Last week while heading back to Canberra, I decided to drop by Cabramatta to do a little bit of shopping and pick up some Asian goodies. Canberra is kind of overpriced when it comes to Asian groceries and ingredients and it also lacks a lot of my favourite things so I tend to hoard when I’m back up visiting family and friends. On this particular trip, we were heading up and down John Street, grabbing a couple of pork rolls, again hoarding since Canberra pork rolls just can’t compete with those from Cabramatta sadly, on taste or price. While walking down the street, I saw this really modern looking cafe with a screen out front displaying various awesome looking desserts and drinks. Once I saw it, I couldn’t say no! We were on a bit of a deadline but it looked to good to miss, so I put my plans on hold and headed in.
Bambu is located on John Street towards the upper side of the Cabramatta shopping area, near the Tan Viet Noodle House. Bambu along with a handful of other stores like Teinoya’s Garden, Gloria Jeans, What The Fudge, and various frozen yoghurt stores and milk tea chains which have opened up in recent years has really reinvigorate a largely traditional and Vietnamese cultural centre with a younger influence. Cabramatta isn’t just a place to grab Vietnamese groceries and food any more, its a place you can go to and sit down at hip, modern cafes and chat the afternoon away and then go back to picking up groceries and getting Vietnaamese food. It is nice to see the introduction of these types of cafes and eateries into Cabramatta and see it transform into something more like Canley Vale. Nothing is worse than arriving at 5PM on a weekday or weekend and everything is closed, these cafes will hopefully bring a night life to Cabramatta that Canley Vale has been able to create in a few short years, whether its 12 noon or 12 midnight, people are out and about, chatting and having a good time.
At Bambu we opted for a Gaytime frappe ($5.60, small). Bambu’s menu included a range of sweet treats and drinks including frozen yoghurt, waffles, coffees, frappes, smoothies and fruit shakes. I think there is quite a big focus on the waffles actually, I remember when we were ordering our drink, they really did try to sell their waffles, which did sound and look really good but unfortunately we were on a deadline and couldn’t dine in for too long. Plus, I was here for the amazing looking drinks! So, when it comes to these lovely eye candy drinks, apparently there are two different types of shakes, the standard ones which have pretty basic flavours and then you have these ones, which include some really cool sounding flavours like Gaytime, Twix, Sneakers, Reese, Nutella, mint and other goodies like that, plus I’m pretty sure the crew at Bambu explained that only the special super frappes come with the fancy schmancy toppings, cones and what not where as the standard flavours are standard and boring looking.
Oh on a (very important) side note! Apparently, the small option is served in a mason cup while the large option comes in a plastic cup and doesn’t look as good. Okay, I know that shouldn’t really impact my food decisions but come on, who doesn’t eat with their eyes?! I definitely do, so I opted for a small and to be honest, it was a pretty good serving for $5.60 plus it was a really nice but quite a rich drink so between us, the small was more than enough to satisfy any sweet cravings we were having.
Oh! I was recently on Bambu’s Facebook page and I noticed they have Devon cronuts! How awesome is that, you don’t have to go all the way to Woolloomooloo to get those crazy pork floss, squared shaped cronuts! I didn’t see any when I was there but I guess it must be a new thing. Next time I’m up from Canberra, I’m definitely dropping by to try some of the cronuts out!
I guess I should probably talk about the Golden Gaytime frappe that we got. I’ll start with the most pressing thing, was it just novel or did it actually taste nice? Well, I can happily report, like with The Vogue Cafe, who also do really awesome looking drinks, this was a treat on the eyes and taste buds as well. It was just an awesome combination of chocolate, honeycomb and creamy goodness with heaps of different textures. The frappe comes with this massive ice cream cone that is filled with vanilla ice cream, topped with a swirl of whipped cream, a sprinkling of peanuts and covered in a drizzle of caramel. The cone and rim of the mason cup was also dipped in milk chocolate and nuts. This shake definitely has a lot going on but it works.
The milkshake itself was also quite tasty, there were hints of creaminess, caramel, toffee and honey, while the chocolate came from the rim which was a coated in a delicious and high quality milk chocolate. Reading that description and looking at the pictures, your probably assuming that its quite rich, well I’m not going to argue with you on that point but its rich in the best way possible, I just kept wanting more and more of this shake, it was just such a great balance between sweetness and creaminess.
I really enjoyed the addition of the vanilla ice cream inside the cone, I had no idea Bambu did this, I just assume it was an empty cone, until I took a bite and was pleasantly surprised. Of course, I ended up eating the cone as a treat on its own, I couldn’t help myself, it had ice cream, cream and nuts and caramel topping, it kind just felt like a sundae but in a cone!
I didn’t get to try anything else at Bambu but the other menu items look quite appealing, especially the other super frappes, the fruit shakes and waffles. I will definitely have to drop by Cabramatta again to grab some more goodies from Bambu, plus the addition of cronuts from Devon Cafe is a massive plus for me, I hope they have some when I’m up next! I’m very happy and excited to see more places like this open up in Cabramatta. This turns Cabramatta to a place that I can relate to as much as my parents did and still do. Its no longer just a place to eat traditional Vietnamese food and grabbing groceries, it’s becoming a cultural centre for my generation just as much as it was for my parent’s generation. Well, I’ll probably still go get groceries and get pho here because well yeah that stuff is fantastic.