176 Toorak Road
South Yarra VIC 3141
Tel: +61 (03) 9078 1686
Opening Hours: Closed on Tues.
Lunch: Mon - Fri (excl. Tues) 11.30am - 2.30pm, Sat - Sun 12pm - 2.30pm
Dinner: Sun - Thurs (excl. Tues) 4.30pm - 9.30pm, Fri - Sat 4.30pm - 10pm
3 Tivoli Road
South Yarra VIC 3141
Tel: +61 (03) 9663 3038
Opening Hours: Wkdays 7.30am - 4.30pm, Wkends 7.30am - 5pm
A week ago, I was off to Melbourne for one crazy weekend of eating again. And this time, I spent a little more time south of the Yarra River. I like the South Yarra area very much. There are nice cafes, shops and is generally just a nice place to walk around. If I was living in Melbourne, I reckon that I would love to stay not too far from the area.
South Yarra is certainly not lacking of good food. I've heard loads about Dainty Sichuan before this trip. J had been asking us to pay a visit since over a year ago when R & I first went to Melbourne for a short getaway. And then there's Anthony Bourdain who's featured this place on one of his popular TV shows and tweeted about it recently when he was in Melbourne for the Food and Wine Festival. Since Melbourne has countless exciting cafes to check out, Sichuan food is usually not on the list but I figured it was time to find out what the hype was.
Chongqing Chilli Chicken
Fish Flavoured Eggplant
The food might look spicy but it was actually manageable. What got to R were the Sichuan peppers in the Mapo Tofu that caused some numbness to the tongue. I actually liked the tingling feeling although I'd have to admit that it was a bit hard to taste the rest of the dishes without getting distracted with the numbness. I found it pretty amusing nonetheless (and the dish very tasty). Of all the dishes, I liked the Chilli Chicken the most. When it arrived at the table, R & I were worried that we couldn't make past half of it but it was so delicious and addictive that we polished about three quarters of the plate. The Fish Flavoured Eggplant dish is one that many rave about and I reckon it should be a dish that is a must-order if you're visiting for the first time. However, I think this dish is only enjoyable when eaten while it's still warm because the batter starts sticking together once the temperature cools.
If you have the stomach after a satisfying lunch at Dainty Sichuan, I suggest you take a leisurely 10 to 15 minute walk to the nearby MoVida Bakery which opened its doors at the end of April this year. The MoVida Group and Frank Camorra certainly needs no introduction and I'm very excited that they opening a new establishment in Sydney soon.
Lemon Custard Donut & Beef Pie
The Beef Pie was perfect for a cold day as it was warm, rich and comforting. I highly recommend the Lemon Custard Donut to end the meal (or meals). The zing from the lemon was a great offset against the sweet doughnut. If you're up for a sweeter option, I reckon you might like the Salted Caramel Donut instead. MoVida Bakery also has sandwiches, breads, sweet pastries and even has take-home meals if you're too lazy to cook!
I have never visited a MoVida outlet myself although I've heard wonderful things (boo!) and I guess I better make sure I get a table the next time I'm in town. Or I could just visit the bakery again!
Happy exploring in South Yarra!