Kinx Cafe: Bankstown's Hidden Gem for Foodies

Kinx, Bankstown

Kinx is a cafe in Bankstown with a range of modern Asian breakfasts, brunches and lunches with their very creative spin on cafe favourites as well as a range of delicious drinks. Known as the yellow shop on Chapel Road it is a little oasis in the middle of Bankstown.

Kinx, Bankstown

What's a friendship unless you send each other memes throughout the day? Any friend of mine can expect a flurry of memes and honestly, I do expect some in return. Monica had sent me almost a dozen throughout the last few years of Kinx in Bankstown. She found this café on Instagram and we made plans to visit. That was back in 2020 and over the next few years, plans to visit Kinx got cancelled and reinstated and cancelled again. Until we decided that enough was enough and we were going there.

Kinx, Bankstown

"So we're just changing the menu completely," says the smiling woman who is taking our order. Tina Hoang and her husband Van Le run Kinx in Bankstown. Monica and I look at each other. She knows that is the last thing I want to hear because what is the point of writing about a dish that you Dear Reader cannot order. "The new menu starts on Friday," she adds which is about 3 day's time. I suppress the thought that our visit is somehow jinxed and we order our food and drink.

Kinx, Bankstown

Kinx is a cafe named after Kingston, Tina and Van's son. Van grew up in Vietnam and when he was 11 years old he and his family migrated to Australia. "As my mum had to work multiple jobs to support our family, I had to learn to be more independent to cook my own meals. Food became a way for me to stay connected to my Vietnamese roots," he says. He and Tina talked a lot about starting a business together with their experience in hospitality and his 10 years of being a chef. "It was very stressful and challenging in the first year because one month after our grand opening, the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic started. But we made it through and I believe the business has so evolved a lot," says Van. The menu is filled with creative options and as for the prices, they're incredibly reasonable with a burger and fries coming in at $15. And this blog post is a combination of two visits, as some of the dishes return to the menu in the future.

Kinx, Bankstown
Yuzu Soda $7.50

I start with a yuzu soda which is really just brilliant. It came on her recommendation and it is sweet but not overly so, just the right balance of zingy yuzu and sweetness.

Kinx, Bankstown
Vietnamese Taro Coffee $9

There are two types of Vietnamese style coffee-one with taro and another with coconut milk. I love the flavour of taro so I order that one and it comes out chilled in a deep purple shade with shavings of toasted coconut on top and strands of grass jelly in it. It's perfectly sweet and very strong (note I stayed up all night after drinking this but I am very suspectible to caffeine).

Kinx, Bankstown
District 3 Pasta $24

The District 3 pasta is named after the vibrant and eclectic area in Ho Chi Min city. "The Inspiration for District 3 Pasta came from a trip back to Vietnam, where we dined at a 'Quan Oc', a restaurant specializing in sea snails, in district 3 Saigon cooked in this yummy amazing chili sate sauce. " says Van. A Vietnamese sate sauce is made with garlic, shallots, chilli, lemongrass and fish sauce and is not to be confused with Indonesian satay peanut sauce. Described as mildly spicy is has chilli shrimp sate butter, spaghetti and a wonderful depth of flavour from the shells. If licking a plate was permissible I would have as the sauce is so delectable.

Kinx, Bankstown
Holy Crab! $26

We all love noodles and and the Holy Crab! is a bowl of ramen noodles with a roasted garlic butter broth, finely sliced black fungus and salted egg yolk crumbs as well as a generous amount of picked crab meat. The sauce like the pasta above has a moreish quality to it with an intensely seafood flavour. "This dish was inspired by the countless times I dined in Cantonese restaurants and always enjoyed their garlic butter sauce mud crab with noodles. I put a spin on it by using ramen noodles and turning garlic butter sauce into a broth with crab meat. To this day its the most sold dish at Kinx Cafe," says Van.

Kinx, Bankstown
Pho Ribs $48

The pho ribs is also one of those dishes that runs out quickly even at $48 a serve. There are three parts to this: a hoisin glazed Angus beef short rib served sliced off the bone with medium rice noodles, fried mushrooms and a pho style gravy. The beef could be a smidge softer but the flavours are outstanding. What I really like about the food is that the seasoning is spot on. I do think this might have been better in a bowl because the plate is a little shallow for the pho gravy which is slightly thicker than a broth. Van explains, "As a Vietnamese I have a special love for Pho and could eat it every day I always wanted to put Pho on the menu to represents my cultural heritage but because there are so many Vietnamese restaurants in the area serving Pho I wanted to find a way to stand out and put my own twist and modernise this classic dish. Since we introduced Pho Ribs to our menu, it has become a customer favorite. Many of our regulars come back just for this dish."

Kinx, Bankstown
Ga Chien Nuoc Mam Burger $15

There are a few burgers on the menu and I was tossing up between the beef or chicken one but the chicken one won out. It's a caramel nuoc cham fried chicken thigh fillet with a shallot and pickle slaw wtih mayonnaise on a soft potato bun. The outside batter is super crunchy and glass-like nad the chicken is wonderfully soft and tender. I love the addition of the pickle slaw and mayonnaise on the soft bun.

Kinx, Bankstown
Bun Cha Ha Noi $22

The grilled meat vermicelli noodles come out on a bamboo platter with vermicelli noodles, lettuce, pickles, fresh herbs and a crisp chicken spring roll. There's also a bowl of nuoc cham broth with grilled wagyu nem nuong meatballs and Angus beef intercostals. They tell us to dip the noodles in the soup to eat them. The soup is delicious with an appealing sweetness to it but it's the intercostals that really provide the interest. I love these wrapped up in the lettuce leaves with herbs and chilli.

Kinx, Bankstown
Seafood Hu Tieu $25

The seafood hu tieu comes with either rice or egg noodles (we choose egg noodles) with king prawn, blue swimmer crab meat, bean sprouts, garlic chives and a "meat sauce". I'm not sure what the meat sauce is but this noodle dish is incredibly moreish with the wonderful depth of flavour to this rich broth. They're very generous with the amount of blue swimmer crab meat and I love the medium sized egg noodles too.

Kinx, Bankstown
Chilli Shrimp Salt Fries $6.50

Whatever you do you have to order the fries. They're possibly unlike any other fries you have tried before. "I was born in Tay Ninh province south east of Vietnam that is known for making Chilli Shrimp Salt," explains Van. The chilli shrimp salt is insanely moreish with a spicy, sweet and salty element to it. The smaller size is very generous and honestly if they sold this salt I'd buy it in a flash. Georgie and I were very much enamoured by these fries polishing them off until there was not a single fry left.

So tell me Dear Reader, did you cook a lot while you were growing up? Have you ever tried chilli shrimp salt?

These meals were independently paid for.


3/432 Chapel Rd, Bankstown NSW 2200

Tuesday to Friday 8 am–3:30 pm

Saturday & Sunday 9 am–3:30 pm

Phone: (02) 8772 5117

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