Thai food at any time of the day @ Boon Cafe

Cafe by day, thai street food style eatery restaurant by night. Located in “Thai Town” in the Haymarket end of Pitt Street, Boon Cafe is a winner in our books, especially for cheap eats.

The cafe has a good vibe to it and the decor is modern and has a market place vibe to it with exposed brick walls, a bicycle up on the wall and rustic flowers at each of the tables.

Inside the same building is an attached Asian grocer and fruit and veg market selling plenty of sauces, noodles, frozen foods and fresh items to cook with. The counter also has pre-prepared meals to purchase and take to work or home to reheat.

The cafe has a breakfast, lunch and dinner menu. At breakfast you can grab a western meal, pan-baked eggs or congee.

At lunch time, some of their sandwiches sounded brilliant – basically it’s the typical thai meals on a Sandwich! Wow, like chicken cashew sandwich, mushrooms and holy basil sandwich or a fried chicken and papaya salad burger. It’s gotta be seen and ordered for sure!

We were there for dinner. The food is described as Isaan cuisine (from Northern Thailand), with Som Dtum, grilled and fried dishes, warm salads and fish, and rice or noodles. We ordered the larb soon sen / spicy glass noodles and minced chicken. I asked for mild, and it unfortunately came out way too spicy. The waiter was observant enough to notice and offered to replace the dish with a new, and less spicy one. We appreciate this gesture.

Our favourite dish of the night was the Padt Mee Kha ti – like a pad thai, this one has stir fried thin rice noodles but with tamarind, tofu, coconut milk, garlic chives and shredded omelette. This was super tasty and we’d easily order it again.

If you’re just here for dessert, there’s pandan croissants, toast with house smoked chilli relish and dried shredded pork or condensed milk and milo to name a few. Combine this with a coffee or matcha latte, homemade iced tea or traditional thai coffee, and you’ve got yourself a great combo.

The food here is super tasty, and the menu items are actually inspired and interesting! Prices are extremely reasonable too, and for $6, an entree sized soup is amazing.

Boon Cafe

http://www.booncafe.com

425 Pitt St Haymarket 2000

Boon Cafe Eatery & Grocer Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sushi boats and more @ Umi Sushi and Bar, Haymarket

We were lucky enough to be asked to join some our fellow foodies for a banquet of Japanese food at Umi Sushi in Haymarket.

Umi Sushi have other locations in Darling Quarter and Town Hall.

The Haymarket store is super big with a bar to sit at, a range of smaller tables and also some private rooms that also have karaoke. It is conviently close to central station and also the capitol theatre for those theatre lovers amongst us. 

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We sat in a booth, ideal for the 6 of us in a quiet spot and the waiter served us a few cold Asahi’s, perfect to accompany our first course – an array of sushi and sashimi. This was served in a huge sushi boat, which would be suitable for a party so you can try a few things. It was filled with kingfish carpaccio, smoked Toro, and a few types of nigiri sushi – fois gras, scampi, Umi, salmon belly, kingfish as well as a purple soft shell crab roll. Our favourite was the toro (salmon belly).

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It also had two new dishes, their Umi chirashi waffle ice cream cones, filled with sashimi (salmon or tuna), avocado and topped with konbu cream and a lotus chip. What a cool idea!

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We then got a mix of hot and cold dishes in including Truffle cabbage, mentaiko omelette, grilled cheese scallops, grilled quail, mixed skewers and a wagyu steak platter.

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The final savoury dish was a soy milk broth hot pot which came with premium wagyu beef and a huge platter full of seafood and dry ice smoking from it for theatrics. We cooked this ourselves and mixed it all together while we waited.

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Ending on a dessert platter, we enjoyed some ice cream, matcha green tea cake and cheesecake. We were certainly satisfied by the end of this.

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We’d like to thank Rnb Diary for inviting us, as well as Washuko lovers.

Umi Sushi & Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

New menu @ Ho Jiak, Haymarket

The new menu at Ho Jiak pays homage to the truffle – evident in an Indomee appetiser where spicy stir fried instant noodles are served with a generous coating of buttermilk sauce topped with pungent rounds of fresh truffle. This dish alone is worth a visit to Ho Jiak this winter, but there is plenty more to tantalise the palate.

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We also loved the precisely stacked tower of stir fried chicken wings with a buttery salted egg yolk crumb and crispy fried curry leaves and chilli (Kiam Ah Nui Kay). A fruity Marlborough riesling is a great accompaniment to the spicy noodles and crispy chicken wing starters.

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The spice dial is turned up in a rendang, fragrant with lemongrass, tamarind and spices that showcases a crispy KFC chicken rather than your usual beef.

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The Kari Claypot is a creamy coconut curry with a bounty of vegetables and the catch of the day, which on our visit was barramundi; the large pieces of fish are beautifully complemented by eggplant, okra and cabbage.

