I’ve tried a few different online order food delivery services now, and have had largely positive experiences. It’s hard to judge though, as I order takeaway food so irregularly – what actually defines ‘good’ and ‘bad’ service? For me, I think it all comes down to how user-friendly the website is and whether or not they make it easy for you to get food into your mouth sooner rather than later. EatNow ticks all the boxes.
Once you hit the homepage, you’re presented with a single question – where do you want food delivered to? One question to get you started on your journey, so you’re not bombarded at this point with a million questions about what cuisine you’re after, whether you want your food delivered to you or whether you’ll pick it up…it’s simple, and very user-friendly.
Once you get to the next page, that’s when you can begin to filter by what you’re interested in. The system does do some automatic sorting for you based on whether or not the restaurant is open at the time, whether they offer free delivery, and its popularity and proximity.
I decided that (uncharacteristically!) I feel like some Thai food with a bit of a twist, and so I pick Sumrayn Thai Bangkok Street Food located in Chatswood. It certainly helps that they have a lot of different special offers, including a 15% off first time orders which catches my eye. EatNow automatically calculates this discount for you and updates your total order on the side, which makes it much easier as you go through the menu to ensure that you keep within your budget.
Now I don’t know about you, but I love signing in using my social media accounts. I’m permanently logged into Facebook and Twitter on my computer, so when it comes to creating new accounts for websites like this, it makes it a lot easier to simply click the ‘Sign in with Facebook’ button than bother with creating a new account and trying to remember passwords!
Once you’re logged in and you provide your delivery details, you can choose to pay in a few different ways. I rarely carry cash on me in this age of Paypass, so I always like to see easier alternative payment options available. I used Paypal, and the process of moving to Paypal to login and verify payment before returning to the EatNow website was virtually seamless – very easy for the consumer.
The order confirmation came in stages. First you see your confirmation on screen, a minute later you get a confirmation email, and then when the restaurant receives and acknowledges your order, you get a confirmation SMS. It’s a little excessive, but comforting at the same time as you definitely know that you’ve placed your order and that your food is on its way.
Our apartment can actually be quite difficult to find as it’s not accessible through a normal street address, so I always worry that any delivery people will be left wandering around completely lost. The delivery man for Sumrayn Thai was a total gun though, and came to our apartment without an issue, even complimenting me on the delivery instructions I had submitted with our order for making it easy for him. He was right on time as well, arriving at 6.55pm for a 7pm order.
Given it was just dinner for the two of us, I tried to control my usual over-ordering desires and simply ordered two entrees and two mains. I even skipped ordering our usual serve of delicious fragrant coconut rice so that we didn’t fill up on empty carbs. Everything came nicely packed in a mix of styrofoam containers, plastic takeaway boxes, and foil-lined paper bags.
The first main I ordered was the Crispy Soft Shell Crab with Black Pepper Sauce. I’m an absolute fiend for soft shell crab and try to order it whenever we go out. I have to admit though that I was a little apprehensive about how this would turn out given that fried food doesn’t always travel well – it’s the type of thing you really need to eat almost immediately after it comes out of the deep fryer. This turned out incredibly well though, with the soft shell crab still crispy and crunchy after the trip from Chatswood to our apartment. The ‘black pepper sauce’ was a bit disappointing though, as it was a mere drizzle on the side salad rather than a full dipping sauce like I had envisioned.
Entrees were the Golden Tofu and the Crab and Prawn Rice Net Spring Rolls. The rice net spring rolls are just that little bit more interesting than normal spring rolls because of its interesting texture. Other than that, they were pretty standard spring rolls, and like the soft shell crab still managed to stay crispy! The tofu was quite enjoyable – it was a simple base that worked really well with the peanut sauce dipping sauce that it came with.
This Crispy Pork Belly with Chinese Broccoli was a real highlight. I had thought that the pork belly would be cooked with the broccoli which would have been quite questionable in terms of how it would remain crispy. Thankfully when it arrived, the dish actually came in two parts – the stir-fried Chinese broccoli in a plastic container full of sauce, and the crispy pork belly chunks in a foil-lined paper bag. Though the dish is technically supposed to be eaten together, it’s just as nice to separate the two different elements and eat them separately – the pork belly equal parts fatty and crispy, and the broccoli flavourful with a real chilli hit.
K and I really enjoyed our dinner from Sumrayn Thai, courtesy of EatNow’s Sydney CBD Food delivery. Service was prompt and polite, food was surprisingly good having survived the trip to our apartment, and we even got a bit of a discount with 15% off the first order, making dinner for two (with leftovers for the next day!) an easy $50.60. EatNow made ordering online superbly easy, and we’d definitely consider them again the next time we need takeaway food!
Note: This review was sponsored by EatNow, but all words and images are my own.