Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Mama's Bưởi.
The team behind Vietnamese food success story, Rolld have just launched a new restaurant concept Mama's Bưởi. A welcomed addition to Melbourne’s culinary scene, Mama's Bưởi adds an innovative and premium Vietnamese offering.
Located in Postal Lane (the little laneway off Little Bourke Street), Mama's Bưởi exudes informality, with the large airy space accented by rustic, urban finishes – such as a range of neon signs, hanging plants, festoon lighting and a collection of retro photographs. It is, in an easy-going sort of way, a typically Melbourne restaurant.
In line with its social setting, the menu items are primarily designed for sharing, with dishes divided into user friendly sections. The menu is abundant with options and features authentic, fresh and flavoursome dishes which descent from traditional Vietnamese recipes passed down generations ago and are served with an urban twist.
We loved the contemporary Vietnamese cuisine which was executed with flair and a respectful understanding - a compelling combination for the three new Mama's Bưởis restaurants opening in Crows Nest, Surry Hills and GPO Melbourne in late August/ early September.
The Mama's Bưởi logo is from the hand of Papa Hoang, father of co-founder Bao Hoang. Hoang family photographs line the walls and signature recipes are from Mama Ly, mother of co-founder Tin Ly, and Mama Phien Hoang.
A comprehensive list of cocktails, beers and wine are also on offer to complement the food offering.
Upper Left: Miss Saigon cocktail
Upper Right: Homemade pork and chicken liver pate served with pickled vegetables and crunchy sesame crackers
Bottom: Crisp fried whole school prawns served with a lemon, pepper and lime dipping sauce
The crisp fried whole school prawns were amazing. The deep fried crustacean pieces were coated in thin crisp batter that encapsulated firm, sweet flesh. With a myriad of spices, it was simply superb.
“Chef’s special” - amuse bouche of coriander and tofu salad with citrus dressing on betel leaf
The dish of the night, the amuse bouche of coriander and tofu salad with citrus dressing on betel leaf showcased a multitude of intense flavours and was highlighted by the gentle tartness of the citrus dressing. The medley of aromatic and acidic ingredients was an enjoyable prelude to the substantive dishes to come.
Smokey eggplant wok tossed in a chilli, garlic and basil sauce
The eggplant was thoroughly enjoyable. It was a well-conceived dish that took full advantage of the eggplant’s most notable characteristic – its supple flesh. The thick pieces of eggplant were encrusted with a chilli, garlic and basil sauce that was beautifully caramelised.
Caramelised pork belly and boiled free-range eggs slow braised in a sweet coconut juice
The Braised Pork Belly was comfort food at its best. The unctuous pieces of pork were creamy and melted in our mouths.
Steamed barramundi fillet dressed with shaoxing wine, ginger and hot sesame oil
The barramundi was fresh, well cooked and had a pleasant and subtle flavour, allowing the natural sweetness of the fish to be enjoyed.
“Chef’s special” - green tea smoked duck served on a bed of crisp salad dressed in nuoc mam
The green tea smoked duck had us fighting for the last morsel. The salad was a lovely accompaniment to the velvety duck flesh. Fresh, vibrant and crisp, the salad provided acidity and texture.
Mixed board of mama’s favourite desserts
An assortment of Vietnamese-inspired desserts concluded our evening. There was a sticky pineapple caramel cassava cake with coconut lime sorbet, coconut and lime panna cotta and banh ran doughnuts. Each of the desserts was a welcome departure from the mundane and offered its own unique characteristics – from the enjoyable crispy sesame seeded exterior of the banh ran doughnuts which were stuffed with delightful red bean jam to the smooth, rich consistency of the coconut and lime panna cotta, to the vibrant flavours of the coconut lime sorbet to the classic flavour combination of sticky pineapple and caramel delivered by the cassava cake.
Mama's Bưởi offers a compelling proposition for casual dining in the city with offerings that are tasty, fresh and impactful. Delivering high quality Vietnamese hawker and home-inspired cuisine, Mama's Bưởi is set to capture Melbourne’s heart.