The Saigoneer Podcast allows listeners to take our reporting, insight and banter anywhere through in-depth discussions on Vietnamese society and culture, as well as interviews with special guests.
'Things We Lost to the Water' Author Eric Nguyen
Eric Nguyen, editor-in-chief of DiaCritics and author of the new novel 'Things We Lost to the Water,' joins us today.
'Things We Lost to the Water' tells the story of a family who escapes Vietnam after the war and ends up settling in New Orleans, spanning a time period from the late 1970s to the destruction of Hurricane Katrina in August 2005.
We discussed why he set the story in New Orleans, why the theme of water is so important to the book, what he wants readers to take away from it, his work at DiaCritics, and much more.
Learn more about Eric's debut novel: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/652032/things-we-lost-to-the-water-by-eric-nguyen/
And check out DiaCritics: https://dvan.org/diacritics/
Vietnam's Contemporary Coffee Culture & A Street Food Update
In recent years, coffee producers in Vietnam have switched from focusing almost entirely on mass-market, low-quality products to more specialized beans aimed at discerning consumers. What does this mean for both coffee producers and coffee drinkers? (1:04)
Then (20:36), we share some of our favorite recent street food finds, including pork belly in District 11 and affordable, authentic Thai near the canal.
As always, we end with Bánh Mì Banter (31:25).
Domestic Tourism Amid the Pandemic with Urbanist Travel's Chau Nguyen
This week we're joined by Chau Nguyen (0:54), the founder of Urbanist Travel, to discuss how she shifted from a focus on international tourists to the domestic market amid pandemic flight restrictions, what the tourism industry should do to prepare for the eventual return of foreign visitors, and more.
As always, we close with Bánh Mì Banter (27:08).
Saigon's Modernist Architecture with Phạm Phú Vinh
This week, we return to one of our favorite topics: Vietnamese modernist architecture.
Phạm Phú Vinh, an architecture student and expert on this style, joined us (1:16) to talk about the prevalence of mid-century modernist buildings in southern Vietnam, why this home-grown style is so overlooked by the public, what he thinks about Saigon's current architectural trends, and more.
We also chatted about Vinh's new book, 'Poetic Significance, Sài Gòn Mid-Century Modernist Architecture,' which is available on Amazon, Book Depository, and other e-commerce sites.
As always, we end with Bánh Mì Banter (41:00).
Link to Vinh's book: https://www.amazon.com/Poetic-Significance-Mid-Century-Modernist-Architecture/dp/108794337X/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=Poetic+Significance%2C+S%C3%A0i+G%C3%B2n+Mid-Century+Modernist+Architecture&qid=1617540326&sr=8-1
Levi Oi on Her DJ Career & Saigon's War on Karaoke
On this week's show, Levi Doan, known as Levi Oi, joins us (1:00) to talk about her move from Berlin to Saigon, how she became a sought-after DJ in Vietnam, and the opportunities present in the country's creative community.
Check out her SoundCloud page here: https://soundcloud.com/levioi
We also talked with Levi about the new campaign by Saigon officials to crack down on noise pollution (22:44), especially outdoor karaoke and bars that blast music onto the sidewalk.
As always, we end with Bánh Mì Banter (35:49).
COVID-19 Vaccinations Begin; Vietnam's Most Controversial Dishes
On this week's show, we begin (1:12) by discussing Vietnam's COVID-19 vaccination campaign, which began last week with an initial focus on medical workers. What do we think of the vaccine priority list, which places solders above the elderly, and how might vaccinations impact the country this year?
Then (16:10), we debate some of Vietnam's most controversial dishes, from hột vịt lộn and field rats to dog meat.
As always, we end with Bánh Mì Banter (28:48).
Link to Khoi's Vietnamese indie Spotify playlist: https://open.spotify.com/playlist/6TJNIj5ugIsxnqfed4wjtx?si=vCYg54wHQvGBSQIKHZMpHQ&nd=1
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This podcast has progressively gone downhill
I used to enjoy the podcast. It’s become a laborious listen and I unsubscribed. There’s just too many negatives about this podcast to overlook at this point that I gave up.
I like this podcast. The people are neat and well spoken. They have interesting guests and topics.