The Melbourne food scene has developed a love affair with Asian cuisine and as a result places like Homi are welcome entrants. Focusing on Vietnamese flavours, the menu sticks to traditional styles with modern twists. We were lucky enough to have dinner there one night, and got to experience the full spectrum of the menu.
With a DJ pumping out 90s R’n’B tunes, our night started with a starter of tater tots dressed with crack salt sesame mayo and tobiko, the Japanese equivalent of caviar. Just like tater tots should be, they were crunchy on the outside, and fluffy on the inside, and despite these not really being thought of as Asian cuisine, they were definitely delicious and we devoured them.
We then moved on to food that is more typical of the Asian region, baos, but these were not typical baos. Instead they were filled with more modern flavours; pork with pickles, burnt rice and fried egg, and fried chicken with dijon and a burger slaw. The baos were soft and pillowy and the fillings were tantalising on the tongue. We were slowly gaining the understanding that Homi knew food and did it well.
The main course was next and we were treated to two different styles of noodles. Branding themselves as a noodle bar, there were high expectations, and Homi delivered. Served as a deconstructed Bun Cha noodle dish, it was up to us to create our own bowl. We were given vermicelli noodles, crab and pork spring rolls, pickled carrots and kohlrabi, and pork patties and caramelised pork belly, and a deeply flavoursome broth. Adding each of these elements in proportions to our tastes, we were able to create a dish perfect for each of us. We were also given a second main course, a soft shell crab Banh Canh, which was a noodle coup dish with soft shell crab, quail egg and prawns. Again the flavour was deep and complex, and by this time, we were well and truly full.
We had to activate our dessert stomachs though, to enjoy the two desserts we tasted. First up was a twist on an Eton Mess, with meringue, cream, mixed berries and a raspberry coulis all heaped in a delicious mess. We also tasted an ice cream bao, filled with Nutella, vanilla ice cream and hazelnuts. Both desserts were delicious, and despite being so full, we could not resist them.
There is no doubt Homi will be carving itself a home in the Melbourne dining scene. With a pumping atmosphere and delicious food, it certainly deserves its spot.
Moni loves food. No really, she LOVES food. She spends a lot of time eating, cooking, photographing or writing about food.