Hao Phong - Flies in the Kitchen @ Friday, August 26, 2016
Prologue - I see and smell all. And so if my career were to fail I have a backup plan to become a food safety inspector, a role I shall take very seriously with my white cotton gloves and a magi-fine glass in hand.
After being cyber attacked after our last adventure out west I don't think we'll be venturing into that part of town for a while. So we stuck to the main streets and cravings for spring rolls were fulfilled.
Dinner this week was at Hao Phong, on the main street. Almost full at 7.30pm, only two tables left. Bookings for groups, couples and a few singles. Service we observed varies, do you speak their language? Yes I do! Only enough to order though :P
Note to self - You never need a three course meal on your own, only get a main and maybe drink. Also my rule on drinks is only to order if there's something unique e.g. three color drinks, horchata and mango lassi.
Spring Rolls (Prawns/Veg) $8
Starting off we had spring rolls, best shared. Whoops. Prawn cigars and vegetarian. Wrapped in lettuce with thai basil and mint. Could we get sour carrot I love too?
My biggest concern with eating Chinese/Vietnamese food (actually any restaurant not ran by the majority) is hygiene. Not lack of atmosphere. There are places where you can pay twice as much for that.
There was a leg in the fish sauce!!! Don't tell me it's a herb! I see a joint and two hairy parts of a fly's leg. You could say my appetite plummeted after that. Did I mention I had some of the sauce BEFORE I saw the leg?
If this is the leg, then where is the rest of the fly?!!
Udon-ish Noddles with Seafood $12
Seafood banh canh for mains, seafood mix from the supermarket, fish cake/balls noodles, big white ones, carrot and broccoli topped with spring onion and caramelized onions.
I've never had noodles like this, and so would describe them as udon-ish but wiki says... "Bánh canh (literally "soup cake") is a thick Vietnamese noodle that can be made from tapioca flour or a mixture of rice and tapioca flour."
The broth was good, not too salty and perfect for winter. The carrots and brocolli were weird though, westernized says jas. More than 75% of the diners were white. Ontop of looking out of place they were raw... in a cooked dish I'd expected them to be cooked.
The serving size was very generous, you could serve it between two.
Banana Rice & Ice Cream $5
Banana rice and basic vanilla ice cream for dessert, no points for presentation. A red banana encased in sticky rice, on the very small side.
Cheap generous mains, the spring rolls were good too, we liked the vegetarian ones. Skip dessert. Why aren't there many Vietnamese desserts? I've seen the sweet dessert soups in bakeries and asian grocery shops, but not restaurants?
Service was good, though of course varies on who you get. Also not all of them speak English.
Will we be back? No because of the fly's leg in my sauce!
On the way to the station we saw a bus full of asian tourists pilling into the bbq restaurant. Secret hotel? Because they bought ALL their luggage with them. And there were a lot of them. Both people and luggage.
I came across this "Salmonella scare: Footscray's Hao Phong restaurant shut down (Jan 2014)" I probably include in my research along with reviews is if that place has had any health/hygiene issues.
Hi. I'm Charlie. Capricorn. ISFJ. An Events Planner. An American, San Franciscan in Melbourne.
This is a blog about food, events, desserts, hot chocolate & cupcakes, shopping, and the occasional beauty product review in between. A lifestyle blog by an American in Melbourne.
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