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Nui Choay Cim is a luxurious dish of whole blue swimmer crab set in a delicately flavoured silky steamed egg custard made from century, duck and chicken egg.

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Whole lettuce cups are steamed and presented as a verdant vegetarian centrepiece surrounded by strategically placed sliced Chinese mushrooms with a garlic and oyster sauce (Sang Chye Hniau Kor). It’s a simple dish expertly executed to deliver maximum flavour with minimum ingredients.

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The sweet finale is a nod to “old” and “new” with a black glutinous rice porridge (Pulut Hitam) with small globes of sweet tropical longan fruit, served warm with a side of coconut milk and sticky palm sugar syrup representing a traditional Malay dessert.

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A Teh Tarik affogato cleverly introduces the flavours of a classic Malaysian pulled tea in a creamy housemade ice cream with a side of hot kopi (strong black coffee). It’s a delightful conclusion to a degustation meal that takes your tastebuds on a journey through the flavours of Nonya cooking. Traditional dishes are given a modern twist by Head Chef Junda Khoo delivering an overall exceptional dining experience.

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We’d like to thank Ho Jiak for the invitation to try their new menu.

Rob and Anita (eatwithmyfoodsafari) contributors

Ho Jiak is a top Malaysian Restaurant

Ho Jiak has long been in Strathfield but has now found a second home in the relatively new Haymarket location. Ho Jiak specialises in Nyonya (Chinese Malaysian Cuisine), which which we can only describe as flavour upon flavour and even more flavour! The food is inspired by the Chef’s Grandmothers home cooked meals with exotic ingredients making for a flavorful dining experience.
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The interior of the restaurant is set up into two dining spaces. The downstairs portion of the restaurant reflects how we picture the streets of Penang in Malaysia to look with plenty happening – there is a hawker style set up, with splashes of colour everywhere. Beautiful artworks adorn the walls. The upstairs section takes you into Grandma’s home, with some beautiful mosaic tiles imported from Malacca, some elegantly painted family portraits and family photos. There are also Malaysian antique crockery and cookware, adding to the authentic homely feel, it definitely feels like you are visiting someone’s home. The upstairs part is perfect for larger dining groups as well.
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Ho Jiak is a licensed venue, so you can enjoy a glass of wine, which the suggestion of Pinot Gris perfectly matched the food. We visited with foodie friends Spooning Australia and e.m.i.l.y_eats which afforded us to try many dishes on the menu. The starters were creative and moreish. The Pai tee was a big hit, with paper thin crisp pastry cups you can fill with a tasty topping, they also come with lettuce cups to make a type of san choy bao. If you want to try something a little different, try the loh bak which is pork jowl wrapped in bean curd and deep fried. It is damn tasty.
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We of course had to try some Malaysian favourites, what we know as comfort food including: the char kway teow, this is simple and delicious. This noodle dish could never disappoint. The Ho Jiak version is super tasty and had a good whack of chilli. Their indomee goreng with the inclusion of premium ingredients with the salted duck egg and crab meat elevating this dish to next level and the chilli also providing some heat.
Another display of premium ingredients is the wagyu portion of the menu, the Rendang Gu another traditional meal. This version was made with quality wagyu. This stew was popping with colour, full of flavour and the meat melt in your mouth.

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All of the items served were of a high standard, but there were some particular standouts. These included the Sam Wong Dan: a savoury custard made with a trio of egg; the century, duck and humble chicken egg. This dish had amazing flavour and silky texture and is a must order. The most suprising was the kangkung belachan. This is one for the vegetarians. The kiam ah nui squid, stirfried with salted duck egg yolk, butter and curry leaves was a flavour sensation and we would go back and undoubtedly order this. The Laksa is one of their signature dishes, and as to be expected was also very good, and be prepared – this is also hot.
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Desserts are inspired by Teh Tarik (pulled tea), or poured back and fourth between two jugs. This is the national drink of Malaysia  and is a mellow way to finish after a taste sensory overload from the preceding meal. To sooth the taste buds a teh tarik ice cream or teh tarik affogato made with the teh taic ice cream with kopi(coffee). Ho-Jiak also do a housemade teh tarik liqueur or a cognac hot chocolate to sip on, these options are great if you have gorged and are lacking capacity for dessert.
Ho Jiak is a top spot to get a Malaysian meal. The chef’s inspiration from his Malaysian upbringing evident in the setting. He is passionate about his restaurant and his cooking and this was inspirational to hear. The food is ridiculously good, using premium ingredients and traditional Malaysian flavour. It is at the top of our list for Malaysian food in Sydney. Make sure you pay it a visit.
92 Hay Street,
Haymarket, Sydney NSW

Ho Jiak Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato