Mỹ Tho is famous for its noodle soup Hu Tieu My Tho, (more common in South Vietnam is Hu Tieu Nam Vang – literally Hu Tieu Phnom Penh Style). Hu Tieu My Tho is typically a clear pork broth with rice vermicelli and wheat flour noodles (mi) combined. Sliced pork, meaty pork bones, offal such as intestines, liver, and heart and fresh shrimp, and possibly deep fried wonton. The soup is then garnished by the diner to the individual taste with salad leaves, garlic chives, beans sprouts, lime, fresh chili, soy sauce, and vinegar. The noodles can be served dry with the soup on the side, or as a noodle soup.
Also famous in My Tho is Bo Vien or beef balls. There are very busy stalls near the My Tho market that serve only Bo Vien in beef broth or with Hu Tieu noodle. It is eaten with very hot chili sauce (tuong ot).
As the regional capital My Tho is the main market dealing in all the produce from the region as well as fish and seafood from My Tho’s large ocean-going fishing fleet. The very large and exuberant market is one of South Vietnam’s biggest sources for dried fish and other dried seafood products such as Kho Muc (dried squid). At night the market is dedicated to the dealing and sorting of Mekong River fish, particularly catfish for Ho Chi Minh City’s wholesale markets. Produce, especially fruit and vegetables, is delivered by boat directly to the market.
It is a popular starting point for tourists to take a boat trip on the Mekong River.
My Tho is the subject of “The Lesson”, a chapter in a memoir of the Vietnam War by Tobias Woolf, In Pharoah’s Army: Memories of the Lost War, describing the events of the 1968 Tet Offensive there.