Dailo’s Kitchen and Bar, a new incarnation of an old favourite honours a local legend. Review by Brett Davis, photo by Jonny Edbrooke.
Located towards the end of the newly-expended Thai Van Lung Street is the latest iteration of a bar with some serious pedigree.
Dailo’s Kitchen and Bar is from the team behind Red Bar, which was forced to relocate due to a steep rent increase on the property on Ngo Duc Ke. These are the guys who over the years brought Saigon the legendary Underground among others.
The Dailo is Cantonese for ‘big brother’, and is a tribute to the late Michael Keung, who was part of the original ownership group. His portrait hangs in the new bar, several actually, surrounded by hundreds of messages. A telling indication of the many valued friends he had in this town.
There is a formula for putting together a good bar: good value drinks, a menu of favourites with something for everyone, and a convivial atmosphere. Dailo’s, not surprisingly, delivers on all three fronts.
The epic 9am to 9pm happy hour remains, with Tiger, Heineken and Larue only VND 35,000 (VND 45,000 after 9pm). A good list of classic cocktails range from VND 120,000 to VND 140,000.
For wine lovers, the list here is the real stand out. There are 17 old- and new- world wines on offer, but the great thing is 15 of them are available by the glass for VND 120,000 to VND 130,000. Too often there is a paucity of wines available by the glass and you have to settle for something other than what you are after unless you commit to a whole bottle.
The menu is a straightforward affair, but with a varied enough selection to keep everyone happy. There’s a choice of set lunch options of two or three courses for between VND 175,000 and VND 215,000.
The flatbread pizzas, cooked on the barbeque, are very popular and go for VND 165,000 to VND 185,000. One of the more epic dishes that does remain from menus past is the Chateaubriand [price to come], and the sizzling hunk of 500 gram New Zealand tenderloin sliced and served on a hot platter.
A bar menu would not be complete without a burger or chicken wings, and here Dailo’s does not disappoint. The Wagyu beef burger [price to come] is the only burger on the menu for a reason. Do you really need anything else? The chicken wings (VND 180,000) come with a delicious twist, stuffed with bacon and cheddar cheese, and are not to be missed.
There is a friendly atmosphere at Dilo’s and the many long-serving staff will remember your name after a few visits. Live music is the feature entertainment several nights a week, and there’s pool and darts to keep you occupied between drinks.
It is a bar that follows the formula well, and the loyal following of patrons will be honouring ‘big brother’ for a long time to come.