Northbridge is renowned for good cheap eateries – you can eat your way around the world with so many different restaurants especially those serving Asian food. There is however one place where you can find lots of Asian restaurants under one roof – the Old Shanghai Market in James Street.
Modelled on a Singapore Hawkers Centre, the Market includes stalls serving food from Malaysia, India, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Korea and China. The only major Asian influence that was not represented was Japanese. And the Market has another huge attraction – its very good value for money.
We visited the Market on a Saturday evening prior to going to watch Perth Glory in action and found lots of Perth families enjoying the food as well.
Tables inside and out are basic but very clean – busboys were clearing and cleaning tables almost as fast as the kids were eating!
There is also a bar serving soft drinks and alcohol but that is not as good value as the food. I had a glass of wine at a nearby Northbridge pub before going to eat. That glass cost $8. The same wine at the Market cost $9.50.
It’s easy to pick a dish even if you are not familiar with all the different Asian varieties. Many of the food stalls have pictures of their food that look remarkably like the food that turns upon the customer’s plate!
For our evening meal, I chose Thai – sweet chilli chicken and bbq pork with noodles – a good plateful for $10.50 served with rice or noodles. My husband chose a Thali plate from the Indian stall ($17); naan bread, poppadum, rogan josh, rice, raita, vindaloo, spicy vegetables, chicken tikka masala and a syrup dumpling ball.
Our daughter picked fried pork and prawn dumplings (4 for $5.80) and steamed prawn dumplings (3 for $6.50). These tasty dumplings are steamed or pan-fried to order and we were given a buzzer to let us know when to collect the food.
Our son-in-law went for the Vietnamese beef noodle soup bowl ($13). A not too spicy dish was requested and the condiments and spices came separately. Unfortunately, our son-in-law was very hungry so had almost demolished the delicious soup before I could take a photo! We also shared some chilli pepper squid ($6.50).
All meals were tasty and we enjoyed the Hawker experience – it’s a great value place for families. However I really can’t recommend
walking along James Street with grandkids unless you are prepared to answer awkward questions. There are still too many ‘adult ‘ shops with ‘interesting’ window displays.
There are a few parking spots in James Street but the best place to park would be at the State Library or take the train and cut through Yagan Square.
Address: 123 James Street
Reservations: Only for large groups
Opening hours: Open seven days 10am-10pm
Gluten-free options: Yes
Vegetarian options: Yes
Entertainment Book: No
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