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Category: eating out

Pho Dzung


After my disappointing meal at Mekong in the city, I was really inspired to find a new place preferably in the city.
This place was cleaner than Mekong, but I would have liked to be a lot cleaner. 11 other bloggers have blogged about this place.

My server, unlike the others has a really poor grasp of English and watched over me like a hawk. He was an older guy. He just plonked me at my table and said when I asked him which was the best pho he said “You choose”. The other younger guy was much better to me and the couple that came in.
I have been to a few of these pho places before and I know what pho is all about. Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup with lots and lots of fillings. It’s like the chinese noodle soup but a big bigger and you can add in as little or as much mint, vegetables and condiments as you like. I have tried a medium bowl before and I know I couldn’t finish it. Hnece I went for the smaller bowls.
I had my usual special beef combination pho ($8.80 for a small) which was better than the disappointing dinner at Mekong. The soup was a tad bit salty but not overly so. This time the noodles were cooked and unbroken. This time there was brown sauce and lots of spring onions and fresh vegetables. But no pickled onions which I love with my soup. The tripe was a little too chewy but I loved the giblet.
I also had the Vietnamese white coffee ($3.50). It traditionally is with condensed milk and instant coffee. It wasn’t too bad, but my server could have told me to stir all the milk in. I found it was really sweet at the end.
I think I’d prefer to come here more often and maybe with my pho loving friend from Mekong. I know he’ll love this as much as I do.

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WE cafe


I know you probably think that I’m yelling, but that’s just the name of the cafe that I went to.
It is just outside of ther SAB building in the city.Hence this place is popular with the RMIT students from across the road.
The cafe is quite small and very homely. Because it is such as small place there is no bathroom. So I had to go across the road. The bathroom outside of wonderbao was locked. Inside SAB the bathroom was really hard to find. Everything is a maze in there. Of course there isn’t a lot of signage.

I had the the tofu bento which is the only vegetarian one for $8.50.  Drinks can be added for an extra $2. So I had a sweet iced green tea. It was served in a paper cup, why for eat in?
The bento was quite small. Looking around at the other tables it was fair to say that I expected a bigger meal.
Nevertheless the tofu was smooth and the spring rolls were good. Not too much Msg which I like. The rice is only so so but the veggies were fresh. If only they included more noms.
I might just be back to try out some of the other meals, maybe with Big Fil.

We Cafe on Urbanspoon

Chinatown market by Katherine


The Chinatown market is in Hefferman lane in the city and its held every third Friday from 4pm-10pm. This is one Asian Hawker style market which doesn’t occur often enough for all the Asians in Melbourne. Good thing that it was a sunny day today. Could enjoy being out in the sun
There was a few things on offer today… but there could have been more stuff such as Vietnamese food. I suppose given the space there really wasn’t much room for lots of stalls.
There were lots of people there today.
I got to try Popiah for the first time ($6.5- for two rolls), dumplings ($5 per plate) and winter melon tea. The dumplings were rather small and not very filling. There was 5 per small plate, hence $5 was a bit of a rip off. The vegetarian ones fell apart. The seafood one was just ok.

I really liked the Popiah. Popiah is a Malaysian spring roll, best enjoyed cold. You can choose vegetarian or meat and they come as mild or spicy. I chose the mild one because I wasn’t up for the spicy one. At $6.5 fwor two, I got myself a bargain as these were big, tasty and filling. Oh well at least I learnt what popiah is.
The winter melon tea was really sweet. In fact too sweet for my liking but oh well.
For a change there was also an ice cream truck. I didn’t have a chance to try the ice cream but I heard that it s really good.
Same as with the fish ball sticks, satay, noodles etc. I couldn’t stay long as I had a dinner meeting somewhere else in Melbourne. But whilst I was there I learned lots. The next time when I come we’ll have to try lots more stuff and stay for ages

Mekong


Mekong is a Vietnamese place that specializes in Pho. They have been around for donkey’s years but last year there was a decline in customers.
I didn’t really want to go but my friends in the Japan club really wanted to go and I enjoyed their company.
One of my friends really liked them for their cheap pho.
The place looked a tad bit dirty from the outside. But when we got inside our tables were clean, but the toilet was not. The bathrooms was small in size.
Our table of four was really cramped and we were shoved in the corner. I can understand why though- it was busy at 6.30pm.

