Hem 27 Vietnamese @ Showgrounds @ Thursday, May 18, 2017
Sunday 30th April
When traveling for work we like to make the most of the trip and dine locally and so this week's journey was to the race course up north. The most popular choice for dinner was laksa but we've been there so instead went for another top 5?
Hem27 Vietnamese. Located on the block in front of coles it's a deceptively small front with plenty of seats that extend towards the back. This is the area of shops right before Showground on the same side.
$17+ stirfry this place is more expensive than your average minimal deco Vietnamese place. We picked it because it looks cleaner than the average too, with Vietnamese the nicer it looks the more expensive it is.
“Hem” means alleyway in Vietnamese and especially in Saigon, most of the local favourites dishes are found in narrow alleyways, like laneways here I suppose? Vietnamese street hawker’s food is what Hem27 serves.
The main seating area, when we left. It was almost full during service. Arriving as one person we were sent to the loners lane, the hallway. You can face the fridge or towards the back.
Wonton Soup $6
Starting with a soup, there were four wontons, I love mom's version but she's not here and I can barely cool. These wontons were plain though the broth was good, they aren't authentic.
Fine Net Seafood Spring Rolls with Fine Rice Vermicelli $12
A platter! To be eaten leaf cup style, watch out for the fish sauce running down your arms!
There were enough cups for all but the last three spring rolls.
The spring rolls themselves were crispy and held their own light. I've never had these before, lightly seasoned they weren't too salty nor did I encounter an unwanted pepper! I do prefer normal spring rolls actually. You don't actual need fish sauce for the spring rolls, but rather the vermicelli.
The verdict? Delicious and I'm falling at a fast and steady rate into a food coma after these two dishes. At $12 this is standard pricing which I'm very pleased with, as these could go for $14-16 with the deco of this place.
Sweet Steamed Rice Cake (BÁNH BÒ) $6
Made from rice flour with a slight aroma of coconut served with coconut cream
What they didn't say was that this dessert is designed for 2-3 people! It's a spongy but not cake cake thing, made of rice flour. It's like lola's white cake in Hawaii. I like it! It's a bit sweet and sour, dipped into a creamy coconut cream, all that was missing was some sesame seeds!
Where we were seated.
Service? They do take card. Service was good though a bit lost in translation when I ordered off the menu (that vermicelli in my main, a different type was paired with the spring rolls, though I asked for a different noodle). Foreign but friendly.
Their website is great, minus the lack of a pdf menu download, very easy to use with a full menu. Most Vietnamese places don't do this.
Will we be back? Sure, if we're in the area.
Where do you go for Vietnamese?
Hi. I'm Charlie. Capricorn. ISFJ. An Events Planner. An American, San Franciscan in Melbourne.
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