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In the spirit of trying more restaurants that are closer to home, or in this case closer to J’s home, we decided to swap our usual Friday night city dining date for a restaurant in Point Cook and with Mamma J coming along. In the mood for some Asian, we had two options: Cyclo de Saigon or Cocochine. Both restaurants were super busy, but by default, we ended up at Cyclo de Saigon since we were able to score a table for three there.
The abundance of brown and green tones transported me to a jungle-like setting. This was especially the case thanks to the hut-like bar that sat in the middle of the restaurant. Vibrant and refreshing.
Garlic lemongrass chicken skewers, served with sweet chilli sauce.
The chicken skewers possessed a firm and springy texture, and tasted very succulent. A subtle garlic flavour was detectable but lost in the presence of the sweet chilli sauce.
Char-grilled chicken pancakes - sliced chargrilled chicken, with fresh spring onion, pickles, cucumber and hoisin sauce, wrapped in a pancake.
The dish was exactly like peking duck pancakes, but with chicken. The pancake was delicately thin and slightly crispy from its pan-frying. The grilled chicken suited the sweet hoisin sauce perfectly. While the chicken pancake was all well and good, its similarity to the duck version had me lamenting the absence of crispy duck skin.
Loving the presentation in the big, wooden pail.
Our main dishes.
Hmmm… I’m spotting a lot of green, yellow, orange and red here…
Vegetarian delight - fresh Asian greens, wok tossed, with fried tofu and light oyster soy sauce.
The veggies were doused in a good amount of sweet sauce that flavoured the greens, but the tofu tasted comparatively bland, and seemed like they were an ‘afterthought’ addition. Pleasant enough but nothing memorable.
Chicken with fresh basil and spicy tom yum flavour sauce.
Fans of tom yum soup will go gaga for this tom yum base dish. My palate was blown away by the extent of tom yum flavour in the stir fry dish, although surprised at first by the absence of the usual soup presence. The chicken strips and veggies were well-cooked and tender.
Spicy pork and shrimps egg parcel - stir fried minced pork and shrimps, with red curry paste, lemongrass, spring onion, carrot, beans and roasted peanuts, folded into a thin egg omelette.
Given my love for egg, this was dish was easily one of my favourite dishes on the night. The silky soft egg parcel and its filling seemed to pack all the typical flavours in Thai cuisine, and each bite brought an explosive punch of aromatic sweetness.
With a menu that featured both Vietnamese and Thai dishes, our order of dishes took our taste buds to Thailand. Perhaps the restaurant should consider a name change to Cyclo De Thailand… or Tuk-Tuk De Thailand!
Cyclo De Saigon
3 Main St
Point Cook, Victoria, 3030.
(03) 9395 9048