Shamballa Vegetarian Restaurant and Tea House is one of the top-rated restaurants on Tripadvisor in District 1. So after reading all of the glowing reviews, we decided we had to try it for ourselves.
Unfortunately, we found Shamballa to be overpriced by Vietnam standards, especially considering the small portion sizes. And while the four dishes that we tried were decent, none of them were outstanding.
Considering just how many amazing and inexpensive restaurants there are in District 1, this one can definitely be skipped.
One thing Shamballa Vegetarian definitely has going for it is an elegant setting and peaceful atmosphere.
When you enter the restaurant you will get the friendliest greeting from everyone on staff. The restaurant is airconditioned (so much so that I was wishing I had a sweater), the decor is beautiful, and it will make you feel like you’re having a fancy night out in Ho Chi Minh City.
The servers are very friendly and attentive and speak very good English.
Shamballa offers a vegetarian take on classic Vietnamese dishes; you won’t find any meat dishes here.
The menu is quite large so you’ll have plenty of options, but making a decision can be difficult. The descriptions are in English and they have photos of the dishes so you’ll know exactly what you’re ordering.
We ordered 4 dishes and assumed that it would be a massive amount of food, but we ate everything and neither of us left feeling stuffed.
Of the items we ordered, we thought that the banana curry (cà ri chuối sáp) and the Shamballa wellness salad (gỏi phúc lộc thọ Shamballa) were good, but that the three-layered tofu (đậu hũ ba tầng) was bland. And the Shamballa fried rice (cơm chiên Shamballa) is one of their signature dishes but it’s just fried rice covered in melted cheese.
As mentioned, we felt that Shamballa Vegetarian Restaurant was overpriced and underwhelming.
Dishes cost at least 100k VND (~$4.50 USD) for a small portion. You’ll need to order at least three dishes to be shared between 2 people, and probably a few more. So expect a $20 USD bill at a minimum, not including any beverages.
It might not sound like much, but $20 USD goes a long way in Vietnam.
There are so many amazing restaurant options in District 1 that are far better and less expensive than Shamballa Vegetarian Restaurant. Unless you are a strict vegetarian and looking for a fancy night out, this restaurant is skippable.
Location: 17-19 Trịnh Văn Cấn, St, Quận 1, Hồ Chí Minh, Vietnam