The last time I went to the Noodle Markets was probably 3 years ago, before the time of Messina, pork buns, and the oh so raved about ramen burger.
We got there around 6:30 and it was already crazy packed. Completely unexpected considering it was a Tuesday and the markets have been open for over a week now. The power of food, am I right?
The markets have a great atmosphere and you can tell the organisers have put in a lot of effort. There’s a section with overhanging lanterns, a table tennis set up, beer and cider gardens, and a whole lot of tables for the weary glutton.
Because deciding what to eat is really hard work, I made the executive decision that we should eat fried chicken as we walked, which was fortuitous, since I was thinking of fried chicken all day.
Best snack – karaage chicken with japanese mayo and a squeeze of lemon.
I think the best strategy is to get in the long lines early, so you can get your food and eat it at an acceptable hour. In keeping with this, we lined up at the ramen/rice burger stall – where the wait was maybe 20 or so minutes that early in the night.
The pork was melt-in-the mouth, seasoned to perfection, with some raw onion and lettuce as accompaniment. On the side is some watermelon and some salad, which cuts the richness quite nicely. My main criticism is that while the ramen ‘bun’ is a novelty, it is quite heavy and stodgy, such that it overwhelms the meat. The noodles also fall apart fairly easily, making it difficult to eat.
Not the prettiest thing to look at, but I liked it a lot more than the ramen burger. The bun is of course made up of a cake of japanese rice, already seasoned with a possible mixture of tomato and soy. The rice is crispy (might be too hard for some, but I liked it), and the chicken complemented the rice perfectly.
Didn’t try this one, but the opinion was that the other fillings were better than the beef patty.
Our next choice – skewers from Melbourne based, Hoy Pinoy – also came with a massive line, even longer than the line for the ramen burger. We waited for over 30min, but it was definitely worth it.
And this is only part of it – it was a non stop, well oiled machine. Choices are between chicken and pork belly, covered in a sticky-sweet glaze.
All I can say is that these were THE BOMB. They were tender, and succulent, with an amazing charred flavour. Damn the Filipinos know their way around a skewer.
Last but not least, and of course is Messina! They had 4 flavours on offer ($9 each), and of course we had to try all of them. Though, really not the best idea having finished a pretty big meal.
This was my least favourite of the bunch, but it was very refreshing, and had a lot of tropical flavours. Though, I’m not a fan of the mousse element – it’s such a strange texture to have while eating ice cream.
Too much peanut for me – but it had a good mix of the soft, crunchy, and chewy elements This one was the richest. The brownie at the bottom was more similar to a chewy cookie texture.
This was really nice – the mango puree added a strong flavour, stopping the combination from being too subtle, especially compared to the other desserts.
My fav! Can’t go wrong with coffee gelato, especially if it’s paired with a heady cinnamon scroll – the combination was perfect.
The only problem with getting all 4 at once, is that they all start tasting the same / get overpowered by others.
Overall, a super fun night, full of laughs and food. I was definitely rolling home.
The night noodle market are on until the 26th, so you better visit if you haven’t had a chance :)
Night Noodle Markets (as part of Good Food Month)
Hyde Park North, Sydney