They nailed the flavours that I love in lasagna, but also got the texture of both pasta and meat spot on. It is now, for me at least, probably the best lasagna I have had in Hoi An. I would even put it above the lasagna in Good Morning Vietnam

The prices aren’t bad either. For this standard of food, in a setting so nice, you would expect to be paying a premium, but it’s really not that expensive. For a rough benchmark, my lasagna was 155,000 VND. I don’t think anyone could complain about paying about $6.50 USD for the “best” lasagna in Hoi An.

To the time of writing this, then, I still haven’t had a dish in Morning Glory Signature that i did not like, or that I thought was disappointing. The quality is superb. The choice is phenomenal. And it is still probably my favourite restaurant in Hoi An. Now, as I said earlier, taste is subjective, so you might not like it as much as I do, but you should still go try and see for yourself. At least once. And have the chicken with ginger dumplings.

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