Ground Level, 9-13 Hay Street
Haymarket NSW 2000
+61 420 966 368
+61 479 000 445
236a Illawarra Rd
Marrickville NSW 2204
So I just realised I will be heading back to The State That Fails At State of Origin Competitions very soon and with that, guilt that comes from not having finished my Sydney reviews from two months ago. Oops. I was planning to push my Sydney reviews aside in favour of writing about various Melbourne blogger dinners, new city eateries and the time Dave and I had dinner at Mr Mason and watched an entire wine shelf collapsed mid-way through dinner, almost injuring a poor diner who was sitting just below the shelf. However, I thought I’d get them done this week because my NSW readers rock. So first up, Marrickville Pork Roll: the Haymarket edition.
Marty and I were wondering around Haymarket one Sunday morning and serendipitously came across Paddy’s Market in Haymarket. The famous market was not on our list of places to visit that weekend (well, it initially was but we had to sadly cross it off our list, thinking that we wouldn’t have time to visit). However, as luck would have had it, one minute we were walking off our post-Din Tai Fung dumpling coma and the next minute we were staring at rows of Ugg boots, heavy metal CDs, soft toys and hot dog stalls.
But wait! What was this?
Did I just see a sign saying ‘PORK ROLL’?
Oh, I think I did!
Marty was quicker than I was, however, and before I knew it, I saw the idiot running up to the stall with his wallet out of his pocket. ‘Never mind the dumpling coma,’ he thought, ‘I have to get a bánh mì!’
This stall is an offshoot of the original Marrickville Pork Roll stall which is in, surprise surprise, Marrickville. From what I know, there is a lack of Vietnamese dining (or snacking) options closer to the CBD so this stall is filling in the gap. I also liked the fact that while the stall offers your typical market snacks such as dim sims and chips, their main focus is on creating the perfect bánh mì for hungry market-goers.
At $4.50, the bánh mì here is more expensive than the most expensive bánh mì in Melbourne (my ex’s mother, for example, stopped going to Footscray’s Nhu Lan as soon as they jacked their prices up from $3.50 to $3.80). It is also slightly larger too, almost as big as a slightly deflated Sherrin.
Marty loved his bánh mì, saying that it was packed with all the pickled carrot-y, pâté-y, coriander-y, spicy chilli and deli meat-y goodness. The warm, crusty bread roll tasted exactly how a fresh bánh mì from a bricks and mortar Vietnamese bakery would taste like but (thankfully) lacked the sugar content that Nhu Lan’s breads are sometimes guilty of having. That said, we both agreed that the pork rolls at Nhu Lan, like the Maroons last night, nipped Marrickville by just one point. Nhu Lan’s rolls have fillings that are slightly tastier, but only because the Marrickville version were stint on the pâté and the mayonnaise was a bit bland. Therefore, while Nhu Lan represents better value for money, we’d be very happy with a Marrickville pork roll whenever we’re in Sydney.
On that note, if Sydneysiders know a good place that makes decent Vietnamese pork rolls in or near the CBD, then please let me know below!
EDIT (23/07/2012): We went back a few weeks ago and had a completely different experience. The truck was run by a completely different person who gave us a pork roll that was filled with lettuce (WTF) and a mayonnaise that was water-y. The bread was verging on stale too. ‘Tastes like a glorified ham sandwich’ said Marty. After this experience, we will NOT be back.