Mr K. has a craving for DIY duck pancakes at home so we decided to catch the train into Central to pick up a duck from our usual vendor on Thomas Street, as well as a couple of packets of pancakes, jar of Hoi Sin, the rest we had at home. Simple. Thanks to the one of the western worlds most inefficient train systems, Cityrail, no trains were running between Sydenham and Central. Not so simple now. By the time we got into town I was famished and needed some sustenance and was starting to have visions of grapevines and dumplings on the bus ride over.
I knew exactly where to go, somewhere I hadn’t been for a while, and seeing it’s located virtually across the road from the duck place, it was all meant to be.
This relic of a restaurant is something else. Don’t judge this place by its gaudy exterior and curious plastic grape vine-covered ceiling and tapestry-covered walls. It’s all about the food here. Traditional is the operative word. Once you’re ushered onto one of the cramped tables and given a pot of complimentary jasmine tea by unenthused robotic staff you’ll have a couple of minutes to choose what you want before someone is standing by the table, order book in hand.
The dumplings and noodles are definite specialities of the house. You can even watch them being made through the glass window by the kitchen. Chinese peep-show …no coins required. Everything I’ve tried here is damn tasty and my favourites have got to be the delightful little pork and shallot fried dumplings (8.5). Soft tops with crispy bottoms and filled with flavoursome meat and shallot and just enough juice to help wash things down. I’m salivating just thinking about it.