Australian Gourmet Traveller 2014 Best Chinese Restaurants's-best-chinese-restuarants/


Australia's best Chinese restaurants

Chilli takes the forefront at suburban favourite Sichuan Bang Bang - old Chinese takeaway digs are worth a visit alone. In Sunnybank, Brisbane's Chinatown, Taste Gallery offers excellent Shanghainese, while over Fortitude Valley way, Enjoy Inn (167 Wickham St, Fortitude Valley, 07 3252 3838) has been busting out Cantonese classics for more than 30 years. Newly opened sibling Enjoy Inn Hamilton (485 Kingsford Smith Dr, Hamilton, 07 3252 7878) offers top-end yum cha. The same goes forOriental Yum Cha and its extensive dumpling repertoire. For even more trolley action check out Bamboo Basket where Shanghai steam baskets are all the go, and for something a little more fancy, head to Obsession Chinese where the setting and produce-focused menu make for a winning combo.

For more than 150 years Chinese cooks have made Australia a vastly more interesting place to eat, and today Chinese cuisine contributes as much (or more) to our food identity as Italian or French cooking. With the Lunar New Year upon us, we've picked out some of our favourite eateries from around the country.

Golden Century continues to set the benchmark for grand-scale Cantonese dining in Sydney. Mr Wong leads the way for dim sum with its impressive lunchtime offerings from ex-Hakkasan chef Eric Koh. Other notable dim sum destinations includeFisherman's Wharf and longstanding favourite Marigold (Levels 4 & 5, 683 George St, Haymarket, 02 9281 3388). Chairman Mao (189 Anzac Pde, Kensington, 02 9697 9189) leads the way for the gutsy, smoky cuisine of Hunan, while the various outposts ofSpicy Sichuan and Red Chilli are your top spots for Sichuan cooking. For a taste of Yunnan province, check out George Street newcomer Two Sticks. On the more upmarket end of the spectrum, Billy Kwong  focuses on modern Cantonese with a native Australian twist, while the menu at Neil Perry's Spice Temple (also in Melbourne, pictured above) explores the cuisines of China's fierier regions.

Flower Drum remains the country's benchmark for upscale Cantonese food and great service, just as Dainty Sichuanremains the go-to venue for all things spice and heat. David'sserves home-style Shanghai cooking in a designer warehouse setting, while Chinese Jin Dumpling House (162 High St, Kew, 03 9853 8301) shows a northern Chinese influence, with plenty of lamb and coriander in the mix. Superior wontons and xiao long bao put Hutong and its more upmarket Crown sibling Man Tong Kitchen high on the to-do list. Chinatown's Crystal Jadehas them queuing down the stairs night and day yum cha. Those after irreverent, but surprisingly successful Australo-Chinese food and great cocktails should head for Happy Palace.

In Adelaide, Park Lok is your go-to for Cantonese, while From Orient flies the flag for Sichuan. Got yum cha on the agenda? Star House (1/39 Gouger St, Adelaide, 08 8221 6303) sets the benchmark in the dumpling department. If Peking duck's more your thing, though, head to Ming's Palace (157-159 Gouger St, Adelaide, 08 8231 9970) where the bird reigns supreme, or dig into what might be the country's best Chiu Chow food at longstanding favourites T Chow and Ying Chow (114 Gouger St, Adelaide, 08 8211 7998).


Renata Roberts