If you’re a dessert fan and ever in Springvale one day then it’s worth checking out Desserts by Night to satisfy your sweet tooths! Davin and I were in the area for dinner with Hello.imnikki and partner when we decided to check out this newish place to see what it was all about. We learnt that it also had a sister branches at other locations.
As we were walking towards the place, from across the road we weren’t actually sure if it was open or not. They had garage like roller shutters that were a quarter down and we couldn’t see any lights on. However when we got closer we realised that they were open. Yay! The cafe itself was very large and spacious with plenty of chairs and tables.
Being really full still from dinner, we decided to order a few desserts to share. The pear shaped dessert was called The Helen which Hello.imnikki ordered. Of course I couldn’t resist trying it given it was my name! It was shaped just like a pear so delicately placed on a bed of chocolate. We cracked the outer layer of white chocolate to find lovely chunks of pear and cream inside. It was probably more on the sweet side for me but a nice and pretty dessert nonetheless.
The Mango Pudding was my type of dessert. Firstly because I love all things mango, but also because it was a light and not too sweet type of dessert. It had fresh mango, mango coulis, lychee foam, condensed milk, vanilla crumble, tuile biscuit and mango sorbet. A dream dessert for a mango lover and all the components went perfectly together.
Finally we also tried their special which was the Pinata. Now if we weren’t already impressed with the presentation of the desserts so far, then this really wowed us. The dish came out on this wooden contraption where a white chocolate sphere dangled above the rest of the dish. The idea is to crack it open with your spoon, releasing flakes of goodies over the dessert. On the main dish was a coconut cheesecake, with berries and pineapple and passionfruit sorbet. It was a really refreshing dish!
We were overall certainly impressed with all the desserts they had to offer, particularly the flavours and the beautiful presentation of their dishes. A place we will definitely think of again after dinner one night!
Desserts by Night
Approx $20 AUD per person
Address: 317 Springvale Rd, Springvale VIC 3171
Phone: +61 3 9540 3453
Being Vietnamese, I’ve grown up eating Vietnamese food at home and at the restaurants in Springvale where I’ve had the pleasure of being served authentic dishes. Don’t ever expect any customer service and a clean environment when you’re eating in these restaurants. You’re there for the food and that is it! However over the past few years I have noticed a lot more modern looking Vietnamese restaurants popping up in Springvale.
We recently discovered a fairly new restaurant called Quan Lua that opened up with apparently really good Bun bo Hue. Now for those that don’t know, Bun bo Hue is a spicy Vietnamese noodle soup from Hue, a city in central Vietnam. Davin and I have both had our fair share of this dish in our lifetime and so when a friend of ours told us how good it was there, it certainly piqued our interest.
Located on Buckingham Avenue along a strip of other restaurants and shops, Quan Lua is a smallish no nonsense restaurant. When you enter, you know it’s the real deal when there are only true blue Vietnamese customers dining inside.
For drinks I ordered the iced kumquat drink which was delicious. Davin has never been a fan of kumquat in general but I love it. He stuck to just hot tea.
But we were there of course for their famous Bun bo Hue so we ordered 2 bowls of it and excitedly waited with much anticipation. They came out in large generous bowls piping hot with the usual sides of lime wedges, mint, bean sprouts and other greens to mix in with your Bun bo Hue. The first thing we noticed was that it was packed full of goodies to devour! They definitely didn’t cheapen out as the bowls had lots of beef and pork slices, cubes of pig blood and large pork knuckles.
The first thing I always do when eating a soupy dish is to take a sip of the broth to get a sense of the flavours. The broth was so beautifully flavoured. It had the perfect amount of spiciness combined with the lovely sour and salty flavours to make it a killer broth. The noodles were also perfectly bouncy and not too soft. Coated in the flavoured broth, I enjoyed slurping up every bit of noodle. The beef and pork portions were generous with the right amounts of fat attached to it, however it was the pig blood that was really special. These cubes of blood was so delicate like jelly, and so fresh! I don’t think I’ve ever had pig blood that fresh before.
Verdict? Probably the best Bun bo Hue I’ve had in a long time! Highly recommend! However if you do feel like another soup noodle dish there, I also recommend their country style chicken noodle soup which is also amazing. The broth is herbal based and also really flavoured. The chicken literally just falls off the bone too!
Approx $15 AUD
Address: 23A Buckingham Ave, Springvale VIC 3171
Phone: +61 (0)401 211 888
We do love Thai cuisine however haven’t had a fantastic experience with Thai restaurants in Springvale in the past. Unfortunately on this occasion it was no different.
Saab Der Thai is located in the heart of Springvale and is a small takeaway style shop with tables for eating in.
We got the Thai iced milk tea which was actually pretty good because it wasn’t overly sweet. It had a good tea flavour to it so I liked it.
Because there were a number of us, we decided to order a variety of dishes for sharing. This included the chicken satay sticks, Pad Thai noodles, red curry with chicken, green curry with beef, pineapple fried rice, tom yum soup and a couple of salads.
The chicken satay sticks were nice, the meat was tender however the sauce that came with it was not the usual satay sauce. Both the red curries and the green curries were not that great. They were very watery and the meats in it was quite tough and far from tender. The Pad Thai noodles and pineapple fried rice were also just okay. The Pad Thai noodles were flavoured, however the fried rice was quite dry and a tad plain.
The salads were nice and had a good chilli kick to it. The tom yum soup was average and not very special.
Overall, we probably wouldn’t recommend this place if you were in the mood for Thai. The main dishes were a let down and you could definitely find better quality elsewhere. However if you’re desperate for cheap Thai and in the area, it might be more for convenience.
Sabb Der Thai and Esan Food
Approx $25 AUD per person
Address: Unit 1/1-3 St Johns Ave, Springvale VIC 3171
Phone: +61 3 9546 0599