Mai Kitchen - Vietnamese in the 'burbs

Mai Kitchen - 1/34 Corner Warren & Wright Street, Ferryden Park SA 5010

OTCB was invited to Mai Kitchen to try a selection of dishes from their menu. All food and beverages were provided on behalf of Mai Kitchen. Mai Kitchen is located in the same premises as the old NNQ was situated for many years. With big shoes to fill, the family owned Mai Kitchen is tackling the restaurant world in which they have never been a part of before.

On arrival, we (Mirko and Amanda) are seated and provided with the menu. We are happy for Tien (one of the daughters) to help us decide on a selection of speciality dishes to indulge in this evening.

mai kitchen, adelaide, food, ferryden park, spring rolls, vietnamese
Ha Noi Style Spring Rolls $7.90
On presentation of our first dish 'Ha Noi Style Spring Rolls' we are taught how to eat this dish in the traditional Vietnamese manner by placing the spring roll in a large lettuce leaf, topping it with fresh herbs and pickled carrot, and then rolling it up to dip into the sauce provided. This is the part where you cross your fingers hoping your rolling skills are expert enough for the spring roll to make it to your mouth without falling apart!...Mirko's weren't! The spring roll has a lovely crispy outer and flavoursome filling. This deep fried goodness combined well with the freshness from the wrapping of vegetables and herbs and delicious tang and a little heat from the dipping sauce. A great start to the meal.
mai kitchen, adelaide, food, ferryden park, vietnamese, pancake, prawn, pork
Pork & Prawn Vietnamese Pancake (Banh Xeo) $13.00
Next we are presented with another do-it-yourself (DIY) experience - the 'Pork and Prawn Vietnamese Pancake' aka Banh Xeo. This was our favourite dish of the night. The pancake, with razor sharp crispy edges, is a sign of a well cooked traditional Vietnamese pancake which is coupled with a tasty filling of juicy pork, prawns, bean shoots, herbs and sauces. As the pancake is softer than the spring roll it puts extra pressure on your lettuce rolling skills! Lets just say Amanda was more skillful than Mirko in this department... not that it was a competition at all! But overall this dish provided some great laughs as well as finger licking goodness.

mai kitchen, adelaide, food, ferryden park, vietnamese, salt and pepper, squid
Salt & Pepper Squid $14.90
For our main we start with the 'Salt and Pepper Squid'. Unfortunately on this occasion the batter encasing the squid was too thick for our liking and the squid was a little tough and chewy.  We also felt that we couldn't taste enough of the salt and pepper flavouring in this dish. In providing this feedback to Mai's Kitchen they are now working on improving this dish, so we look forward to checking out the refinement of this dish soon.

mai kitchen, adelaide, food, ferryden park, vietnamese, clay pot, rice
Clay Pot Rice $14.00
Our final main for the evening is the 'Clay Pot Rice'.  Mirko likened this dish to the Vietmanese version of the Korean Bibimbap. On arrival of this dish the server cracks your egg in the bowl and stirs all the delicious smelling components together, lifting off the crunchy bits of rice from the bottom of the pot... yum! The crunchy bits of rice at the bottom of the bowl reminded Mirko of stories his mum has told him of when she was young and would fight her siblings to get all the crunchy rice bits from the bowl! The sauce provided to accompany this dish is home made and as we loved it so much we suggested they bottle this sauce to sell and what do you know.. they already do! This was a great flavoured dish with lots of different components to keep it interesting.

mai kitchen, adelaide, food, ferryden park, vietnamese, dessert, coconut, flan
Coconut Flan $5.00
I am not a huge fan of custard based desserts so I gave this to Mirko to have on his own. Mirko notes that the custard is light and creamy and the sauce has strong (but not overpowering) coconut flavours. A nice finish to an overall delightful meal.

Overall, the dishes presented to us on this dining occasion were great and we would both visit again. For a family that has not been involved in the restaurant industry previously, they are doing very well!

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