Lower Ground, 393-399 Sussex Street, Haymarket
I remember as a kid, standing on the street level watching my mum as I waited for her whilst she did her Chinese grocery shopping at 393-399 Sussex Street. But the grocery store is long gone, and in its current iteration this below ground space is occupied by a Korean fashion store and its adjoining café serving fish shaped pastries, fruit flavoured slushies, and Bing Soos.
We were here after having lunch at Enjoy Café with my sis and her family, and we found ourselves a grouping of wicker lounges placed around a wicker coffee table in the below ground space as we waited for our orders to be made.
We ordered the Grapefruit Bing Soo, my sister and her husband shared with their kids the Mango Bing Soo, while the kids also shared a Watermelon slushie.
A Bing Soo for those less familiar with the Korean dessert, is a shaved ice, with different toppings incorporated into its icy enfold. For us our Bing Soo included Grapefruit juice, fresh pieces of grapefruit, these little exploding balls containing a sweet syrup within them (Popping Pearls) and underneath the dome of ice was a bed of cereal (Fruit-Loops and cornflakes). *Shrug*.
The Grapefruit was definitely sour, but with the iciness and the sweetness of the balls, it offset the tartness. And when we reached the layer of cereal, at first it was a little weird. But we started to understand the logic when the ice started to melt and the fruit-loops absorbed up the liquids. Because of this, it made the final 50% of the Bing Soo more enjoyable than other café’s offerings, as other Bing Soos end up becoming a Bing Soup!
My sister’s Mango Bing Soo was similar yet different, instead of the burst-y balls, they had small pieces of a sweet chewy thing, and a scoop of vanilla ice-cream on top; and mango replaced the pieces of grapefruit; while they also had the bed of cereal which acted as a crunchy sponge.
For $14.90 each (small size), its a little bit ex-y; but to have a space in the city to hang-out, it was definitely worth it! The space for me, was actually the highlight, as it felt really cosy; the wicker lounges were comfortable enough as they had a layer of cushion to shield you from all the hard bits; you could pull over enough chairs so that your entire group can fit around the coffee table; and the music and other patrons were low and far enough that your group does not intrude on their group. So I liked the space probably more than the Bing Soo, and more than our dining companions. Jks Jks, I love hanging out with my nephew and niece!
Check-out the Kanzi Café if you’re a group of 4-6 people, just wanting a nice space to continue on your lunch/dinner chats.