Adelaide Casino’s chic, new-look Vietnamese fusion restaurant, Madame Hanoi, launched its spring menu in style on Wednesday night, 13th September, with a stunning showcase banquet in partnership with Adelaide Hills winemaker Howard Vineyard.
Proceedings kicked off on arrival, with platters of natural oysters drizzled with mignonette sauce and piquant rare beef crostini with white anchovy and mint. Dainty and delicious, the canapés were served alongside Howard’s 2014 Blanc de Noir sparkling white – the crisp finish of the bubbly juxtaposing perfectly with the sweet and salty finger food. Seated in the front-of-house bistro area, one cannot help but admire the intriguing décor of Madame Hanoi, particularly the breathtaking oriental mural spanning the eastern wall.
Course one featured melt-in-your-mouth crayfish cold rolls with Hanoi pickles and roasted peanut sauce, paired with the 2017 Howard Clover cabernet franc Rosé. Easy on the palate, but not unbearably sweet, the young Rosé sat delectably with the light, tasty cold rolls.
Course two brought more seafood in the form of a yellow fin tuna nicoise with spring vegetables and a tangy smoked fish sauce, complemented by the intricate Clover Pinot Gris.
The third course brought a hint of spice to the table, with grilled chicken taco-style bao and a 2016 Amos Chardonnay. Cooked in five spices and topped with chilli, pickled daikon and garlic chips, the banh bao paired beautifully with the fruity white.
The final main consisted of three parts: sticky lamb ribs, stir-fried ong choy (water spinach) and rice. Doused in black vinegar and chilli garlic sauce, the ribs fell juicily off the bone, while the morning glory and rice provided perfect bedding. Howard’s 2015 Amos Shiraz rounded out the fourth course, giving it a subtle yet sophisticated edge.
Madame Hanoi may well have saved the best until dessert, however, with a coconut custard pavlova served alongside the restaurant’s very own signature Sour cocktail. Straying from the typical citrus-style meringue, the pavlova was topped off with a poached half-plum, passionfruit jus and just a hint of kaffir lime.
Making use of the vast array of flavours that make up both modern and traditional Vietnamese cuisine, Madame Hanoi has created some truly beautiful dishes – dishes which are only enhanced by the complex variety of Howard wines.
The bustling, buzzing atmosphere provides the perfect backdrop for any occasion, be that for business or for pleasure; the ornamentation is stimulating without being overwhelming, and the two-levelled space delivers an acoustic wonderland of humming voices, clattering plates and fast-filling bellies.
Spring in Saigon is certain to be an Adelaide hit.