Mum Mum Asian Street Food, 67 Flemington Road, North Melbourne. Phone: 9329 7106
Mum Mum is a lovely eatery on Flemington Road that’s been open about four weeks.
Given its location opposite great swathes dedicated to the medical industry – where the food options are probably not so hot – and the many offices around here, I reckon this place will go well, especially at lunch time.
But anyone who feels their pulse quickening at the attractive thought of dining at an establishment with the words “Asian Street Food” incorporated into its name had best take a chill pill.
We end up reckoning there is good and maybe even very good food to be had here, even though our lunch is mixed bag.
It’s more that anyone seeking the funky pungency and aromas and spiciness of real-deal street food may be a little disappointed.
From what the staff tell me, the usage of the street food term is a bid to create a point of difference between Mum Mum and the family-connected straight-up Thai place right next door.
So while the lunch menu from which we order is basically a Thai document, there are items such as taro prawns, seafood gyoza, various dumplings and spring rolls in the “Little Something” section.
The ground floor dining room of the Victorian double-storey building is a very nice, with different kinds of wood in the chairs, tables, stools, floor, stairs to the upstairs and screen creating a warm feel.
I like the idea of a Thai-style curry “free of coconut milk” and I like the idea of a lighter lunch with lots of fresh vegetables – so I order the “jungle veg. curry w. rice” ($11.90).
This turns out to be a miscalculation on my part, because without coconut milk – or some other thickening agent – what I get, of course, is not curry but soup.
The vegetables are fine and the broth is spicy and highly fragrant with kaffir lime and basil.
But somewhere along the way this misses the mark with me – it fills me up but leaves me feeling empty.
Bennie does much better with his “fresh basil chick w. fried egg” ($11.90), which is much more sexy than his dad’s lunch.
Piled on top of rice is an oily, garlicky mix of chicken mince, lots of fried onions of the kind that Bennie really loves these days and other vegetables, with a fried egg as head gear.
This, too, is rather spicy but too much so for the boy.
Interestingly, our pal Nat had a rather different experience with this dish at Mum Mum – as you can see by reading his comments at Urbanspoon.
Whether this is because Bennie has been served a very different and much better meal, or whether we are utterly clueless about a food style on which Nat is an internationally renowned expert we know not.
As we depart, I spy another customer tucking into what looks like a marvellous plate of lamb mussaman curry – that’s for me next time!
Check out the Mum Mum website here.