Sir D and I headed to the Night Noodle Markets last night on the prowl for some yummy food. Having been there in previous years, we went early to avoid the horrendous crowds that build up through the night, and also to redeem our SMH subscriber free drinks vouchers from the SMH stand! We got there at exactly 5pm and had time to walk around all the stalls to see what was on offer before there were too many people.
The early bird catches the worm... people at the Noodle Markets at 5pmThere were all the usual Malaysian and Thai places selling noodles and curries as well as a few yum cha stalls selling dim sum. Notable newcomers included Din Tai Fung who were offering dumplings such as their famous pork soup dumplings (xiao long bao) and also some mini dessert buns like red bean.
Offerings at Jackie M
We decided to grab the char kway teow from Jackie M since we could see them frying each batch of noodles separately to order. The smell wafting from their stall was mouth-watering, and we could see that it was already drawing some early noodle-market goers to their stall.
Chicken Char Kway Teow - $12.00
Our freshly fried chicken char kway teow was bursting with flavours and textures from the soft noodles to the crunchy bean sprouts. I was a bit disappointed that it didn't have any lap cheong (chinese sausage) in it but the flavour of the noodles more than made up for it.
Big batches of Beef Bourguignon and Caramel Pork at La Mint
For dinner part 2, I had spied big batches of beef bourguignon at La Mint, and was keen to try it. It looked a bit watered down and flavourless, but it turned out to be surprisingly tasty! The beef and carrots were cooked until tender and we finished this up in no time. They also gave us a voucher to use at their restaurant to the value of $25 (minimum spend $50).
Beef Bourguignon a l'Indochinoise - $10.00
And finally, onto dessert - my favourite part of the night! With Gelato Messina new to the Night Noodle Markets scene and offering delicious sounding flavours like Thai Custard and Coconut and Lychee, it was a no brainer where we were getting our dessert from! We settled on getting their Night Noodle Market dessert which consisted of Thai Custard gelato and Mango Sorbet with warm black sticky rice.
The Thai Custard flavour was sweet and creamy from the coconut milk and palm sugar in the gelato, and the Mango Sorbet was a nice fresh contrast to the richness of the thai custard gelato. But the best part was without a doubt the treasure trove of black glutinous rice hidden underneath the scoops of ice cream. It wasn't that warm but it was definitely sticky and chewy and delicious! It was so good that I would face the crowds at the Noodle Markets again just to get my hands on this dessert!
Messina Night Noodle Market Dessert: Thai custard gelato served with mango sorbet and warm black sticky rice with coconut cream - $8.00
Discovering secret treasure.. black glutinous rice!
By now it was about 6.30pm, and the crowds were definitely building up. Sir D was craving an egg tart so we lined up at East Ocean to get one. They were also selling other dim sum items at $2 each, as well as salt and pepper calamari and various dinner boxes containing a sampler of dim sum.
Egg custard tart - $2.00
When we left there were hordes of people and almost all the tables were filled up either with people minding them or actually eating at them. I definitely recommend getting there as early as possible to avoid queues and to actually get a table to sit down and eat comfortably (especially when you're juggling 2 glasses of wine, dessert, and a camera!).
Crowds at 6.30pm
Be sure to grab your free Ferrero Rondnoir samples at the Ferrero Rondnoir truck, as well as a free Sydney Morning Herald bag containing a newspaper, Crave Sydney badges, a Ferrero Rondnoir and a sample of chilli flakes from the Sydney Morning Herald stall.
The Night Noodle Markets run from 12th-16th and 19th-23th October from 5pm-9.30pm as part of the Sydney International Food Festival