#50. San Cho

298-302 High St,

Kew VIC

(03) 9852 9119

We celebrated the 1st month of my cousin’s little boy, Emmanuel over the weekend and of course, lots of food accordingly :).  Our CNY was a very low-key one so this little relo get-together for the little one made it feel more like CNY for me… plus, a few red pockets never hurt anyone ;).  As much as I loved receiving them, I’m looking forward to the day when I can give out some red pockets of my own if anyone gets my drift hehehe.

As per tradition, all guests were presented with eggs dyed red for the festivities and the choice of eggs are to symbolise new life (?).

Standard cold meat platter… I hadn’t eaten at all before this feast so it tasted particularly good :).

Instead of plain rice, the family hosting the lunch opted for abalone fried rice…I really liked it but didn’t realise that it was to be eaten with the main dishes that came after… and hence, I finished my own bowl before any other dishes came hehehe.

This was a very interesting tasting dish… because the menu was already set, I had no idea what the name of it was but it had an odd taste that took us a while to work out… turns out it had kumquat flavoured sauce… definitely not your usual Chinese seasoning, but interesting…

This was my favourite… again, I’m not sure what it was called but the egg based dish with rice noodles was so silky that I kept going back for more… it was very light too so made it more enjoyable.

Chow with fermented tofu flavouring… nice.

Steamed chicken…. standard I guess.  Was a bit dry for my liking.

Fish!  Not sure what kind… but it was alright.  I was kinda full by the time this came out… *shrugs*

‘Twas a lovely lunch, especially since I got to see my little (2nd) cousin for the first time :).  Probably not somewhere I’d go specifically to again but if I was in the area, it’s somewhere you know can’t really go wrong :).

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 7/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 7/10

Service: 8/10

Value for money: bit hard to say since I wasn’t paying lols

♥ Ames

P.S. I think this will be my last post for a while… I probably shouldn’t have even written this but I’d just resized these photos so I thought I’d indulge a bit before heading full steam ahead for this essay!! Take care people :).

P.P.S. Though I haven’t written up every single one yet, this post also marks the completion of goal #21. from my 101 in 1001 list ! Woot !

Review: Your Thai + Bonus

255 Swanston Street,

Melbourne VIC 3000

(03) 9663 8010 ‎

Date visited: 3rd January 2011

In the company of equally indecisive people, we eventually concluded that Thai food was usually a safe option so we headed into the crowded Your Thai Rice and Noodle Bar during their busy lunch hour.  I’ve come here a few times so their menu wasn’t a surprise to me but as mentioned earlier, making a food choice at these lunch places isn’t my forte (especially since they had photos of all the dishes in the menu as well!).  Anyway, we finally were able to make some decisions.  The friend sitting next door to me ordered Five Spices Chicken Ribs with Rice:

It is actually a Chinese dish (they had a number of Chinese and Vietnamese dishes on the menu) which she said tasted quite authentic, similar to the kind she has had at home before.  I went for the Thai Prawn Salad:

I found it quite refreshing after coming in from Melbourne’s summer heat, thought it was a tad too sweet for my liking.  The other two lunch buddies had standard Chinese dishes which I got a bit snap-shy to take photos of, but I did take a photo of this:

Satay Chicken.  Do. Not. Eat. This.  Incredibly dry and hence difficult to swallow… though, since I hate wasting food, I struggled through three of the four skewers… after drenching them in the satay sauce (which wasn’t bad I guess). Half way through my salad, I got a tad envious of the smoothies others had bought, so I ordered a Jackfruit Smoothie!

‘Twas nice but again, a bit too sweet and others felt the same about their drinks too.  Overall, if I’m ever in a jam with no place in mind to eat at, Your Thai isn’t a bad option.  Prices are reasonable but a hit and miss because of that satay chicken… never again!

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 6/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 8/10

Service: 7/10

Value for money: 8/10

**BONUS**

Not really that exciting, but when I came home that day, my relos had come to visit and one of my aunties brought us some snack foods she’d recently been introduced to:

Brie Cheese, Fig and Walnut Paste on CrackerThins = divine :).  I’ve always been a fan of cheese and crackers for afternoon tea (and by ‘always’ I mean, probably for the last couple of years, give or take a few) but I haven’t had this combo before and fell in love at first bite :).  Fig and Fennel Paste is equally as good too :).  Enjoy!

♥ April

#46. Dao Vien

22 Buckingham Avenue,

Springvale VIC 3171

(03) 9546 6564 ‎

Being an avid lover and follower of food blogs, I’ve decided to dabble a bit here as part of the move over to this new home :).  I’ve done mini reviews in the past as part of goal #21 of the 101 in 1001 project, but I thought I’d try my hand at it and see what happens…. so here it goes!

Date visited: 5th January 2011

We were killing time while waiting for my Auntie to finish her ‘beautification’ process at a family friend’s house and as we were in the area (and hungry!), Dad suggested to have ‘Banh Canh Cua’ which is a Vietnamese-tomato-based-crab-noodle-soup-kinda-thing and if you are ever in Springvale, Dao Vien is the restaurant famous for this dish in Asian circles.

It’s a bit dodgy looking on the outside, with lace curtains hiding the busy atmosphere of the shop from passerbys and once you go in, you are left standing to find your own table and if you don’t signal to the staff, you’ll be left waiting around (service is not an ingredient of most Vietnamese restaurants in Springvale… well, in most of Melbourne).  We actually saw one couple get up and leave in exasperation because no one came to serve them.  Being in the company of  seasoned Vietnamese restaurant patrons, we called over a member of staff (I have a feeling he was the owner of the shop) and placed our orders.  Here’s the thing with some of these Vietnamese restaurants.  Some only make a certain number of each kind of dish per day and when they are done, they won’t make anymore.  So sadly, we were advised that they had run out of ‘Banh Canh Cua’.   I quickly scanned the menu and picked out ‘Hu Tieu Tom Thit’ instead (I’m putting things in inverted commas since I’m not sure how to do the accents):

So as you can see, ‘Hu Tieu Tom Thit’ is a beef, prawn rice noodle soup dish which was quite good indeed.  Unfortunately, I didn’t take photos of the dishes my parents had (I felt a bit awkward sitting cramped up at the corner table getting odd looks from other patrons) but my Dad had the dry noodle version of this dish and my mum had some spicy noodle soup that she couldn’t finish because of the spicy-ness.  She ate a bit of my dish and declared that they did the soup very well and authentically…and she ordered one herself :).  The soup was rich in flavour but not too salty which is can be the downfall in any Vietnamese soup dish.  Sadly, there was only one prawn in my bowl :(.  I’ll have to go back and try the ‘Banh Canh Cua’ one day… probably best to call in first to check if they still have any orders left because this is one place that is constantly overturning customers, especially during lunch hour.  Other than that, there’s are a lot of other Vietnamese restaurants to try around Springvale so I wouldn’t exactly make this a favourite, but if you are in the area, unsure where to go, it’s a reasonably priced place to have a quick bite to eat. 

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 6/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 5/10

Service: 3/10

Value for money: 7/10

So how did I go?

♥ April