|Wonderbao's pride: the gua baos.|
Lots of lanterns.
I know the post is probably a tad bit late, but Night Noodle Markets in back and it's literally bigger than ever. And more crowded than ever too, apparently. Between big assignments and food poisoning (not fun, believe me), I barely have time to put my feet up and having intimate moment with a bowl of ice cream, let alone visiting this great event too often. I did go twoce though, before things got too hectic and ugly in my life.
I'll let the pictures talk once again, but look out for the red, bold names because they are my absolute highlights and favourites of this year's NNM.
|Red lanterns. Lots of them. So great for selfies.|
Hoy Pinoy is a new contributor this year, comes all the way from Melbourne. This MUST be one of your priorities as soon as you touch down the park. The pork belly skewers are one of the bests I've tried during my visits; tender and succulent with lip-smacking, tasty marinade. And I was also informed that the marinade involves some banana ketchup. Banana ketchup!
|Hoy Pinoy: pork belly skewers ($10 for 2) with rice and unripe papaya/atchora ($3)|
The chicken inasals are not inferior either; juicy, boneless chicken chunks with sticky, sweet marinade that will make you seriously consider whether or not you should spend the next $50 on these skewers alone.
|Hoy Pinoy: chicken inasal - $10 for 2|
|Wonderbao stall. Finally we meet!|
Did somebody say they've seen too many of these in social medias lately? I don't know what you're talking aBAOt.
Wonderbao, another visitor from Melbourne, is one of the main reasons I have such high determination to visit NNM this year. They offer the gua baos and normal, closed buns, but we settled happily with the gua baos alone.
|Eat ALL the baos!|
Two of the baos have pork belly, and my preference goes to the braised pork belly with pickled mustard leaves, coriander, and crushed peanuts. Oh that tender pork belly, with crunchy and tangy mustard leaves and some sprinkles of crushed peanuts; too amazing for words. The fried tofu is surprisingly remarkable as well with crispy skin and silky innards. The buns themselves are pillowy soft.
|Wonderbao gua baos - $20 for 3|
Jackie M's char kway teow is another must-try. It's rather fiery and the wok hei is profound with some lovely charred edges here and there. I wish I wasn't sharing this. Best CKT I've had, hands down.
|Jackie M's char kway teow - $18|
|How pretty are these?|
I've been meaning to try Harajuku Gyoza but never got the chance. When I saw the name on the attendance list, I made sure to get everything on the menu. Our best choice is the chicken kaarage; juicy and tender chunks of lightly battered chicken with some aioli. Lots of adoration is poured more onto the moist pork gyoza; perfectly pan fried. The salted caramel gyoza serves well as a light dessert with warm, oozy salted caramel inside the fried jacket.
|Harajuku Gyoza: (clockwise) chicken karaage, pork gyoza, salted caramel gyoza with ice cream, duck gyoza|
|Bao Stop's stall: bao making action.|
|Bao Stop's baos: fried chicken gua bao (would be much better with some more moisture on the chicken) and braised pork belly gua bao (winner between the two; tender pork belly with perfect amount of fat layer and great condiments) - $7.5 ea|
|XLB making action at New Shanghai stall.|
Have you had your Messina today?
Gelato Messina's Lucky Fortune Bar with their epic pot luck creations is beyond popular with sweettooth and non-sweettooth alike. Come late and find yourself across the park lining up for one of their creative products.
I came the second time just for this and really, no regrets. This one's Street Hawker: lime & chocolate brownie, peanut gelato, coconut & caramel jam, fortune cookie clusters, and a giant peanut cookie.
While the peanut gelato is as unbelievably awesome as usual, and all the cookies give great texture contrast, I find that eating the whole thing can be quite a struggle for a person. There's so many things happening in the cup!
|Gelato Messina's Lucky Fortune Bar: Street Hawker - $9|
|Let's Go Yumcha: chicken siumays, har gaos, vegetarian dumpling ($10 for 5)|
|Because I like stalking other people's food.|
|Jackie M's roti canai. Looks great.|
|Korean potato on a stick. Crowd pleaser, as per usual.|
|Panda lantern on the entry.|
|And the neko (lucky) cat that cannot be missed!|
I barely scratched the surface of the event and honestly, there are so many things I wanna try there. Let's see if I can make another visit before it's gone for another year!
A tip: come early. They start at 4 on weekdays and 5 on weekends, and it would be super beneficial if you can come even earlier than that. Go straight to the stalls that may develop crazy queue soon enough. Some of the food has huge novelty factors but hey, it's an annual event, surely we can all have some fun with some rice burgers and pad thai hot dogs, right?
At least go pay Wonderbao a visit before 26th October!
P. S. Check Michael's (I'm Still Hungry) unbelievably detailed and borderline fanatical post of NNM here. You'll be drooling all over your keyboard.
Currency: $1 = IDR 11,000
NIGHT NOODLE MARKETS 2014
Sydney, NSW 2000
Good Food Month 2014
Night Noodle Markets 2014