Thursday, October 18, 2012

Two nights left for Crave Night Noodle Markets

Crave Night Noodle Markets, Hyde Park, Sydney
The Night Noodle Markets are a quintessential Sydney event and one of my yearly traditions as part of the Crave Sydney International Food Festival.

Running for another two nights in Hyde Park north (near St James station) to conclude their extended run this year, the Noodle Markets continue to grow in size, taking over more and more of the park with new sponsor areas, more food stalls and more seating (with a variety of improved quality chair settings!).

Citibank VIP area
I think the growth of themed sponsor areas is a fantastic addition, with Citibank, Brown Brothers, Coopers and Rekordelig all taking advantage of the outdoor space. The Noodle Lounge by Chinta Ria is also a good addition for those not up for the queues and seat hunting.

Eat Art Truck at the Night Noodle Markets
Two food trucks also made an appearance - the shiny red bus of Agape and arty Eat Art Truck - the latter which had run out of their amazing shichimi chicken wings just as I walked past.

Chat Thai stall
An easy favourite of the Noodle Markets is Chat Thai; their dual stall handling the crowds and queues much better than the likes of Mamak and Din Tai Fung - also perennial crowd favourites.

Mu bhing and sticky rice from Chat Thai
The mu bhing grilled pork skewers are easily my favourite dish of the night. Served with a sweet and lightly spicy dipping sauce, the pork was charred for a caramelly exterior and had a tender chew that was perfect with a ball of sticky rice - eaten with the fingers, of course.

Fresh young coconut juice from Chat Thai
Even on a cooler evening, a thirst-quenching fresh young coconut is irresistible, especially when the gelatinous inner flesh has already been shaved off the sides, ready for immediate consumption.

Som tum from Chat Thai
We're also gifted with a som tum green papaya salad from Amy Chanta of Chat Thai. Knowing all too well the Thai chilli heat scale ('medium' blows my head off), we elected a "not very spicy" version, bashed out fresh and to order from a huge mortar and pestle.

The papaya shreds, green beans, peanuts and cherry tomatoes form a refreshing, yet still spicy salad, with thanks to a fresh, red birdseye chilli. The sticky rice also worked well to temper the heat of the som tum.

Barbequed corn from Kinn Dining
I'd not heard of Kinn Dining before but was keen to sample their wares which had a modern Thai feel to it; although not so much the barbequed corn with butter.

Soft shell crab and chicken satay from Kinn Dining
The soft shell crab had unfortunately cooled by the time I returned to our patch of grass, although the flavours were fabulous and the batter stayed very crisp. It was even nicer dipped into the leftover dressing of Chat Thai's som tum.

Kinn Dining also had some of the most generously-sized chicken satay I've ever seen - huge cuts of chicken breast that made the bamboo skewers bend under its weight. These were served with a creamy, coconut-ty satay sauce, in the same dish as the soft shell crab for my carrying convenience.

One of The Morrison bars
The Brown Brothers bean bag seats looked incredibly comfortable in front of The Morrison bar. I was just a little envious as I sat on the grass sipping an icy cold Coopers Pale Ale.

Roti making at Mamak Village
Leaving space for another annual tradition - the mango with sticky rice dessert at Chat Thai - we ventured to the southern end of the Noodle Markets where there were a few new and interesting faces.

It was impossible to not join the queue at Mamak Village, watching the incredible roti making show. How the roti chef flings and swings the uber-thin dough, even boomerang-ing the round flat dough in the air, is a wonder.

However, the end result roti canai and curry sauce weren't the best I've tried while the airy otak otak fish cake was singular and minute.

Food stalls at Night Noodle Markets

Rekordelig Cider Bar

Crave Night Noodle Markets
So, you've got two more nights to mosey on down to the Night Noodle Markets for 2012. Indeed, a second or third visit might be in order too. See more photos of the Crave Night Noodle Markets 2012 at my Facebook page.


joey@FoodiePop said...

Only two nights left (well, one now)? Boy does time fly! It's been huge this year and seems to be getting bigger and better. Congrats Sydney!

FFV * said...

I have been meaning to mosey on down there but it is always overflowing people!
Enjoyed your review & now it feels like I've been haha*


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