Following the advice of a somewhat fanatical online poster, and in the unfortunate situation of Viet’z Eatery not being open during the crucial Wednesday-Thursday period where I usually find myself in Wollongong I decided to try Saigon Senses’ alternative offering of Vietnamese food. While I visited in person, the current COVID-19 lockdown restrictions in NSW meant that I had to take my food home to eat.
First up was this rather disappointing Cracking Pork Roll ($10.50). Whilst at first it appears unassuming and normal, this banh mi was way too salty for my liking. Your classic pork roll is a mix of umami proteins and a balance of fresh salads, however I felt that in this case even the salad components were too sauced. While I did enjoy the large quantity of pork as well as the addition of crunchy pork crackling, the fact that each and every bite had a strong and inescapable soy sauce flavour ruined the experience for me. That, and paying $10.50 for something you’d pay $8 for in Sydney, puts this particular roll into no re-match territory for me.
The spicy beef noodles ($11.50), unlike the crackling pork roll, was actually both cheap and good. This bowl featured thin round vermicelli, rare sliced beef, and spicy sour broth served separately. Saigon Senses is well set up for take-away, clear from the fact that the separately packaged soup and noodles fit perfectly into the disposable plastic bowl when recombined – thoughtfulness that not many restaurants exhibit. The rare beef was tender, cooked just a little by the hot soup. While I’m used to bun bo hue containing multiple types of meat, including beef brisket, rare beef, and cha lua (pork sausage), I’m reliably informed that it is also acceptable to just have rare beef slices by themselves. Regardless, this was a nice, tasty, and warming bowl that I can recommend to anyone.
Wollongong Central (opposite Coles) 200 Crown St, Wollongong NSW 2500
0481 368 009