What are you doing tonight? Do you have plans? If not – why not head to the Suzuki night market?
Run every summer at the Queen Victoria Market on Wednesday nights, the night market has hawker style food stalls, craft stalls selling clothing and jewellery, plus live entertainment.
I hadn’t visited the night market for a couple of years and it seems to have gotten bigger and busier – certainly it felt like half of Melbourne was there last week. It helped that it was a gloriously balmy night.
As soon as Alastair and I walked into the market, we were seduced by the call of a spiral cut battered deep fried potato dusted with chilli powder ($6).
All carbed and deep fried up, we were then enticed by fresh coconut juice ($6). Mhmmmm. Yeah, we are easily seduced.
With Hazzie in tow, we wandered around a little, checking out all the different food stalls. All kinds of cuisines were on offer: a couple of stalls were making massive pans of paella.
There was Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese and Latin America food.
There were people hard at work making Turkish gozleme, as well as a stall serving Polish pierogi.
There was pork served all different ways: in rolls, as sausages, as meatballs, and American style ribs.
And there was lots of desserts: big pancakes, ice cream, gelato, honey dumplings and crepes.
In addition to food, there were drink options: cocktails, sangria, lemonade and fresh coconuts.
It seemed that almost everyone had a big cup of sangria, and I was sorely tempted… until I saw the line. It was one of the biggest queues – the sangria stall was very popular.
I settled for a lemonade slushie instead ($6).
After scoping out all the stalls and the lines, we picked out some food to eat. I selected pierogi (3 for $7) – Polish dumplings stuffed with cheese and served with sour cream and bacon bits.
While I was getting pierogi, Alastair stood in line for meatball sliders (2 for $10).
The pierogi and meatball sliders were fairly filling, but I decided we could fit in one more savoury dish and wandered back into the crowds to get a lamb and spinach gozleme ($10). Unfortunately it was really doughy and meh. It didn’t help that I ruined it with the chilli sauce (it appears I found the one savoury item that doesn’t taste better with chilli).
Oh well. We were quite full anyway so moved on to dessert.
When I spotted the taiyaki during our earlier scoping out session, I became obsessed and wouldn’t shut up about it.
“Afterwards we can have taiyaki”
“We have to have taiyaki.”
“I want taiyaki.”
“Did you see the taiyaki?”
“Taiyaki taiyaki taiyakiiiiiiii.”
The options were red bean, custard or chocolate – naturally I choose red bean ($4). A fish shaped pancake with red bean filling – what’s not to love?
Our second dessert was honey dumplings with ice cream ($7.50) – balls of warm bready dough, covered in honey, with a scattering of sesame and cinnamon.
Share this! It’s a big serve.
It’s a fun night out, however if you’re not into crowds, try and get there early as it became really busy later in the night. Also it’s best to go with a group so someone can save a table while others go buy food.
I’d also recommend taking plenty of cash with you – the market has ATMs but the line for the ATM was almost as long as the queue for sangria.
And my final tip: line up for sangria first. The line doesn’t get any shorter. :p
Suzuki Night Market
Queen Victoria Market – enter via Queen, Therry or Peel Streets
Dates: Every Wednesday night during summer from 14 November 2012 to 27 February 2013 (excluding 26 December 2012)
Time: 5.00pm to 10.00pm