|Taste Danang, Discover Danang|
Martin Yan spent two days experiencing Danang when he was a MC and a main character of "Taste of Vietnam" – a reality show expected to broadcast in Vietnam and international channels such as AFC, PBS... Martin Yan's journey traveled through three of country's regions to discover Vietnams abundant cuisine that has been formed due to the diversity of nature and culture in our 54-ethnic country. Through Martin Yan's culinary adventure different localities, tourists gradually discover the space and time by their own to experience the land which had evoked the impression of war.
During Martin Yan's short visit he enjoyed two of Da Nang's specialty foods and really inspired people to travel and discover the places he visited.
Martin Yan enjoyed the Da Nang speacilties Bún chả cá Đà Nẵng (Fish cake noodle) and Bánh tráng cuốn thịt heo hai đầu da (Rice paper rolls with pork). Bún chả cá Đà Nẵng is the more outstanding dish of the two specialities because the fish cakes are made from well-ground sea fish which Yan described as "a very special feeling in the mouth, the tastiest ever!" This dish is remarkable with its unique consommé that is flavourful but elegant thanks to vegetables.
The true authentic specialities in Danang that cannot be mistaken, is Bánh tráng cuốn thịt heo hai đầu da. Despite the nationwide presence of spingrolls, Danang people have meticulously perfected the recipe to make this speciality so popular. This dish is special with pork cleverly cut with skin at both ends, served with fresh, diverse vegetables and fish sauce that made Yan lavish in his compliments "Danang masterpiece! Perfect recipe! This dish simply fits my taste!"
Yan is well-known for his passion and enthusiasm that inspires others, people could not help their craving while they watched as Yan performed and enjoyed Bánh tráng cuốn thịt heo. Yan was excited to use a rice paper to press on a leaf-noodle, then fresh vegetables to be the third layer. The well-cut piece of pork seemed shining under the sunlight, carefully added on the top. Then, Yan rolled it tightly and cleverly. And "a combination of tastes" was formed! No no, it could not be called "a taste combination of tastes" until it was dipped into the spicy, irresistible fish sauce. It is a feeling of pride and satisfaction to any Danang citizen to see Yan closing his eyes while eating to express his praise on this local food.
... and discover Danang
Along with the enjoyment and introduction of the local food, in two urgent filming days, Yan managed to visit the Marble Mountains – the historical and cultural landmark of Danang and wandered along My Khe beach, one of six most beautiful beaches in the world.
Martin Yan arrived at the Marble Mountains on an early chilly November morning with a gentel mist blurring the glass of the 50 meter high outdoor elevator leading to Xa Loi tower on Water Mountain. The modern elevator seemed lost in the landscape of imposing mountains but it helped tourists save their energy instead of climbing 156 stone steps at Western entrance of Water Mountain – the highest and most beautiful mountain of Marble Mountains where ancient pagodas have welcomed great deal of tourist to visit and worship. As the sight-seeing route, Yan stopped to burn incense at Tam Thai pagoda after leaving Xa Loi tower. Tam Thai pagoda is more than 300 years old and managed by 12 generations of abbot. It was renovated and conferred National Pagoda in 1825 by Minh Mang King. In Yan's view, Tam Thai National Pagoda is clear proof of the historical depth and Buddhism mark of Marble Mountain. To express this view, Yan filmed at the pagoda's gate with green moss and old, meditative appearance. Yan himself a Buddhist burned incense whilst praying at the Buddha statue in the middle of pagoda's yard. That is Smile Buddha who has a generous smile and a big stomach that can contain all sadness of humans. Incense smoke condensing in the wet air of a rainy day makes the landscape of Tam Thai National Pagoda more vaporous and scared.
Not far from Tam Thai pagoda is Vong Giang Dai (River Watching Tower) that is gives views of Cam Le, the Co Co River and a whole view of the Marble Mountains. Every narrow stone steps lead Yan's steps to 7 square-meter tower, where there is an old, 2 meter-height stele erected in 1837, and sculptured "Vong Giang Dai" in Chinese. From Vong Giang Dai, Yan had the whole view of a natural picture including the green winding Cam Le river, Go Noi – the hometown of Quang Nam' heroes, and great Truong Son mountains.
Huyen Khong Cave is an unmissable attraction of Marble Mountains because it is the largest and most beautiful cave, containing many legends. Tan Da poet has written 2 poem sentences describing Huyen Khong Cave as a ethereal place: "Visit Huyen Khong Cave together/ Leave this world of dust". Huyen Khong Cave looks like an overturned giant bell with the flad foundation and the high arch receiving light and air throught the 5 natural holes in the exterior of the cave. Huyen Khong Cave is place to worship Chua Tien (the goddess who brings richness), Chua Thuong Ngan (the goddess who brings peace), Phat Quan Am (Avalokitevara), Quan Thanh (3 gods) and Ong To Ba Nguyet (matchmaker). These places of worship in Huyen Khong Cave are very scared. Therefore, these are always visited by worshipers, especially from 2nd to 8th of Lunar March.
Yan had just finished the cuisine filming in the late afternoon. Then, he hurriedly travelled to My Khe Beach to enjoy the last of the afternoon. By the end of Novemeber a pensive My Khe is enveloped by the whizzing sound of chasing winds and the soft whisos of sunset. The dawning of the full moon at sunset gave Yan a truly perfect My Khe experience. My Khe beach in that day was a grace and charming beauty making Yan utter: "My Khe's reputation is well merited" as he watched the dawn of moon sparkling over the waves
During the short time Martin Yan spent in Danang and all he that he visited and experienced, he shared his whole feelings to audiences of his show. His enthusiasm and passion opened up a new view of Danang through his "Taste of Vietnam" show. The people of Danang are really looking forward to see a new Danang in "Taste of Vietnam", with special senses and endless inspiration from Martin Yan.