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Benjamin's Kitchen

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by Mon's Adventure (subscribe)
Documenting roadtrip adventures and foodie outings. See more at monsadventure.com!
Published February 1st 2015
A little cafe marked by a simple white sign on the side of the road would usually not receive much attention.

In the quiet neighbourhood of Alphington, not quite known for its food scene, lies a lovely Pan-Asian restaurant. The cuisine is unsurprising as the eatery is run by the same owner as Northcote's Taxi Boat.

Benjamin's Kitchen
A playful yet simple design


With a little online publicity, you'll see patrons curiously heading into this store, which has been open for a bit more than a month.

Benjamin's Kitchen
The birds on the wall provide a calm feeling


Its interior makes a lovely first impression, but it was generally quiet when we visited on a weekend morning around 11am.

The staff were accommodating and friendly but may need a little more experience as the cafe gets busier.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Simple and lovely interior


For example, I've heard some people say it was not mentioned to them that the menu is designed for sharing. It's lucky I had seen the menu and photos of food online to know this beforehand.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Our lattes


Their coffee was good but not one of the best in Melbourne. There was no sugar on the table and they forgot to bring some to us, but not a big deal.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Soft shell crab burgers


The menu is littered with ingredients preceded by hashtags but also fascinating sounding dishes.

It's generally a bit pricey, but the price you pay for quality and unique food. My friend loved the soft shell crab burgers, the serving coming with two mini buns.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Salmon rice paper roll


The rice paper 'roll' was more of a cup and the crispy rice paper created an ingenious method of presentation. The salmon and ingredients were fresh and healthy but the downside was the crispy cup was chewy and gets stuck in your teeth.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Another angle of the rice paper roll


An excellent dish for sharing is the salmon soba noodles. There are plenty of noodles to go around, leading me to regret ordering that extra rice. Similar to the rice paper roll, the pan-grilled salmon and salad ensured that the meal felt guilt-free.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Beautiful salmon soba noodles


The twice cooked pork belly was more decadent, with a dark and sweet sauce along with nice chunks of fat. The rice helps balance the flavour. It would be ideal for two people but not more than that.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Pork belly


Overall I loved the modern approach to Asian cuisine as well as the light and healthy feeling, which seemed to suit the calm, blue decor.

With its interesting menu I'll definitely come back to try things such as the Breakfast Squid or Heaven Duck. It is a little pricey with our meal coming to more than $70 but we didn't finish it all and as I said - the food is unique and full of quality.

Benjamin's Kitchen
Soft Shell Crab burgers


The restaurant is continuing to grow, as a staff member admitted to us after some online articles, so I suggest you drop by before they become even more popular!
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Why? To try some quality Asian-influenced dishes in an unexpected neighbourhood
When: 758 Heidelberg Rd, Alphington
Phone: (03) 9499 3743
Where: 758 Heidelberg Rd, Alphington
Cost: $7-$20
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