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Aug 18, 2023 / 14:28

Hanoi culture-inspired mooncakes hit the market

Folk paintings, ca tru singing, and traditional lacquer art of Hanoi has become the inspiration for artisans to make mooncakes for Mid-Autumn Festival this year.

The Mid-Autumn Festival (15th day of the eighth lunar month or September 29 this year) is approaching, businesses are also starting to introduce unique collections of mooncakes that are not only delicious but also carry a cultural story.

This year, the Hanoi mooncake market is vibrant with many mooncake collections inspired by the capital's culture.

With inspiration from the traditional lacquer painting "Autumn Moon Shadow" by artist Hoang Huu Van, a moon cake collection called Moonlight has just been launched in Hanoi as part of the "Moon n Sun Project - Touching a Dream".

The painting tells the story of a full moon night in August, with a little girl's dreamy eyes looking up at the sky and the familiar images of the Mid-Autumn Festival: lion dance, lantern procession and moon cakes.

Using traditional colors, Autumn Moon Shadow conveys a sense of nostalgia, bringing viewers back to their childhood atmosphere of the traditional Mid-Autumn Festival, which is deeply etched in the memories of many Vietnamese people.

This painting inspired Hoang My Lien, CEO of Moon n Sun Company, to develop a collection of mooncakes stored in lacquer boxes made by artisans from Ha Thai Lacquer Village in Hanoi.

According to Lien, Mid-Autumn Festival is the most awaited festival among children, a chance for family members to reunite and enjoy a feast under the moonlight. It is a memory in every person. It evokes traditional cultural values attached to every Vietnamese family.

That's why she put a special touch on this cultural product to make this year's mooncake market unique.

"The cultural and artistic background is a valuable material for applied product design to add value to Vietnamese products while spreading culture in a new and attractive way. With this project, we want to tell the public many stories about Vietnamese culture and tradition," Lien said.


With the same inspiration of moonlight, Hanoi Daewoo Hotel releases the Moonlight Symphony mooncake collection.

Set against a backdrop of vibrant colors, mosaic art takes center stage with its eye-catching and intricate geometric patterns.

Featuring the essence of premium ingredients along with an esoteric recipe aged for nearly three decades, this mooncake collection represents the quintessential fusion of traditional cuisine with a contemporary twist.

Hyatt Regency West Hanoi also draws inspiration from Hanoi's culture and heritage.

Ca tru (ceremonial singing) is an exceptional form of musical expression that embodies an exquisite fusion of lyrical poetry and mellifluous melodies while resonating with the elegance of Trang An (Hanoi's informal name). This radiant national pride has been solemnly recognized not only throughout Vietnam but also by UNESCO as a masterpiece of intangible cultural heritage for all mankind.

For Mid-Autumn Festival 2023, Hyatt Regency West Hanoi is collaborating with artist Nguyen Duc Dai Duong to create an artwork entitled Oanh vang ky ngo (Rendezvous of Beautiful Voices) - a vivid depiction of a traditional ca tru performance within the timeless space of ancient Thang Long, showcasing the harmonious blend of poetry, music and painting; bridging the past and the present while conveying a message of unity, abundance, happiness and togetherness during this festive lunar season.

Each mooncake box plays an important role as a cultural ambassador, embodying pride and spreading our commitment to preserving ca tru as an intangible heritage of mankind," said Duong.

Ahead of the Mid-Autumn Festival, Sofitel Legend Metropole Hanoi has launched six distinctive moon cakes in special gift boxes inspired by the new charm of the hotel's century-old Metropole Wing.

Inspired by exquisite 18th-century toile de jouy printed fabrics, the boxes feature enchanting scenes of old Hanoi illustrated in monochromatic hues. Each brushstroke breathes life into the fabric, creating a tableau that celebrates the city's rich heritage. Adorned with lavish gold foil accents, the boxes add a touch of opulence and grandeur, embodying the spirit of celebration and abundance.

This year's Mooncakes, created by Metropole Hanoi's culinary team, come in six unique flavors: Traditional Mix; Black Sesame and Sunflower Seed; Orange and Grand Marnier; Green Bean, Apricot and Salted Egg; Vietnamese Coffee and Mixed Nuts; and Mango, Passion Fruit and Vanilla.

Inspired by the traditional Hang Trong woodblock painting from Hanoi's Old Quarter - Ly Ngu Vong Nguyet (Carps Gazing Mid-Autumn Moon), the Sheraton Hanoi Hotel's Mooncake Collection depicts a pair of carps chasing the brilliant reflection of the full moon on the surface of the water.

The carp have been engraved in the minds of many Vietnamese people for many generations, appearing through the legend of the Kitchen Gods or the story of crossing the Dragon Gate with a strong, resilient spirit, always pursuing good values. There is also the poetic image of the moon, which represents wealth, fulfillment and prosperity.

The Swiss brand Davidoff Café has also been inspired by the folk painting Carps Gazing Mid-Autumn Moon to launch a moon cake collection that combines tradition and modernity. The Davidoff Mooncake, an innovation in the field of savory cakes, is wrapped in a fine layer of traditional Japanese mochi to ensure that the taste lingers long after the last piece has been eaten. Davidoff's signature tiramisu flavor, which has won the hearts of even the most discerning customers, is also featured in this moon cake collection.