Malobo - Opening Night

Malobo - Henley Square, Henley Beach SA 5022

With a palate for well shaken and stirred cocktails and tasty food, On The Chopping Board (OTCB) were the first at the scene (via invite) for the grand opening of Malobo. All food and beverages were provided on behalf of Malobo.

Let the tasting begin!
You may have already heard or come across this spacious corner store café, located on Henley Square, through their delicious breakfast and lunches. The owners are the masterminds behind Swedish Tarts, and now their son is part of the family business in running the café. The inviting décor of Malobo creates an air of relaxation, with pot plants at each corner, wooden tables and warm colours on the walls all coming together to make you feel like you’ve escaped on a holiday to a tropical destination. The place is abuzz with activity, whether it’s from the tasty dishes coming out of the kitchen, or the smiling staff at the bar making drinks. Everyone greets us with a genuine smile and ‘hello’, setting the scene for what one can only expect to be a great evening.

Amaretto Sour (left) & Whiskey Sour (right)
On being greeted at the café, we selected our seats at a long dinner table, incidentally, a great way to meet strangers and get a conversation going. The tables were set with plates of sliced crusty fresh bread, Kalamata olives, olive oil and house made pistachio dukkah for dipping. This was a great way to whet the appetite and enjoy our cocktails before the food came out. Malobo offers a fresh cocktail menu which boasts the likes of an ‘Old Fashioned’, ‘Tom Collins’ and ‘Mojito’ to name a few. On recommendation from the bar staff, I (Sofia) ordered an Amaretto Sour and my partner the Whiskey Sour. The sours were smooth, made with a freshly cracked egg white and garnished to match each base spirit. My Amaretto was fresh citrusy with just the right amount of sweet, a wonderful cocktail to end the long week with, and kick off the weekend. My partners Whiskey Sour was “done just right” according to him and it hit all the right notes.

Clockwise from top right: Fior di Latte, Beef Carpaccio, Trio of Cheeses, Kalamata Olives, Olive Oil, Malobo made Pistachio Dukkah, Walnut Pesto Dip and Crostini
Following our refreshing cocktails, the food began to arrive. Along with the fresh bread and dips, came a plate of cheeses, and Fior di Latte with raspberry vinaigrette and almonds. This slice of white heaven of fresh mozzarella paired with the zesty vinaigrette created a delicious pairing with the vinaigrette highlighting the softness of the cheese. The pairing was perfectly finished off by the crunch of the almonds. 

Following this, a plate of beef carpaccio with tonnato, fried capers and shaved parmesan graced our presence and was a table favourite. The beef was tender and melted in the mouth, while the slightly tangy tonnato sauce added a rich element. This sauce was so delicious we used some of the bread to mop it up.

From top: Hand cut Sweet Potato Chips, Pulled Pork Slider, Beef Fillet with Glass Noodles
As the sun began to set on Henley Square, and the crowd inside became chattier, we were treated to the warm dishes made from fresh ingredients by Malobo. A bowl of hand cut sweet potato chips with shaved parmesan and rosemary salt was a hit. Crunchy chips with the sharpness of parmesan made for a great bite. My personal favourite was the warm Margaret River beef fillet served with glass noodles, nam jim dressing, cashews, fresh bean sprouts and lettuce. The beef was tender, soft and had the right amount of dressing to make it tangy and sweet with just enough kick from the chilli. The glass noodles were a delight to eat, they were refreshing and didn’t feel gluggy or heavy. Meanwhile, my partner’s dish of choice was the pulled pork slider with jamon, parmesan crisp, chilli jam and lettuce, served on a brioche bun. The slider was the perfect size for holding, and had a good amount of pork and jam ratio. The pork was soft, tasty and meaty and after a few bites was quite filling.

Dukkah Crusted Chicken Tenderloins with Buttermilk Dressing and Toasted Sesame Seeds
Another stand out dish worth mentioning was the dukkah crusted chicken tenderloins, with match stick salad, buttermilk dressing and toasted sesame and dill. The chicken was tender and the buttermilk dressing created great flavour and depth while the toasted sesame seeds gave it a nutty flavour and crunch. This one is definitely worth getting to share. 

From top: Marzipan Tart with Mango, Croissants, Lemon Tart, Lemon & Strawberry Puffs
After grazing each plate several more times and declaring ourselves to be stuffed to the brim, we eyed a plate of pastries coming our way. These bite sized pastries were freshly made that morning and came directly from Swedish Tarts patisserie. We were treated to a selection of croissants, lemon and strawberry puffs, marzipan tart with mango, and lemon tart. While these little treats were lovely, they were not a standout, the lemon tart had the right amount of sweetness to the citrus flavour of the lemon, and the strawberry lemon puffs with custard were light, sweet and crunchy. 

On ending our feasting escapades the café opened its bar and doors to the general public. People immediately began to fill up the premises and drinks and food began to flow anew. Malobo certainly has a lot going for it with its fresh, funky vibe, friendly service and delicious food. It is evident the pride the owners have in the café through the food that comes out of the kitchen, to the open ambiance of the interior and exterior of the establishment, which creates a seamless movement from the outdoor beachy scene to the indoor tropical get-away and cocktails scene. I foresee that this will soon be the place to be to catch up with friends over good food, unwind after work or to enjoy a weekend cocktail.  

Malobo Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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