There was free tea which we as students enjoyed.
Food came out five minutes after we had ordered. This is not a good sign because it means that it was microwaved.
My friends liked their small ($8.9) and large ($9.9) phos. I got a chance to try out one of the beef sausages and god it was really spicy. The friend that got the small one complained that it was not spicy enough and he wanted the brown sauce. Btw: where’s the pickled onions that comes with this?
My other friend and I had the spring rolls with rice vermicelli ($9.5). I had the vegetarian version and my friend had the meat one. My friend didn’t really like it and I have to agree on this as my noodles was cold and slightly undercooked. I would have liked it better if it was slightly warm. The pho shops in Footscray and Richmond does a better version of this. But I loved the spring rolls and the vegetables as they were fresh.

Sorry Mekong I really did want to like you, but you made me feel dissappointed. I’d give you a meh. There is a slight chance that I might return only just to try out your pho.

Pho Bo Ga Mekong Vietnam on Urbanspoon

Universal by Katherine


Universal is a restaurant in Lygon st which caters well for students of Melbourne University and RMIT. The RMIT Carlton campus is really close by.

It is an Italian place owned by Italians. Lygon st is full of Italian places which are authentic. It is a foodies destination.

The service was lovely and attentive. The guy did tell me right from the begining that they were having troubles with their “Pizza Oven”, which was fine by me as I wanted to have pasta with a hot drink (extra $1).

They have $10-$13 Lunch Specials weekdays which includes a cold drink or wine.  They also do cocktails.

The mocha was huge.

My vegetarian pasta was great. Small, but the main thing is that it tasted great. The pasta was al dente (not raw and not too overcooked- just right)

I also had a homemade canoli (Italian dessert). Really creamy. And I loved the strawberry on the side. What a perfect way to finish off the lunch.

Universal on Urbanspoon

Gigi by Katherine


Gigi is a sushi bar located on Swanston st in the city. It is where all the cheap student eateries are and is opened from 10am-11pm at night.
It was here that I walked past from the supermarket and decided to check it out.
At 11am it was really quiet and the waiter was a little surly. Perhaps just woke up?
I had the bento $12.50. It was with chirashi sushi, ginger, a piece of tofu, spring rolls and miso soup.
Loved the fish and the egg in the sushi. But I think it had a bit too much warm rice in there which I hate. It didn’t have a lot of fish in there which I would have loved

I didn’t really like the piece of tofu which I think its Agedashi tofu. It was the worst piece that I have ever had. It was cold and awful.
The miso soup was nice though. I loved the tofuy bits.

The white coffee came really late after a few polite reminders. It came halfway through my meal

All in all I might only be back only just to try the actual sushi itself. It did not look too bad and I could see them freshly preparing it when I arrived at 11am. Next time I shouldn’t come so early either.

Gigi Sushi Bar on Urbanspoon

Koko Black @Lygon st by Katherine


I went to the Koko black on Lygon st having high expectations of it. And the place did not disappoint. In fact it was heaven here.
And I was wowed by all the chocolate. Yummy.
Whilst I was there I got to try some caramel chocolate which was sweet and tasted like toffee. Apparently they do give out samples of chocolate to their customers and I was one of them.

The service was a tad bit slow and unattentitive. I did have to call the waiter a few times. Perhaps they were thinking about going home and not about the customer?

