This time next week Melbourne will be hosting its first Night Noodle Markets on the banks of the Yarra River. It’s a little hard to promote something that I have never been to; however the thought of this event is making me very excited. It sounds like a dating Mecca of food stalls, food trucks, bars and live music (basically all the makings for a memorable date).
From November Monday 18 – Sunday 30, the Alexander Gardens (behind the rowing sheds on the Yarra) will be transformed into an Asian hawker food market extravaganza. This market will be bringing out the very best in Melbourne’s thriving Asian food culture with restaurants like Chin Chin and Longrain holding stalls alongside places like Mamak, Wonderbao and my favourite dumpling house, Dumplings Plus.
There will also be a convoy of food trucks joining the party, with Lil Nom Noms, Banh Mi Boys and Let’s Do Yum Cha. Throw a few bars, DJs and the fact that you are doing all this in one of Melbourne’s best garden areas and you’ve got yourself a cracking date.
I would suggest though maybe giving the first few nights a miss as I’m forecasting long queues. I will sacrifice myself for my readers and head there on Monday night to give a more in depth post of what to expect. If the Sydney Night Noodle Markets are anything to go by then we are all in for a treat.
Something to whet the appetite;
Aangan: Assorted Indian breads; roti rolls and wraps; kebabs; fried snacks. Autorickshaw: Indian butter chicken and saffron rice; masala chai; aloo tiki chat; naan. Banh Mi Boys: Bun noodle salad, bangin’ banh mi baguette, blue cod ceviche.
Burwood Teppanyaki House: Yakitori (chicken/calamari/beef/prawn) skewers; okonomi-yaki; Japanese soft drinks.
Chin Chin: Pad see ew; tom yum poached prawns and Vietnamese coleslaw; pork and peanut curry; chilli-caramel popcorn.
Dumpling and Biriyani Rice Hut: Momo dumplings, free range chicken biriyani.
Dumplings Plus: Pan-fried, steamed and deep-fried dumplings.
Gelato Messina: Gelati, sorbets, and sundaes like Singapore Sling.
Ghost Kitchen: Spring onion pancake with optional egg, pork floss, or the lot; gua bao; Taiwanese sausage; salt-and-pepper chicken.
Grilled Calamari: Malaysian-Indonesian calamari skewers.
Hoy Pinoy: Barbecue chicken in traditional Filipino glaze; longganisa (skewered pork sausage); pork belly and banana ketchup glaze.
I Love Pho: Beef, chicken or vegetable pho; Vietnamese coleslaw, salads; lemongrass beef or pork buns; spring rolls/rice-paper rolls.
Izakaya Den: Den fried chicken; Hihou Dog; nama udon noodles with wagyu beef or tofu and wakame.
Le Bangkok: Pad Thai; pawpaw salad; fish cakes; deep-fried pork with sticky rice; golden crispy morning glory salad.
Let’s Do Yum Cha: Barbecue pork bun; pork or chicken dim sim; vegetarian dumpling; vegetarian spring roll; prawn and chive dumplings; prawn gow gee.
Lil Nom Noms: Steamed bao; banh mi slider; bun cha (rice noodle salad).
Longrain: Grilled chicken, rice noodles, coriander, yellow bean; hot-and-sour salad of pork and glass noodles, peanuts, mint and coriander; yellow curry of cauliflower, pumpkin, mustard greens and chilli
Mamak: Roti chanai; satay chicken; mee goreng.
Mini Pancakes: Mini pancakes; fresh young drinking coconuts; lemon-mint crush.
Mr Huang Jin: Pork and ginger steamed xiao long bao; pan-fried chicken and lemongrass dumplings; Taiwanese fried chicken.
Paperboy Kitchen: Chicken Vietnamese noodle salad; egg and smoked tomato noodle salad; grilled salmon noodle salad.
Pho Saigon Star: Hokkien noodle salad, Vietnamese pancakes, Viet skewers and salad.
Sambal Kampung: Fish fillet with spicy sauce; pan-fried dumplings; calamari with spicy sauce; pan-fried rice pudding.
Shallot Thai: Pad Thai; pad mee; pad see ew.
Serendipity Icecream: Assorted ice-creams.
Spanthai: Seafood saffron rice; chicken panang curry; chicken pad Thai; vegetable pad see ew; prawn fried rice; Hokkien noodles.
Thanh Phong: Vietnamese beef wrapped in betel leaf; rice-paper roll; salt squid; meatball skewers.
Wonderbao: Roast pork belly gua bao; choi bao; pork bao; chicken bao.
Drinks: There will be four bars pouring Coopers beer, Rekorderlig cider, Tanqueray gin and Yalumba wines. The only things to BYO are friends and an appetite.