Bistro Mekong – Castlecrag, Sydney
Review by Lucy Collins
*Images courtesy of Bistro Mekong/additional images Lucy Collins
We arrived on the early side at Bistro Mekong in anticipation of our Sunday evening meal, greeted with a smile which is always a promising start!
The menu offered plenty of options: ten different entrees and twenty-one different mains. With this kind of choice, it was easy to find something to satisfy.
The Grilled Scallop with fresh coconut was the first dish to arrive. The scallops were fresh and tender and looked tantalising on their shells. With a hint of char-grilled smokiness and a zingy dressing, we were excited about the meal to follow.
The Pad Thai with chicken arrived with large succulent prawns on top. The plate was piled with piquant soft noodles – crunchy bean shoots brought a textural delight to each mouthful, and there was exactly the right amount of tofu, peanut and chilli.
Glistening char-grilled melt-in-the-mouth Stir-fried Eggplant with tofu could easily become my must-have weekly take-away. The eggplant was prepared to perfection – cooked through yet still firm – and the basil and chilli brought a flavour explosion.
The Laos salad was a zesty tumble of crispy rice curry salad, sour pork, mint, coriander, chilli and thinly shaved red onion – just as the menu described.
Tellurian rose and Moda sparkling water provided ideal beverage accompaniments for our chosen dishes.
Service was prompt and helpful and the timing was faultless. Bistro Mekong is a cracker of a local.
**Lucy is a Sydney based writer for The Australia Times Gourmet News. She was a guest of Bistro Mekong/Cardinal Spin PR – Matt Fraser (This is an independent account of her dining experience)
ADDITIONAL INFORMATION – Courtesy of Bistro Mekong/Cardinal Spin PR – Matt Fraser
The very best of Chippendale’s Kensington Street has headed over the bridge to the re-vamped Quadrangle Shopping Village in Castlecrag. Bistro Mekong, a modern Asian diner and sister restaurant to Kensington Street’s Mekong restaurant, has reworked the concept to suit a new alfresco location and the feel of this vibrant suburb.
Headed by Kensington Street’s resident heartthrob, Chef Tiw Rakarin, Bistro Mekong promises to continue showcasing the best of Indochine cuisine, but with a twist. The new outdoor location offers an unbeatable alfresco dining experience, boasting a relaxed, romantic atmosphere with a trendy outdoor courtyard, flanked by hedges of lush greenery and dishes designed for sharing – Bistro Mekong is the perfect spot for a no-stress date night or casual, flavour-filled family dinner.
Inspired by the countries along the Mekong River – Cambodia, Laos, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam – Bistro Mekong is a travelling feast on a river cruise through the Mekong, sampling all the flavours on offer along the way. With an updated, mouth-watering menu on offer, there are a host of delicious new additions, old favourites, as well as options for vegetarians and family friendly dishes, everyone can enjoy the variety and spice of Bistro Mekong’s unique Indochine cuisine.
Seafood lovers will be in luck with the restaurant’s signature dish of Royal Amok Curry featuring prawns, scallops, pipis and barramundi tossed through a rich, red curry sauce; or grab a shared plate of steamed barramundi, cooked to perfection with drizzles of herbs and green chili dressing.
Those in the mood for bold flavours and fresh hearty servings can chow down on a sensational Cambodian beef curry with mashed sweet potatoes, pickled ginger and homemade roti; Thai barbeque chicken with turmeric, lemongrass, a Southern Thai curry, watercress and coconut salad; or a plate of stir fry with crispy chicken, chili, cashews, onion and Kaffir lime.
Bistro Mekong is a casual dining experience and offers up plenty of kid friendly fare. Keep the kids quite with pork and prawn dumplings; egg fried rice served with Chinese greens; or some Vietnamese fresh spring rolls with vermicelli noodles. Both the egg fried rice and Vietnamese spring roll dishes are available with either chicken, pork or tofu options.
The Indochine flavours continue onto the drinks menu, with alcoholic and non-alcoholic concoctions specially designed by Sydney’s celebrated mixologist, Grant Collins. Sip on the rich Smoke & Spice Margarita which contains 5 spiced gold tequila, Cointreau, house spice syrup, fresh pressed citrus, smoked spiced rim; for something with more kick the Mekong Cooler is made using dark rum, Madagascar vanilla syrup, Szechuan chilli, ginger and apple.
“So many Australians love travelling around Asia,” said Founder of Chippendale’s Kensington Street and Bistro Mekong owner Dr. Stanley Quek, “By bringing Mekong to Castlecrag, I’m hoping to encourage Australians to challenge their tastebuds and try new cuisines. Castlecrag is like a little oasis – relaxed and sophisticated, at the same time. It fitted with our vision for Bistro Mekong perfectly, and I think will be a wonderful addition to the neighbourhood’s budding food scene.”
“Castlecrag is a wonderfully picturesque suburb so we’re hoping to call attention to the area with what we’re bringing to the Quadrangle. We’re planning on holding a regional dinner series once a month and looking at some sort of weekly dinner special that will really appeal to families. There will be a lot on offer,” said Dr Quek.
Bistro Mekong is open Tuesday – Sunday, all day breakfast from 8:30am| Lunch 11:30am – 3:30pm | Dinner 5:30pm – 9:30pm
The Australia Times News
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