A little dash of Madame Hanoi

After a very stressful week of presentations, hand ins and editing, it was time for some down time, a much need girly catch up and a whole lot of people watching.

Every week in the morning as I head off to University, I would arrive at the train station and walk out towards and along North Terrace (a busy main road that runs through the CBD) and when my day has ended I take the same route back, and each time my eye would always fix on one of the new restaurants that had pop up long the train station. I would always look in but never ventured inside, until now. let me introduce you to Madame Hanoi.

After meeting up with my Sister and Cousin at the train station, we headed on up the stairs, out the station entrance and after a 10 second walk we ventured in. Madame Hanoi is part of the high end dining experiences at the Casino, which happens to be located right on top of the train station.

Once you walk in your a immediately greeted by a beautiful wall painting of cherry blossoms, flowers and the leading lady Madame Hanoi. The front part of the restaurant is small, but open, and they have a bar section further in the back and extra dining up the top.

Madame Hanoi a French-Vietnamese Espresso Bar & Bistro. Specializing in french pastries and dessert, and Vietnamese inspired food.

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We sat ourselves down and started looking through the menu. Our kind waiter went through some of the most popular dishes, and recommended the la lot ca song, which is raw kingfish, nam jim, green mango, peanut and mint, and their famous canh ga chien nuoc mam, crispy chicken wings, fish sauce, red chilli and mint.

And like many Asian restaurants and bistros the aim is to share the love, and so we went with five dishes to share and compete over.

First one off the ranks, we went with the  la lot ca song – raw kingfish, nam jim, green mango, peanut and mint

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This was super good, really fresh, the mint was a great addition, I could’ve had the whole plate to myself, but alas no.

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Then came the banh cua lot – soft shell crab, brioche, coriander, chilli lime mayonnaise

Unfortunately we didn’t order enough of this one, but the bread was super soft and gave a delicacy to the dish.  It was small, but we manage to split it equally, I’ve always wanted to know how to make soft shell crab.

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My first experience of soft shell crab was actually with my boyfriend on our first date, at first I didn’t know you could eat the entire thing, how so convenient. No mess no fuss.

The restaurant wasn’t too busy during our visit, and even though you could see many people passing by, it was nice being tuck away from the loud street. We talk about wedding preparations and bridesmaids hair and makeup , my lovely cousin is to be married in December, let just say, she is a anxious bride to be, but a excited one.

We were happily interrupted by the third dish.

goi vit – crispy confit duck, watermelon, vietnamese mint and hoisin

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This fresh salad hit the right spot. I’ve never been a huge fan of salads, I think its just my distaste for ice berg lettuce and the lack of meat in some, but herb salads with Duck is something I won’t turn down.

The Duck was so full of flavour that at the end of the meal, we were trying to finish it and not let it go to waste, despite being quite full.

The fourth dish came to the delight of our eyes.

banh bao heo quay – crispy pork belly, green papaya, pickled cucumber and roasted peanuts

If you haven’t had banh bao, do go out and try, the buns are so soft and the fillings always have such good flavour, by the time you finish the first one, you would be wishing you had order some more.

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What can I say about these, they were heaven, I was a bit of a messy eater, so mine was falling apart a little, but no matter, I finished it clean.

Then came the final dish, the mighty chicken wings, this I will have to say is probably the best chicken wings I have had to this date. Ugghh and as much as it kills me to say, it is better then my golden boy chicken wings. These were too good, well played Madame Hanoi.

canh ga chien nuoc mam – crispy chicken wings, fish sauce, red chilli and mint

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I would say we definitely finished on a high. Our bellies were well full, and as I mentioned before, we kept on going, finishing the last of the duck salad.

It was so nice catching up with family in a nice setting, with good food. The staff were very friendly and wanted to know if dessert was on our minds. But we were too full to consider some, however maybe next time. We stayed for a little while longer to rest ourselves, and then we pack up and headed on out.

Madame Hanoi is located on North Terrace, Adelaide, and is in collaboration with the Casino, so you won’t miss it. Also they do a very good high tea experience, with macaroons, the soft shell crabs and other juicy pastries. I reckon this will be going on my to do list.

Hope you enjoyed this blog. Xin chào.

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