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Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Minh Minh, The Aviary, The Vic

As part of a recent challenge to try every restaurant along Victoria Street, Richmond (since I am newly local to the area), I met friends on Sunday night and we chose to dine at Minh Minh, 94 Victoria Street, Richmond. The restaurant choice was mainly made based on the fact that Minh Minh had a number of "Cheap Eats" stickers in their window, and a fair few customers inside.

We were shown to a table immediately, near the entrance and window, which was pleasant. The service was a bit hit-and-miss - but I have a feeling it's not really the focus of most Victoria Street restaurants. We'd brought a bottle of wine, which was promptly opened and poured, and our order of prawn and pork rice paper rolls for a shared entree also arrived very quickly. The dipping sauce was delicious: sweet and thick, with peanut and onion bits.

Pork & prawn rice paper roll

Between four girls, we ordered and ate almost every trace of Mongolian duck (absolutely fantastic - not too fatty or chewy, nicely charred and with not-too-much sauce), flounder with ginger and fish sauce (delicious, but a bit boney - flounder doesn't have a lot of flesh on it, unfortunately), a chicken and vegie stir fry (pretty good; no complaints), and Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce (for greens). It was tasty, well-cooked, very reasonably priced (less than $25 per person for everything) and served quickly. Fortunately, we were able to make a lot of loud girly noise, as there was no one seated right next to us.

Chicken & vegetable stir fry

Chinese broccoli with oyster sauce

Flounder with ginger & fish sauce

Mongolian duck

As a starting point for Victoria Street dining - I'm sold!

Following dinner, we had some delicious white sangria at The Aviary (271 Victoria Street, Abbotsford side) - it included mango and lychees, so it was really fresh and fruity - and a Hendricks & soda with cucumber at The Vic (281 Victoria Street, Abbotsford), where the bar girl interestingly suggested cracked pepper over the top (delicious, although I was fairly trolleyed by this point so anything would have been delicious!).

Hendricks, soda & cucumber with cracked pepper

It was pretty quiet at The Vic, although I guess it was a Sunday night, but I'd expected it to be a bit more vibey. It'd be a great place for a date, with its booths down the back, but wasn't exactly warm and friendly feeling. Maybe I should try the front section next time.

Planning to head back to the Aviary soon, as (a) it's walking distance from my house, and (b) my housemate and I want to try their "Cheesy Tuesday", where you get two glasses of wine and a cheese board for $25. However, I am saddened and unimpressed that, some time ago, they stopped making my favourite cocktail in ALL OF MELBOURNE: the Sticky Lips Martini. It featured vodka, Frangelico and Cointreau, with an orange peel garnish and ginger marmalade around the glass rim (hence the 'sticky lips' part...). Friggin' delicious. Then again, it's probably better they did take it off the menu - if they brought it back, I'd never leave!

Minh Minh on Urbanspoon

The Aviary on Urbanspoon