I checked out the bathrooms whilst I was there. It is behind a door and down a very small ramp.
I had the doughnut special( $12.50) with a Green tea ($5 for a pot was a bit pricey. But given that it was a Chanella brand _I forgave them).
The french doughnut (Beignets)  special sounded great and it was a wintry day so I felt like lots of comfort food. Here this special was really good. The doughnuts melted in the mouth like what they should. These were handmade.
The chocolate sauce= heavenly. I could easily hang here all day and night and watch them make chocolate and the world go by.
I loved the ice cream. It was very creamy but smooth.

Given the price I’d probably not visit as much as I’d like to. But I’d happily recommend the place to tourists and all Melburnians alike.

Koko Black on Urbanspoon

Dahon Tea lounge


This place is located in South Melbourne opposite the South Melbourne Market and is on the way to Melbourne Sports and Aquatics center.
A number of bloggers have written about this place and quite liked it, so I decided to check it out and meet up with the Japan club for their Sports day at 1:30pm.
The place is really welcoming and its run by Filipinos  I have never tried Filipino food before so was willing to give it a try.

For those that don’t like Filipino food there is also Western food. They do have a $10 Baguette, Chips and Soft drink special, but I was more interested to try their traditional dishes and teas.
They were so busy at lunchtime. They had two big groups to cater for hence the service was a little slow on the uptake. They have a few communual tables and I sat at one of them.
Whilst I was waiting I checked out the bathrooms. Dahon doesn’t have any specifically so I had to use the shopping centre’s one which are upstairs outside Spotlight. And boy were they filthy!
 And I think they forgot my cookie with the Green tea ($3.50 for one), but the Pancit was really good ($11.80). And so was the BBQ Skewer ($2).
Pancit is a Fillipino dish with Rice vermicelli and sauce with everything crushed and mixed inside. The tofu too was crushed and it was nice.
The only thing that I didn’t get to try was the Lumpia. Oh well next time when I come back I will try this and the desserts

Dahon Tea Lounge on Urbanspoon

The Oxford Scholar Hotel


The Oxford Scholar Hotel has been around for years and its liked by many students, workers and tourists alike.
It is just next to the new SAB building at RMIT and the RMIT students frequent it for lunch and drinks. Drinks here are not too bad and I didn’t buy them. Someone in the Japan club bought them for me. That and the chips ($7 per bowl).

The waitstaff here are sure lovely and polite. I loved the lady with the Kiwi accent serving us. She was lovely.
The chips were nicely done and I shall be back for the meals.

Oxford Scholar Hotel on Urbanspoon

Breakfast thieves by Katherine


This morning I headed north up to Bundoora West campus and along the way I decided to take a quick break.  The trip to Bundoora from the city is about one hour and the Breakfast thieves is just in Gore st, just parralel from Smith st. There are trams that run to and from the place.

The place is in an area where there are warehouses so it was hard to find. But once I saw the outdoor seating it was all good.  The place is sooo big and you can see the kitchen from where you are sitting. They get quite busy during the weekends so it is better to go during the weekdays if you can.  12 other bloggers have raved about this place.

It is also dog friendly and I got to pat a dog. Yay!!!

This place does fair trade coffee. Their coffee beans come from STREAT and it was the normal blend that I had today.  The coffee was winey and a little bit nutty. It was a $3.50 long black.

With that I had the Legend ($18). The legend was baked eggs with chorizo (I chose vegetarian by the way), some sort of cheese, rocket, mushrooms, capsicium, tomato and herbed bread. The bread was amazing and so was the baked eggs. It did take a while to make but the amazing goodness made up for it. Yum.
I struggled to finish this as it was way too filling so I suggest sharing it or asking for a small one.
I loved the spices in it, but if you are not someone that loves a lot of spicy food best not to order this as it has spices.

I’d come back with Sally and I’d love to see what Big Fil thought of it as he loves these sorts of places. People if you are visiting Melbourne this is worth checking out.

Breakfast Thieves on Urbanspoon

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