A cold rainy night and we don't feel like walking too far so we jump in the recently gold plated (according to the cost of the repairs) car and head for Marrickville.
It's a case of stopping at the first place we find a park and don't have to walk very far, so Ben Ngu wins the magic parking stop race. We're in the mood for hot steaming soup to ward off impending colds and there is a hearty selection to choose from. Mr Shawn goes for Bun Moc, the Northern Vietnamese vermicelli soup with roast pork, fried pork pieces and some more porky pieces of mystery in a light clear broth. $8.50.
Hue style crepe: turmeric tinged, a sweetish, crispy morsel with prawns and pork embedded in the mix, topped with lightly cooked bean sprouts.
With the crepe is a small salad with cucumber and mint leaves, and a nutty sesame and peanut sauce for dipping, dunking or pouring. Just break off bits and eat how you like. About $9.
Miss Chicken tries the Banh canh cua thit heo, a rich thick noodle soup with crab meat pieces and roast pork slices. The noodles are thick rice slippery suckers, like udon, and the soup is a thick hearty broth with tomato. Don't expect giant hunks of crab to appear but there's enough to give some flavour. $9.
This is your typical Marrickville joint, it hasn't gone upmarket like a lot of the newer places in 'the new Paddington'. It's perfect for an easy dinner or some takeaway. The staff are friendly and will explain what the dishes are and the best way to eat them. Like most Vietnamese food, you enjoy it just how you want.
If you have travelled South-East Asia a lot you may have developed a taste for a dollop of condensed milk in your coffee, it's like coffee and desert all in one. Love it.
Ben Ngu is at 260 Marrickville Road, open for dinner and lunch. We've feasted here before, see our previous post, and we will certainly eat here again.