Shape of animals – O mai. O mai, sweetened and spiced dried fruit, is considered a typical delicacy of Hanoians and anyone visiting the capital will want to buy O mai as a gift for their relatives or friends.
Among the shops selling O mai on Hang Duong (Sugar) Street in Hanoi’s Old Quarter, Gia Loi Shop owned by Bui Van Hung, is well-known for delicious and unique O mai.
Here, there are various kinds of O mai in the shapes of tortoises, rabbits, squirrels, ants, storks and shrimp, which are made from a variety of fruits including wampee fruit, apricots, mangoes and star-fruit.
Thanks to his great passion, skillfulness and creativeness, Bui Van Hung creates unique products imbued with his own designs. To make tortoise-shaped O mai, he uses a dried persimmon to create the turtle-shell and a dried kumquat to create its head. The tortoise is also made from a dried persimmon.
He also creates cute rabbits with long ears and short tails, which carry a small drum. These are made from dried canariums, grapes and sugar-coated kiwi fruit. He also skillfully turns star-fruit into squirrels with long tails.
From sugar-coated persimmons, he creates lifelike lobsters whose claws are made from bamboo toothpicks. He also makes characters, such as Sun Wukong, Zhu Baje and Sha Wujing from the famous film “Journey to the West”.
Young people are interested in O mai at the shop of Bui Van Hung.
With its unique O mai products, Gia Loi Shop has become a popular address for both domestic and foreign customers.