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Gastronomical ramblings

Banh Mi Boys & Platinum Bar Solutions Launch Party

With a continuous flow of scrumptious Vietnamese street food, a seemingly unlimited supply of tasty cocktail concoctions, a DJ churning out the tunes to full doof doof blast, and flashy lights exuding a disco-esque vibe, the folks from the Banh Mi Boys food truck and Platinum Bar Solutions (mobile bar service) sure know how to throw a party. Receiving an invite from Mindy Woods, who was on the launch party scene cooking in collaboration with the Banh Mi Boys, I attended the launch event last Thursday, and would like to thank the Banh Mi Boys, Platinum Bar Solutions and Mindy Woods for what was one fabulous (and successful) night. 

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The truck. 

Psssst! Keep an eye out for this truck. And when you find it, you will be rewarded with some delicious bread rolls. Fact. 

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Check out the transformation of the Brunswick warehouse space into a full swing partaaaay. 

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The Bar - Platinum Bar Solutions. 

'The Little Drippa Expresso Martinis' on the bottom right were just adorable. Going by presentation alone, I would have snapped one up. But given my inability to enjoy coffee (shame on me, I know, I know), I went for the…

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…Citrus & Cardamom Caipirovska. The orange, lime and lemon presence made for one refreshing drink that wowed the taste buds. 

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Also served at the bar was ‘Illuminating water’. 

Illuminating water you say? What’s that? Sparkly water? 

No, it was literally a bottle of water with a light at the bottom! Aaaaah, illuminating…

K. Mangz managed to get hold of one of these. While it tasted no different to normal water, the flashing lights will make you go cross-eyed as you drink! 

Onto the food: 

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Bo la lot - chargrilled beef, with betel leaf. 

The beef was particularly aromatic, and its seasoning was very similar to something you would pick up in the filling of a dumpling. So to me, it tasted like a skin-less dumpling, wrapped in chargrilled betel leaf. 

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Chatnam Island cod ceviche - with orange ginger dressing and fragrant herb. 

Quite a mouthful to eat, the ceviche was fresh, while the sweet orange and ginger dressing was subtle. Combined with the crispier betel leaf, there were some contrasting flavours and textures in this dish that melded together well. 

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Mama Poon’s poached wontons - vege wontons with shiitake two ways. 

(There was also a prawn and pork version, with anchovy broth, soy and ginger). 

The wonton skins were delicate, and there was a very distinctive taste of shiitake mushroom in the filling. The dumplings sat in a puddle of vinegar combined with soy sauce, and while I don’t like vinegar with my dumplings, I thought the flavour paired well with the earthy shiitake. 

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Goi (salad) on a crispy bread (vegie crisp).

If I thought the cod ceviche in the betel leaf was difficult to eat, then I had another thing coming with this dish. With the crumbly cracker loaded with a huge pile of fresh coleslaw salad that was doused in a sweet dressing, it was difficult to get a bite without making some sort of mess. Unless I was mistaken, the veggie crisp tasted a lot like a prawn cracker. 

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Bamboo boat of braised beef - beef brisket, puffed rice, fragrant herbs and flavoured rice. 

Forget the flavoured rice, the brisket itself and the rich stew-like sauce it sat in was already oozing with flavour. 

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Speech time! 

Mindy Woods, the three Banh Mi Boys, and Hayley from Platinum Bar Solutions. It was at this point that we found out the star of the show, the banh mis, were on their way. 

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Preparation of the banh mis in the food truck. The hungry crowd awaits… 

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Banh mi preparation in action. 

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The serving of the banh mis. 

*Note. TWICE I missed out on getting a roll as I was too busy trying to capture this shot! But I did eventually get my hands on one… third time’s the charm! 

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Mini pork belly banh mi - with cucumber, carrot, corianger and aioli, in bread from Convent Bakery. 

The event started at 6pm, and the rolls came out just before 9.30pm, which meant we waited for a good three hours for the star attraction. But the wait was well worth it! The flavours in that roll, particularly in the grilled lemongrass pork belly, were absolutely sensational. The lemongrass was very aromatic and worked perfectly with the smokiness imparted by the grilling process. The pork paired well with the sweet aioli, and fresh, traditional veggie components of a bread roll. While still possessing some crunch, the bread itself wasn’t as crunchy as the typical Vietnamese bread roll, BUT this also meant that the usual crumby mess was non-existent. That’s a win in my books. 

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Kaffir lime cheese cake tarts (by Butter Mafia). 

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Not really expecting it given that we were already blown away by the bread rolls, but these cute tarts also knocked our socks off. The buttery pastry was very short, resulting in a delightful melt-in-the-mouth crunch. The cream cheese filling was airy light, and the potent kaffir lime flavour was surprisingly potent, but pleasantly so. I have only ever encountered kaffir lime in savoury dishes, but thought it worked perfectly in a sweet setting. 

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Goodie bags, with plenty of pamphlets and a bottle of fish sauce. Win! 

After trying just one mini banh mi bread roll, I had to go back for a second one. And even still… let’s just say if I could have gotten away with it, I would have ran away with a whole platter. The pork banh mis were THAT good. While I was originally planning on paying the truck a visit anyway, now I actually don’t have a choice… must get some more pork banh mis… 

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Banh Mi Boys

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http://www.banhmiboys.com.au/