Dandelion offer noodle soup dishes, a large variety of dishes to share and also a few banquet menus if you don't want to deal with the expansive menu. We decided to choose a dish or two each and all share instead of going for the banquet menu.
The tiger prawns were cooked well inside however crunchy exterior of green rice was tasteless so without dipping it into the nuoc cham, it was bland and boring.
We followed this up with rice paper rolls which when I saw the price I almost had a heart attack. I'm so used to having these for dinner on a weekly basis that I can't justify paying $16 upwards for a single roll - no matter what type of fancy ingredients it comprises of. We weren't a big fan of the salmon rolls and the granny smith apple was a strange addition.
Torched salmon, salmon caviar, heart of palm with shredded granny smith apple and yuzu soy ($16)
The soft shell crab rice paper rolls were nice and crunchy although Mrs T's magical sauce was nothing out of the ordinary.
The elements were fresh and the deep fried lotus root was crispy but overall, it was quite boring. Taste-wise I didn't think much of this salad and left it for the others.
Considering that my friend had chosen this restaurant specifically for the BBQ pork spare ribs which had been nominated by The Age Good Food Guide 2012 as the dish of the year, we ordered two serves. We had blindly trusted that dish of the year would live up to its name. The ribs were tender and fell off the bone but where was the flavour? No hint of charred goodness, no sticky barbecue flavours - the dish underwhelmed us as did the salad of lychee and mint which seemed out of place. In the end, a plate of ribs were left over which we forced onto the guys to finish.
The ribs were served with a small bowl of vermicelli noodles and a mix of salad leaves which I left as it was too much of a hassle to eat that way.
To end the night, we had a strawberry and berry tart from one of my favourite cake shops, Le Petit Gateau, which I had picked up earlier. Unfortunately, the biggest surprise of the night was finding out that there was a cakage charge of $5 per person. I understand that some restaurants feel they miss out on the patron's sampling their dessert menu if they bring a cake but paying $35 for the cake itself then paying another $35 for cakage made it cost $70 all up for a small cake - $10 per person for a slice of cake. I suppose I should have called and checked beforehand but next time we'll just be having cake at home, we just wanted to give the birthday girl some sparkles yo.
Will I return? No, I wasn't impressed and prices were steep.
133 Ormond Road
Elwood VIC 3184
(03) 9531 4900