A Forgettable Dinner at Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)

For dinner on the first day, we were brought to Apsara, a Vietnamese restaurant located in Da Nang city, Vietnam. From the outside, the restaurant showed some promise: the exterior of the restaurant exuded an old world charm with a touch of Balinese (a blend of attractive neon lights and woody décor), while the interior was simple but slightly tired. 
Entrance of Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)
The brightly lit neon lights
When we entered, there was a stage on the right that had live traditional music, which was played (almost) throughout our dinner. As a finale to the traditional music performance, there was a traditional dance performance which added to the atmosphere. It would have been better if the musicians were more absorbed in their performance, but it looked like they were just going through the motions monotonously.

Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)
Preparing for the performance

Apsara is apparently a restaurant that is known for providing a unique dining experience. So there was a little anticipation of the good food to come, especially so since we had a fulfilling lunch at Morning Glory Restaurant earlier in the afternoon that day. However, the somewhat good impression and anticipation ended as soon as the food was served. We had about 40 people in our group and were seating in tables of 4s, but the food portions and variety was lacking and uncreative. So much so that it put a damper on our moods.

Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)
The table setting

The food was disappointing:
    The starter: squid salad with mango slices (or is it papaya) with herbs and a couple of small prawns. The starter was not too bad but every dish thereafter was downhill.
    Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)
    The stir fired vegetables with squid (again!) which tasted more like Chinese than Vietnamese.
    Apsara (Vietnamese Restaurant)
    A small plate of simple stir-fried vegetables which is also more Chinese than Vietnamese.
    A pathetically small bowl of soup with small pieces of what was supposed to be fish(balls?) and stalks of vegetable. Compare it to the rice bowl behind, and you'd think the soup was for 1 - 2 people rather than 4.
A plate of fish, which was good for 1-2 persons not 4. And a big bowl of white rice… that was it…

Drinks were not included in the package, so when we ordered our drinks they took ages to arrive. We ordered our drinks before the arrival of the food, but by the time the drinks arrived, it was already towards the end of our meal. We had to remind the wait staff of our drink orders at least thrice. Moreover, the bill come up to be pretty expensive just for the drinks; totally not worth it.

In conclusion, this restaurant is one that I would not recommend. The overall dining experience was underwhelming: the food was disappointing, the service lacking, prices exorbitant, and performances non-spectacular, even the décor needs some updating. You are better off dining at some (cheaper and probably more satisfying) restaurants nearby the area instead of dining at this restaurant.

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