I have to say.. I use the word lunch crawl very loosely because what we had was more of a feast crawl.
Don’t let the name and location fool you, if you’re after a plate of broken rice or a hot bowl of Pho you’ll be sorely disappointed.. but only for a moment. Having opened for barely a month, Phi Phi 2 is the cheeky sibling to it’s sister restaurant (Phi Phi) just opposite the other side of Alfreida Street, who is an institution in it’s own right.
St Albans much like Footscray, Sunshine and other similar suburbs in the Western Suburbs are bustling with restaurants that cater to a community is that are mostly Vietnamese at large. There is an abundance of restaurants that tend to be Asian centric competing with one another as having the best ‘Pho’, the best value per dollar or even having better service than each other and so the list goes on.
Having spent many years as a corporate warrior, Jenny (Phi Phi 2’s Manager) finally took the plunge and conceptualised Phi Phi 2 from the ground up. Observing that there was a gap in the market that was clearly very popular in Vietnam but has not caught on in Australia, an idea was born. To introduce locals to the taste of Asian Charcoal grill at night and to tempt lunchgoers with their entrees and mains with a unique fusion flavour.
Phi Phi 2 is a hangout oozing to the brim with personality. A graffiti center piece vibing out to some old school RNB.. am I even St Albans anymore?! Staff is attentive and Jenny routinely checked up on us without intruding. The lunch time menu ranges anywhere from $7-$13 and ideally shared between large groups so everyone can try a bit of everything. Works out for all the professional fatties out there! They are licensed with an open bar, so you can have a rowdy night with your mates or relax to some mocktails crafted lovingly by the expert mixers.
There were just so many dishes to choose from but the Quack Attack, Moo Slider and Spanish Hottie stood out the most for me.
I have to confess duck is not my thing. Like, ‘if it’s too musky and chewy.. I’ll chunder violently kicking in gagging reflexes I never knew I had’ not my thing. I know, I’m a warrior among men. I’m happy to report, no gagging! The quality of duck was top notch and just worked with their housemade blend of what tasted like Hoisin sauce.
The Moo Slider had a small hiccup with the bread being overdone but the scotch fillet spoke for itself (imagine the flavor of the pork chop you get with broken rice in a slider). I did notice that Phi Phi 2 still kept tradition alive by using ingredients that Phi Phi 1 are famous for. The roasted pork belly and the roast duck were a dead giveaway and also tasted delicious!
The, ‘Spanish Hottie’ was a bit of a curve ball that strayed away from your Asian fare but was a well done pasta dish. Chicken, chorizo, mushrooms, bacon AND feta? Delicious.
Stay tuned for a part 2 because I cannot wait to try their dinner menu and see what Asian Charcoal Grill has to offer. If you like trying new things or old things with a twist or like relatively old school RNB (by my standards anyway), definitely give Phi Phi 2 a go!
4 moustaches out of 5!