The vibe was busy as expected, as well as hip and happening. It is crazy to find yourself only a whisker away from the slot machines and gaming activity, yet when you are in this culinary cocoon, you suddenly find yourself immune to all of that racket outside. Thank goodness for that. The spirit of celebrating another lunar year has succumbed to our senses.
A buzz of activity near you, yet it doesn't bother you at Sho.
Some juicy garlic prawns were definitely on the cards (sorry, bad pun), and especially as this friend of mine enthusiastically had a brochure at hand with some chilli prawns. Being a noodle bar, it made sense to go for some noodle dish, especially if you're working on having a few drinks well into the night with a flight back home the very next morning. That decision paid off, and as classic as our friendship is, we both opted for the exact same dish. For both of us the Penang Char Kway Teow - wok fried hor fun noodles with prawns and Chinese sausage ($20.50) did not disappoint. It felt like Chinese New Year had come early. The prawns were king size, mammoth and utterly generous with the right combinations of spice and flavour. On that note, ask for some water, you will need it. That is exactly what we did. The noodles have that soy taste, and the ingredients tasted fresh, and upon second observation (more on this later), fresh was best.
My friend thoroughly enjoyed her glass of Chapel Hill Underwood Chardonnay (Clare Valley, South Australia) that came to $8 per glass. Although not the most appropriately matched wine with fish, yet for the Chinese sausage, a glass of Ninth Island Pinot Noir (Tamar Valley, Tasmania) at $9 a glass was perfect. Mellow, woody and not overly sweet. Plenty to keep me going to my next round four hours later.
That was it until deja vu crept in while my friend wanted to utilise her Gold Siganture Club benefits and tap a few buttons on a chilli (slot) machine. Walk a block and then you'll want something sweet.
It was a smart decision to return for some sweet mango paradise at Sho Noodle Bar. This time we did not sit at a proper wooden table. Instead we sat at the bar facing right into the kitchen area. It was amazing to see factory like organisation among the kitchen staff. Hygiene was not neglected, and all chefs looked perfect in their black suits. It felt like I was in China or Thailand as I sat in trance towards the kitchen. Kitchen supreme as my friend and I were waiting for our mango pudding with mango ice cream ($6.50) to arrive. It was clear that the staff could take the heat as the orders were flocking through. I loved how the fresh vegetables (including some fresh eggplants) were stacked on wooden shelves above certain workstations. I fell in love with this place, and especially with the tangy mango flavour of the ice cream and the pudding. Something would be wrong if this tropical fruity sensation was removed from the menu.
Our sweets took a bit of time to arrive on our table, and to the point that we were water thirsty and asked for some more water. More water came straightaway. The dessert was filling, and the mango flavour was astonishingly strong, like a couple of real live mangoes were used just for us. We were spoilt. I am impressed. Delightful Sho, and a Happy New Year to you.