I am always on the lookout for a fantastic vegetarian and or vegan restaurant. I was highly recommended to come here from one of my tutors who happened to quite enjoy exploring what Melbourne had to offer on the dining table herself. A little understate, Sister of Soul is positioned down on the corner of the Acland St block down the end just behind Luna Park. The establishment was furnished with light wooden tables and chairs, with the kitchen and bar down the far end.
Upon arriving, I noticed that the service was at first friendly and attentive, but afterwards the staff pretty much leave you to your own devices for the rest of the night. Now this can be both a good and bad thing depending on how much privacy you want, however Le boy had to hail a waiter down a couple of times first to actually order, then to order dessert and finally for the bill. I don’t know about you, but I got the feeling that we could have just walked out of there and they probably wouldn’t even know that we were gone until it was too late. I kid, but you get what I mean.
When we finally were able to order and our food had arrived, there was some highlights and some plain lights.
The vegetarian gyoza dumplings were the best thing we had during the night. Served with a bit of tamari (which the gyozas didn’t need because they were that good), the green little vegie dumplings were thinly wrapped, crisp and full of moisture. Le boy did not even realize they were vegetarian. They were that good.
Although good at first bite, the tempeh burger was lacking a bit of flavour. A more stronger sauce in the burger for example tomato or sweet chilli would have done it more justice than the balsamic relish which I could barely taste. For a vegan option ask for the eggs and cheese to be omitted. The burger had some pretty good height to it and overall was quite filling without leaving you with a heavy feeling.
For what this dish gained in it’s beautiful presentation, it lacked in flavour kicks. There was an abundance of vegetable greens, which I welcome with my open mouth. But apart from the curry spice, the dish was pretty much flavourless which was disappointing. It looked so promising though.
The watermelon and citrus (or was it lemon?) sorbets were really nice and refreshing. Not too sweet and light, but the most overpriced two scoops of ice cream neither of us had ever had in our lives. Considering the two little sorbet quenelles, we felt a little cheated. I was not looking forward to my dessert which came out next.
And I was not disappointed. I must admit, I had a much image on how the dessert would look like in my head than what was plated to me that evening. A blob of plain sticky black rice, topped with barely enough coconut milk to even cover the rice, some sugar pan fried dessicated coconut and a scoop of watermelon sorbet at appeared to be at least a little more than what Le Boy received earlier.
But was I too harsh? Surely I could not judge without tasting first. I was hoping for dear life that it would taste better than it looked, but again I was not disappointed. The coconut milk tasted more like a puddle of flavourless coconut cream and although everything else should theoretically taste well together, it didn’t and I struggled to finish the dessert in my personal bid not to waste food.
If I were to make a suggestion, it would be to sweeten the coconut milk and pour a generous amount of it over the sticky rice. Then top it off with the caramelized coconut and a scoop or quenelle of the sorbet on top or on the side.
As I looked around, I could clearly see that some other people were really enjoying themselves and their meals. I tried to like the place and even tried to let the restaurant redeeem itself by ordering dessert (I mean, how could you go wrong with dessert?), but Sister of Soul just didn’t seem to reach out to me in any way either in their service or food with the exception of the gyozas. After a long day at uni, dinner was less than satisfying.
NB: This post recounts Wandering Mint’s experience at Sister of Soul from a few months ago.