Whenever I feel a bit blah, I often seek the aid of the comfort food of my childhood, which can mean a craving for soup noodles.
However, I’m not very adventurous when it comes to trying cheap-and-cheerful Asian restaurants unless they come with a recommendation – so one lunch hour I popped onto twitter with the following message:
“Need soup noodles. But can’t go to Ramen Ya for the 3rd time this week! Any other CBD suggestions?”
Wow! Quick as a flash, I had five suggestions and so I’m going to start a little ad hoc series called Soup Noodles in the CBD. First up, The Grand BBQ.
I’ve actually walked past The Grand BBQ numerous times as it’s located in the Target Centre, but I’ve dismissed it previously as another food-court-chop-suey kind of establishment.
How wrong. While the large menu of noodles and rice dishes is still order-by-number, it’s heartening to see that their barbeque pork and roast meats are all strung up on metal hooks for inspection and display. At lunch time the pace was fast and furious as noodles and accompaniments were cooked to order, so you know your food hasn’t been stewing in a bain-marie.
The seated space is small and crowded and the restaurant also does a busy line in takeaway, and I’d say that the number of people eating The Grand BBQ easily outnumbers all the other establishments in the food court. I also love visiting the kind of places where people from all walks of life are enjoying the kind of food that I grew up with – on the day I was there the place was packed with Asian students, pinstriped office workers, inter-racial couples and rather a glamorously dressed middle-aged woman out shopping for the day.
As for my egg noodles with barbecue pork and roast duck ($9.80), I’d say it was worth recommending but not amazing. On the positives, the barbecue pork was lean, the clear broth soup was flavoursome without being overly salty and the serving size was generous. On the other hand, I found the noodles soaked a little too soft for my liking and the roast duck skin was overly chewy.
- The Grand BBQ, Shop 6, Target Centre, 236 Bourke St, Melbourne +61 3 9639 7228