Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Noodle Bar, David Jones Food Court, Bourke St Mall, Melbourne

Noodle Bar, David Jones Food Court, Bourke St Mall, Melbourne
Wednesday 16 January, 2008

Having just arrived in Melbourne we checked in and then planned to spend the afternoon shopping. But first, we needed a good feed. Not wanting to spend a huge amount or eat several courses (we were off to Mirka at the Tolarno Hotel tonight) we decided to visit the David Jones Food Court for inspiration.

The lunch crowd had disappeared so it was fantastic to wonder around and take in all the sights and smells ranging from the bakery, cheese stand, deli, oyster bar etc. I rarely get to visit David Jones (as I work at the other end of town in Sydney) and the Food Court is divine as their brochure states,

Come and discover why you will love the David Jones Foodhall, Bourke Street, Melbourne. Gleaming counters, the smiling faces of a hundred Foodhall staff ready to help you. The butcher with knife sharpened to do your bidding. A seafood counter brimming with the freshest prawns. 100 different sorts of bread. A delicatessen stocked with German, Italian, French and English smallgoods.

The Meals-to-go counter that stretches from here to eternity with delicious ready-to-eat food and just-heat-and-eat prepared meals. The Oyster Bar where oysters and champagne are served as a decadent treat. The Juice Bar, the Noodle Bar, the Sushi Bar, the Pasta and Panini Bar, and the Espresso Bar. Wheels of cheeses stacked four high, a seasonal cheese board, olives of every persuasion, a tempting array of antipasto to try from our Cheese and Antipasto Bar.

A fabulous Wine and Spirit Department with a cellar man who lives and breathes wine. Shelves stocked with famous food brands from around Australia and around the world. The fact that you can get everything you need from under one roof. The excitement and sheer buzz of a place dedicated to good food. Come and discover why you love the David Jones Foodhall at Bourke Street. For food lovers, there’s no other store like David Jones.

The Noodle Bar stood out with it's round bar and open kitchen so we could sit on the high chairs and watch the chefs at work. It was still busy with the ladies who lunch so we decided to pull up a high chair and review the menu. Decisions, decisions....

As we watched the bowls of food being prepared from scratch it became harder and harder to make a decision as everything just looked so fresh and delicious. Our chef was scruffy and his checked pants were far too loose and baggy but, boy could he cook!

I ordered the Pad Thai Chicken and my lunch buddy ordered the Salt & Pepper Squid. We watched with delight as our meals were prepared and sat back with a couple of beers enjoying the show. The high flames of the wok, the frantic pace of the four staff moving around the small kitchen and the fresh food - it was great to watch.

The Salt & Pepper Squid arrived first and after one mouth full my lunch buddy stated this was the best Salt & Pepper Squid ever tasted. A big call to make but I have to admit it looked fabulous.

My Pad Thai arrived and we swooned over the huge bowl laced with chilli flakes. My initial mouthful tasted soft glass noodles, coriander, chilli, lime and tamarind. I was very happy - the food was seriously good and it was served in abundance. For this feast we paid just over $30 which included the 2 meals and 2 beers.

We loved every mouthful and the next time I return to Melbourne I will swing by the food court for a quick bite. Loved it!

Noodle Bar, David Jones Food Court, Bourke St Mall, Melbourne


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